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Values - The Disappearing Act

  • This was written in 2016 but it is still pertinent today.

    From Oxford Dictionary

    (values) A person’s principles or standards of behavior; one’s judgment of what is important in life: they internalize their parents' rules and values

    I don't know when it happened. Not sure if it was a gradual erosion until there was nothing left, or if there was some black hole that sucked the collective values of this country in - never to be seen again. Whatever the cause, the values that used to firmly hold this country as a strong and unified force against inhumanities and as a beacon of hope for the masses have disappeared. Partial quote from the Statue of Liberty (a gift from France in 1886) plaque:

    Give me your tired, your poor,

    Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,

    The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.

    Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,

    I lift my lamp beside the golden door!

    Our country was founded as a refuge from oppression. These are the values that our country was founded on. Read it in full if you would like. Here are some key points:

    We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

    --That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed,

    --That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

    Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.

    You can read the rest of the document, but that's enough to get to this point. Our country was founded on specific values - that everyone has the right to Life, Liberty and the pursuit of happiness. It doesn't say that "only straight, white Christians" have the right to those things. It says all men have the right to those things.

    We see a presidential candidate speaking of putting up walls to keep Mexicans out. Banning Muslims from entering our country and even proposing to do surveillance of Mosques. Not only that, he has promoted violence more than once, including seeming to tell 2nd amendment supporters to go after his opponent. He has a history of bashing women in interviews, and basically said that women in the armed forces get raped because "that's what happens when they put men and women together." He also said, when asked if his daughter were to be sexually harassed at work, "I would like to think she would find another career or find another company if that was the case." Leaving it up to the woman to have to leave her career rather than punishing the perpetrator for doing the harassment.

    How did a majority of United States citizens in the Republican Party elect such a candidate? Where did our values go?


1 comment
  • Tiffany B I think the value problem comes from the loss of a family unit and the family unit, however that is designed should be talking to each other. Decades ago, we all use to gather at the dinner table and talk about our days, now most of us are running on...  more