As a nation when did we stop thinking in terms of right and wrong? Democrats or Republicans, Liberals or Conservatives, they have just become labels devoid of meaning. Principles that every American held sacred are no longer universally accepted. We once chose the selfless to be our leaders instead of the selfish. Philosophical truths are subject to change based on the polls instead of intellectual rigor. Is this any way to govern a city, a state or a nation?
Our elected leaders and officials are not our best but our most driven. It is more important for our politicians to remain in an elected body than achieve any other goal. The greater good is sacrificed so that our individual leaders can remain tied to their offices. This is the country that we now live where we share no critical thought or moral principle.
How often do we hear from our representatives that “I have done nothing wrong legally” instead of “I have done nothing morally or ethically wrong” when trying to justify an action? The entire premise of public service is to put the good of the community over one’s self-interest. Which means as Montesquieu wrote that the motivating force or “spring” for democracies is the good of the community over those of an individual.
Sadly, we have lost the true nature of that concept. We now apply the words public servant to anyone who works for the government and hero to anyone that wears a uniform. This cheapens the person who actually does serve the public or sacrifices their life for the country. The meaning of words does matter. The reporting of facts untinged by personal bias is the role of the press.
Our political leaders need to have a moral compass and a governing philosophy. We need to hold them to a higher standard. We once voted for people who actually believed in what they said. Leaders that stood with the people. They believed in the common good and not just their next re-election campaign. Their governing philosophy was not the other guy is worse and I will promise anything for your vote.
Politics is derived from the Greek meaning people. A political party needs to be for something not just against something. It needs to represent with clarity of thought a governing philosophy. A political party should inspire for the better not sprout conspiracy theory or pander to our fears. A city on a hill is a far cry from lock her up.
Is this how our country finally ends dissolved into petty squabbles. The purpose being to address wrongs that really don’t exist and to preserve a way of life that never did. By locking out the world does anyone really believe it will go away. The bad will be kept out by walls and jobs that long ago ceased will return. This is just as much a fairy tale than anything in the Brothers Grimm.
Change is inevitable, incontrovertible and un-yielding on our country. No amount of myopic thought or wishful thinking prevent change. It is how you manage that change that is important and consequential. Our political parties and leaders need to help us accept and adapt. Persevere and move forward are the goals. Lying to us about what is possible is the basest of crimes because it robs us of our future.