For a half-century, a small radical fringe has undermined our trust in institutions. A new AP-NORC poll shows 28 percent of Americans feel they have just one person they trust to help them navigate work challenges or connect with an employer.
Meanwhile, leftist politics feed an angry mob of American so-called "peaceful protesters" or the reactive "insurrectionists." As a result, our American experiment is in great peril.
Suddenly, the American landscape looks and feels like the world we freely allowed inside our open borders. A world filled with lawlessness, lack of self-restraint, and unparalleled agitprop.
Like a Bunsen burner, a republic can run hot, and the wrong ingredients will blow. The American Experiment is such, and while we assume it can take on all of the world's human condition in one mix, we might need to lower the temperature.
In the last 20 years alone, Americans have endured an Islamic terrorist attack, massive immigration, and stock market crashes that wiped out or realigned long-term traditional family savings.
Shake in the most tumultuous presidential elections in history, and state-sponsored, mass media promoting censorship. Stir in some street tribalism, a brainwashed academy, and primal fear caused by the pandemic.
As a result, the mob is ready to pounce on a false neo-Marxist narrative that attributed all the country's ills to capitalism and Whiteness, which has led to "false prosperity." Sound a little like envy?
How did we get to this Apocalypse Now moment?
The American Experiment has survived with deeply religious values and an enlightened rule of law, built upon the two pillars of Western Judeo-Christian morality and the classical ideals of ancient Greece, transformed through John Locke, followed by Jefferson and the Founders.
Mobs, in contrast, operate like a virus that feeds off fear and panic, and we Americans need to put down the chaos and remain steadfast in our resolve to what has made the system work, "these truths we still hold."
Caste systems and race are not unique to the United States.
Slavery, foolishly branded "America's original sin," has been in practice since the beginning of time, without distinction of color. Remember Persia, China, Rome, or the myriad of caste systems employed in the world?
What's so unique about Christian America and its British predecessors was the very fact they considered slavery immoral. Since the ancient Greeks, Westerners had experienced enough freedom to critique their own imperfections.
Aristotle found human distinctions and ideals not in a mob hungry for Utopian vision but from common behaviors. Therefore, he concluded that a state would best serve its people by allowing individual souls to choose their destiny.
John Locke would reflect the same in his teachings, "the pursuit of life, liberty, and the pursuit of property," where the government served man, not the other way around.
What made the difference for the West was the idea of God becoming human (an individual) in Christ. The King (or State) identifies with the commoner so that all of us could find in our essential suffering value.
Jesus also made the distinction between the State and the spirit, "Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar's; and to God, the things that are God's," and so did the American Founders in their independence.
Marx, a dark figure, saw negative humankind in perpetual war. His near-contemporary John Locke knew that the only alternative we have are our rights as the moral path for a free society.
Christianity built on Rome, and Marcus Aurelius's Stoic philosophy would later state, "death smiles at us all; all we can do is smile back." The great General understood utopia would never arrive by power but by individual responsibility.
A fire requires oxygen to burn, and we know in 2020 who started the flames. As we extinguish the fire of radicalism and rebuild our country, we must stop to remember the American formula for the experiment to work again:
- Secure the borders.
- Retreat from foreign entanglements.
- Restore the American legacy in schools.
- Maintain a dominant military
- Diffuse the power of the State
In doing so, we begin the new American Restoration.