I don’t want to write about politics here, but we have a responsibility to our neighbors. Today there is a strong political narrative that denies communal responsibility, and it is destroying us.
This destructive narrative ironically clothes itself in individual responsibility. It tries to convince us that our only responsibility is to ourselves. It says greed is what makes our country great. These attitudes wouldn’t fly in a kindergarten class, yet somehow, after years of lies, grown adults perpetuate these ideas as if it was moral high ground. Of course we must be responsible for ourselves, but that’s NO EXCUSE for shirking our communal responsibility!
The narrative then undermines our entire American community by corrupting the founding belief around which we organize ourselves: a government of we the people. Representative government is the foundation of our country, yet this narrative treats government as if it was, is, and always will be some other entity separate from us. In doing this it tries to convince us to give away our own power by denying that it’s ours. This narrative corrupts and denies our communal responsibility to grow all our children into citizens in a safe environment. It denies our responsibility to the health and well being of our elders. It denies our responsibility our environment. It denies our communal responsibility almost completely.
We own a country! Through out human history, how often can people say that! Every citizen has an ownership stake in this country and holds the responsibilities of ownership as well. We can make this into whatever we want! Sure, if we want to, we can take our nation and give it back to an aristocratic class. We can leave our elderly to die of malnutrition. We can abandon our children to poverty, drugs, and gangs. We can protect what we have from everyone else until we’ve exploited everything we can get out of it and it dies. But how lazy, stupid, and irresponsible is that?
We own a country! Let’s actually make it GREAT!!! That means taking responsibility not only for our own well being but for the justice, liberty, and opportunity of our neighbors. That means protecting our neighbors rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness as if it was our own… because it is! That means not limiting our aims to some dry fantasies of a past that never was, but instead to dream big and empower each other to do great things that in turn empower others!
So, let’s not be afraid to try. The worst we can do is give up. Deep down we are better than what we have been. So as the prophets of old used to say, let’s turn, change direction, aka: repent. Let us lay down the cynicism of servants and take up the yoke of royalty because that is what we are: A nation of royals – with all the rights and responsibilities that go with it.