Wednesday, March 15, 2006

The American Way?

As I come to recognize more aspects of our society, I’m more compelled to reject it. I love this country, I am an extreme patriot. I have flown the flag, literally, everyday of my life since I was 12, either inside or outside. I host a patriotic website and I love what this country stands for. Or at least what it stood for. I hope the past tense in not necessary here. I hope we still stand for the freedoms, morals, and ethics that we have always upheld. That remains to be seen, however, in this “pop culture” society in which we live.

As I see it, two separate things are happening here. One, the American people are becoming more and more superficial and materialistic. Both of which opens the door for big business marketing and political propaganda to sway and steer public opinion and lifestyle. That direction of steerage seems to be to become further superficial and materialistic at all cost. The second thing is that the government is somewhat out of control. The government seems no longer to be representative of the people. Our American government system seems to have forsaken the very freedoms, morals, and ethics for witch it stands. I am, however, reluctant to say that this is the result of the government not listening to the people. Quite the contrary, the problem is the people aren’t saying anything. Nothing at all. We don’t vote, we don’t demonstrate, and we don’t write to our local senators. Hell most people don’t even know who their state representatives are, let alone how to reach them.

This lack of interest and action results in two possible things happening. One, the minority rules. By the majorities lack of voting and action the minority’s voice is heard and taken for the majority. And two, the government is left to it’s own devices and unchecked. We are all human, politicians included (although some would argue otherwise), and as humans power is corrupting. Left unchecked, that corruption will run awry and allow influence from improper sources. Such as, say, corporate conglomerates, oil execs, and the rest of the power elites. Where should the blame fall? Whose fault is it? Look in the mirror my fellow Americans. It’s you, it’s your fault, it’s your neighbor’s fault, it’s my fault, and it’s the fault of the American public at large. It’s your inaction and lack of interest in the state of things as they are today, the state of the union. So what’s the union? We are, you and I, our brothers and sisters, neighbors and friends. We have become so disconnected from our own governmental system that we hardly remember who we are and what our position and responsibility is.

Now I’ll be the first to admit that throughout my life my distaste and disdain for politics has kept me fairly removed from the process. I rarely vote and I rarely know anything about the issues or platforms up for debate and voting. Regardless of the reason behind it, I think this is fairly representative of the general population.

As I awoke from my relative slumber and looked around at the state of the American society I’ve been living in, I must say I was disappointed. I don’t agree with the direction of American culture, and I don’t agree with the direction of American government such that I can not abide the actions of either. What then am I to do as a conscientious American citizen? Civil disobedience? Passive resistance? I don’t have this answer; I don’t know the most effective method to affect change. As I’ve said I’m new to this whole activist thing. I’m simply researching and learning as I go. I do know, however, that anything you do to make your voice and your opinions heard is a step in the right direction. Some might say; “what is my opinion worth?” “Who am I to say what’s right?” You’re an American damn it! Your opinion counts! Make it heard! If the opinion of the people, the average Joe and Jane Shmoe, don’t count for anything, then the system has failed and perhaps America no longer stands for the ideals it once did.

I sincerely hope this isn’t the case and I refuse to accept the notion that it is. I will go to my grave as a devout free American upholding the ideals of the American way. I will go to my grave fighting for the freedom, morals, ethics, and principals laid out by the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. I will live my life the best way I know how and in accordance with these same ideals.

I AM AN AMERICAN and I… Pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the Republic for which it stands, one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.



At 12:50 PM, Blogger Musings of a Demented Mind said...

I've recently come to realize that my "distaste and disdain for politics" is/was somewhat misguided. My real problem is with the media's hype surrounding political issues. In actuality, my contempt rests with the media’s virtual non-stop "coverage" of the issues at hand. Every time I turn the channel there it is again on another news station, shoving it in my face and telling me what to think.
I now realize that issues themselves are unobjectionable, but I don’t like being told what to do or think. When I turn on the television set that is exactly what happens; I’m being told “these are the issues you should pay attention to,” “this is what you should think about them.” They repeat this message not only weekly and daily but some do so over and over within the same show. The issues get so saturated with coverage that I’ve rebelled against them telling me what to do by rejecting their ideas and ignoring the issues altogether.
I see now this was not a good choice and I’ve since tried to correct my behavior. Simply because someone tries to force their opinions on me doesn’t mean the issue doesn’t deserve attention.
It seems as though I’ve traced another bad habit to a common source; the media.


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