Posted By RichC on June 28, 2015
Read ONLY if you don’t’ mind getting lost in the weeds. I felt bit lost in my own country after the Supreme Court decisions this week and am concerned for the future. As a Christian, I’m trying to looking past my own traditional value and faith-based Biblical beliefs which have long been part of our country and hoping that there will be positives that I currently don’t see. Perhaps reflecting on previous generations will help?
Part Two (yesterday was part one)
My parents relaxed a bit when the draft ended in the mid-1970s, the movements grew old and burnt out (as did the participants) … but they still questioned the changes facing the country. Teens were playing that “loud obnoxious rock and roll music,” even as the psychedelic drug use faded. The attention seeking “dirty hippies” went more anti-establishment most chose a more “laid back” life … often in their California communes. They were no longer on the front lines of change. The uniting force of rebelling against a horrible war, the downfall of the President (Nixon) had rewarded solid victories in the area of social change (equal rights, pollution, etc) gave this maturing youth movement a feeling that they made a difference … even if they began questioning “to what end?” Happiness was still evasive for many.
As always seems to happen, the pendulum swung too far in the 1970s and foreign organizations took advantage of America’s weakness. OPEC financially strangled the U.S. economy by controlling oil and we were ill prepared as a government or a country for this energy crisis … sound familiar? Islamic extremist (déjà vu) in Iran overthrew the Shah and took over the American Embassy and held Americans hostage. Under President Carter, the U.S. was perceived –correctly— as “passive and weak” … these bold Muslim Student Followers of the Imam’s Line fear no retaliation or at least acted without fear. The U.S. planned a couple rescue attempts with special forces … one failed leaving the U.S. with a public black eye and the other was never attempted. It was an embarrassment to our President Carter, our nation’s people and to its demoralized military.
As mentioned, the pendulum can swing too far and just as it did in World War II when Isoroku Yamamoto feared he had woken a sleeping giant, and yes … it happened again. The American people were not happy with the conditions they found themselves in and searched for leadership — found it in Ronald Reagan. The climb back to greatness for our nation wasn’t as easy as it may look when reading a page or two in a history book, but there is no doubt that Reagan’s optimistic vision and confidence rekindled the greatness of our Democracy and the American people. It was a time to be proud of our country, its heritage, its benevolence around the world and yes in American Exceptionalism.
It is amazing when looking back on the Reagan decade and to remember certain things. It started the moment Reagan completed his inauguration speech as the 52 American hostages who held for 444 days were immediately released. Small and large business … and entrepreneurship expanded in the 80s and many new industries grew despite the difficult economy, inflation and high interest rates. Pride and confident soared as government moved out of the way of business, encouraging them to innovate and create new ways to do things. Computers became useful in everyday business … and even in the home. Pride in appearance gave retailers a boost as people wanted to drive a new cars, wear jackets, ties and dresses again. As interest rates fell and incomes rose, people bought homes and upgraded. Investing, saving and accountability for ones future seemed possible. Work was no longer something to “try and get out of” … but something to take pride in. And the military … it gained note of respect. It modernized, it upsized. The sky was no longer the limit … Reagan was talking about defending from “space” with his controversial SDI – “StarWars program.” Even our arch enemy the Soviet Union recognized the rebound of the U.S. as a world power and knew it was foolish to challenge it or even attempt to keep up. The power of Democratic free market capitalism even convinced the USSR’s leader Mikhail Gorbachev to ponder some form of capitalism. He would be the last leader of the Soviet Union before the Communist Party of the Soviet Union until it dissolved in 1991.
During the late 1980s and through the early 2000s traditional values inched back from the liberal progressive drift the United States slid a couple decades previous. Flag, motherhood and apple pie made a comeback … and even Christianity and church participation had a revival of sorts. The events of 9/11/2001 even united those who disagreed with so much money being spent on the military. Fighting terror took time, costs lives and billions if not trillions of tax dollars; we grew war weary and discontented with the ongoing conflicts that seemed endless … and the economy was suffering as we all pretended the “house of cards” we were building would never collapse. It did in 2008 and voters shoved out the old and brought in a “new kind of leader.” The election sent liberal Democrats to the House, Senate and Whitehouse with the goal of “fundamentally transforming the United States of America” (Barrack Obama). And it was, and is still being done in 2015 … the pendulum swung to the left.
The recent “transformation” is putting in place as many progressive policies as possible. The Affordable Care Act is a “precursor” to what many on the left really would like to see in America … single payer health care. Discontent and increase cost of the mandated “federal government approved insurance policies,” will only accelerate convincing the populace they need socialized medicine. We’re also seeing this “fundamental transformation” in our foreign policy too. No longer are we seeking “peace through strength” (Reagan) but we’re once again seeing history repeat (as the subject line hints) in removing troops and paring down our influence around the world. Instead, progressives are wielding more power at home through the NSA, EPA, IRS and Justice Department who is selectively administering “social justice.” The left has little problem with a bigger government in order to dictate policies from Washington while they are in control. Their philosophy is a “we know best” top down approach to dictating how we live.
Progressives seem to disagree with our country’s Declaration of Independence and that we hold certain “truths self-evident” or that the Rights were endowed by our Creator. The left show little respect for religion and in particular Christians holding to their Biblical view on marriage and homosexuality. They have challenged the Bible, “the Laws of Nature and Nature’s God” and label a person intolerant or bigoted if defining marriage as the union between a man and a women … which in their religion was ordained by God (a protected First Amendment Right). To the non-believer, this may not be and issue … but to a Christian or those who believe the Bible gives instruction to live by … it is quite different. At any rate, the left celebrated another victory when the Supreme Court ruled 5-4 this past week in their decision that same-sex marriage is a nationwide right.
And the Lord God said, ‘It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him’ . . . And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall on Adam, and he slept; and He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh in its place. Then the rib which the Lord God had taken from man He made into a woman, and He brought her to the man. And Adam said: ‘This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.’ Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh (Gen. 2:18, 21-24).
You shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination. (NKJ, Leviticus 18:22)
The question to ponder now that gays are now permitted to marry in all 50 states is what happens when practice of religion, protected under the First Amendment conflicts with the new ruling for homosexuals and gay marriage? “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…” What exactly does one do when their religious teaching and belief conflicts with new rulings from their conflicted Supreme Court?
Perhaps this weeks rulings (the Affordable Care Act and Gay Marriage) are bigger arguments for wiser people than me … but I’m not the only thinking that “the Supreme Court overstepped its role” and has attempted to write law (the job of congress) rather than interpret.
Back to “History repeats”
The pendulum continues to swing (even in my lifetime) as the country moves away from traditional values and our countries Biblical foundation. Many of the changes over the last couple hundred years, as our founding father’s designed, have been positive … and for that I’m thankful. Unfortunately there are times when “activists” gain control and wield their influence to “fundamentally change the United States” in rapid fashion … and that has me has me concerned due to the radical change (be it in either direction); why aren’t the safeguards working?
A final observation: The youth of the United States are use to instant gratification and are overwhelmingly are on the side of the recent changes — their influence is being heard and felt. When I saw change in the 1960s and 70s, as liberalism sweep in social policies and an era of radical change, it took time. Even at that slow pace, we now recognize that Democrats with their liberal policies went too far and damaged the country and our stature in the world. The Republicans with conservative principles returned to power in the 1980s and restored what was lost. Will history repeat this again in 2016? Have the Democrats, controlled by the liberal progressive wing, pushed too far too fast? Time will tell.