Resolved – to be a Better American
Late last night, as you and I were ringing in the new year, respected men from all around the country were working to keep our country from going over the “fiscal cliff.” Whether or not you agree with the measures they take, there is no denying the urgent needs of our country right now.
What is wrong with our country?
There is much finger pointing and accusation right now. The Democrats blame the Republicans. The Republicans blame the Democrats. The Independents, Constitutionalists, Libertarians, and other smaller factions among us blame the two established parties for our woes. Frankly, I believe that this is all part of the problem.
My grandma used to tell me that you shouldn’t complain about something unless you had a solution to offer. I think the point is that all the criticism and finger pointing in the world don’t really do any good. Right now, the biggest dilemma we face is not figuring out who is to blame for America’s problems. Rather, the dilemma is in charting the best path forward.
Make no mistake, America does have problems. They not small, and I have no reason to believe the best solutions will be quick or painless. We spend far more than we earn. The number of Americans receiving assistance is growing at an alarming rate. Jobless rates remain high. Right now the interest alone on our nations debt is staggering and frightening. Our representatives bicker endlessly over issues which, in many cases, they cannot relate to. No one can deny that we have problems.
Current issues including the fiscal cliff, gun control, abortion, gay rights, and the social security and medicare programs are all crowding in on our horizon.
However, I believe that the root of the problem is not found in Washington, D.C.. I wrote an article on December 13, 2011 titled, “The Problem With America is…. me?” Here is a short excerpt which explains my position.
Our culture is made up of individuals – you, me, and many more just like us. We have the ability to shape and define the culture around us on a daily basis. It has been said that the person with the smallest amount of influence directly influences at least seven people every day. While I may not be able to change the entire world, I can choose how I affect those around me. With this in mind, I am at least partially responsible for the current state of affairs in my beloved USA. The problem (with America) is me.
What is the solution our America needs?
I believe the solution to America’s woes will not be found at level of federal, state, county, or local government. While there are definitely reforms needed at each of those levels, I believe that best way to reform America is to bring back the idea of personal responsibility. We are each responsible for our own actions. We should be spending less than we earn; training our children to respect authority and life; teaching the importance of freedom of religion; and helping our neighbors. As we model the values we believe are important to America, others can learn from our example. This, in my opinion, is the solution for the root of America’s problems.
In a nutshell, America needs better Americans.
How can I effect the solution to America’s problems?
I cannot claim that I can keep us from going over the “fiscal cliff.” I can, however, use my influence more efficiently for the betterment of America. I can vote, I can discuss, I can care about what is happening in the world around me enough to do more than just read the headlines. I can take responsibility for my own actions. I can be an example to those around me of what an American Citizen should be.
This then, is my New Year’s Resolution.
Resolved – To be a better American
Thanks for taking the time to ponder my thoughts,
Happy New Year,