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Friday, 9 July 2010

Sad Thoughts on American Independence Day 2010

(Written July 4 2010)

As I write this, it is the afternoon of July 4th, 2020, American Independence Day once again. I have seen many such celebrations come and go, and there is a definite change that has taken place over the years.

When I was very young, the US was embroiled in WW II, and Independence Day was observed with a sort of grim determination, reminding everyone that we were at war. It was a war that had to be won, we simply could not afford to loose that war. That war was won, and the Allies began the process of rebuilding themselves and the conquered nations of the Axis as well. Almost immediately they found themselves in the Cold War, the seemingly endless battle of wits with the Soviet Union and Red China. There was the idea that communism must be physically “contained.” This led to the Korean War, and later to the Vietnamese War.

Attitudes toward support for war were changing in the US throughout this period. During WW II, as far as I can tell, there was 100% support for the war effort. I am unable to find anyone who dissented, although people tell me that there were some. They must have been very few in number. By the time of the Korean War, Americans were war weary, and it was harder to generate support. Even so, they went, and there was very little objection or lack of support. I was personally familiar with a number of young men who were sacrificed to this war.
When the Vietnam War came around, there was much less support for the war. The way that American involvement was begun was considered by many to be illegitimate, with no clear entry point, but by having Americans simply serving as field advisors to the South Vietnamese Army who gradually got the US sucked into the battle. There was much question about why America should be involved, what US interests were in this area, and just why America should be expending lives there. Particularly on college campuses, the war was rather soundly rejected, and those who supported it were ostracized for their support. It was not seen as a matter of patriotism to support the Vietnamese War, but as simply war mongering. Of course, many of those doing the ostracizing were not very clear on the concept of patriotism either.

The military draft was ended and an all volunteer military was created which was supposed to solve many problems. Perhaps it did solve some, but it meant that the military now tended to come primarily from the segments of society that were otherwise unable to get ahead in life. They did put in place some educational requirements, but they have tended to look the other way on those requirements at times when recruitments have been difficult to achieve. This has led to a surge in number of minorities and women in the military, neither of them being good for the long term effectiveness of the military. This has been the US military that operated in Desert Storm in Kuwait in the early 1990s and again now in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Throughout this whole period, American education has been under a process of transformation, beginning in the 1960s. Prior to that time, American education had been heavily fact based, focusing the attainment of necessary skills and reasoning ability, with rather tight discipline in the school classrooms. This is not to imply that students were beaten or abused, but there was no foolishness in class; school was about learning, not acting out fantasies. There was little if any concern for “social promotion.” One great advantage, however, was that there were no special needs children in the classroom; they were provided for in separate facilities.

Beginning in the 1960s and continuing today, there was a move to integrate all children into the classroom, including the most disabled and disruptive right along with the well behaved and advanced students. This was thought to be “fair,” in the sense that it taught each of the students to get along with all of the others, both brighter and not so bright as themselves. The fact that it played havoc with the learning process was just passed over lightly. There were many other innovations in the way mathematics would be taught, Marxism would be worked into the curriculum through social studies and several other places, the study of traditional English literature would be gradually discarded in favor of contemporary authors with a Marxist flavor, etc.

One particularly critical area is that of history that would be gradually re–written to completely re–invent the history of our nation. Instead of the glorious true history of a modern nation carved from the wilderness which I was taught, today’s young people are taught that the nation was well developed already by peaceful, nature–loving native peoples who were slaughtered like animals at a packing house. With regard to the native American Indians, the truth is that many were killed fighting the white man just as they had traditionally fought among themselves. They were nomadic peoples, with the exception of the pueblo Indians, and they did little or nothing to develop North America. This is why, even as late as the early 20th century, there was new land to be broken, arable land that had never been plowed. The America built by white people has provided unparalleled opportunity for all of the people of North America, including the native American Indians and the American Blacks. What is taught, however, is that America is a land of oppression for these peoples, a place where they continue to suffer. This is true, to some extent, because they have been given the opportunity and encouraged by some to develop a mentality of entitlement, rather than seize the opportunity to work and achieve. Those who have worked have done well, but those who have felt entitled do suffer because there are never enough government handouts to satisfy them.

So our history has been corrupted in the mind of our young people, and many of our young people even disavow their own history. Too many of them do not even begin to know it. One of the popular late night comics, Jay Leno, has demonstrated this in a devastating way with some public interviews shown in this video:

As Leno’s video shows, the minorities do not know American history, with the exception of the older black man. But even the white people do not know it either. These people with no sense of the history of this country certainly cannot claim any real sense of ownership of the country. It seems likely that this is why they have no objection to the vast hoards of illegal aliens streaming across the southern boarder. For these people, those aliens are not taking anything that belongs to them. These people do not see that they have a stake in America. America has never really belonged to these people at all.

Being much older, I do not see it in that way. I know where my family started out in the western Carolinas in the late 1700s, worked their way across Tennessee and Alabama in the early 1800s, and eventually wound up in south Texas by the time the Civil War ended. I know that my great–grandfather was a Superintendent on the King Ranch in south Texas and I know where my grandfather farmed and worked for the railroad. I have tried to pass this sense of ownership on to my children, the idea that we are Americans because our people came to this land and helped to build it into what it is today. Our blood is in this soil, and our bones will be in it some day soon. This is our land; it belongs to no one else.

The evidence seems to be that we are losing this land simply because we have not passed on the idea that it is ours. We have not taught the true history of America, but have allowed a pack of lies to be taught instead. We have not instilled a sense of ownership in our people, an understanding that it is up to each and every one of us to maintain this country. Our people think of the country as belonging to “them” and that everything is controlled by “them.” They fail to realize that “them” is actually “us,” that we the people are the ones who control this country. So they have no sense of ownership, so sense of wanting to protect what is their own. This country belongs to “them.” If we cannot turn this around, we have lost the battle.