One of my favorite Winston Churchill quotes goes as follows: “The truth is incontrovertible. Malice may attack it, ignorance may deride it, but in the end, there it is.” Did you notice the subtle difference there in the title? I didn’t say America reaps what America sows, nor did I say America reaps what its government sows. Rather, I specifically said, America reaps what American’s sow. We are a representative Democracy with a free market which means sooner or later, regardless of the time it takes to come to fruition, American’s get what they want.
Now, I know that there are those that would claim America is somehow not what it used to be. People believe that our government is no longer representative of the people and the market is no longer free. Now I will grant you that there are indeed corrupting influences on both the government and the market. However, when you look the world over, you will not find a systems as representative and free as ours.
In addition, there has been much maligning recently of the institutions of government. The Supreme Court has been roasted by both conservatives and liberals depending on how it happened to rule. The President and Congress, well they always have been fair game for political and personal vitriol. The free press has been indicted as not free indeed, but beholden to corporate interest.
However, having traveled to various parts of the world and seen much it had to offer its citizens, I would state, that we are blessed beyond measure with our systems. I am not saying they are perfect. In fact these systems are infected with potentially fatal flaws coursing through their veins. This flaw? Imperfect humans. How many of these humans are imperfect? I’m sorry to report the infection rate is 100%.
I believe in America and am as patriotic as anyone. I fought for this country in Iraq as a Marine and in fact my life has been dedicated to serving others to one degree or another for the sum of my adult life. Americans by and large are good people, educated, and have much to offer one another. This is fortunate as I mentioned before, sooner or later, American’s get what American’s want.
Sometimes it takes time. Perhaps decades even. But overtime, both the representative government and the market will reflect the desires of Americans. This is true on issues ranging from moral issues to what kind of cereal we buy. The government as an institution doesn’t somehow become immoral in of itself. Rather, slowly and sure, if the American people begin to shift their minds on a moral issue, the government and market will follow suit.
Whether you think this a good thing or a bad thing given a particular issue is entirely up to you. But come to terms with it, America gets what American’s want. You might decry what is happening to America, but I submit to you the better response is, What is happening to Americans?
Forever Sowing, Forever Reaping
Since America has been around as a nation, I offer this analysis. Americans are always sowing and always reaping. They are rarely immediately reaping what they are currently sowing, but over time, make no mistake, one reaps what they sow. This is certainly true even for the words and emotions we stir over time.
If people use their voice to constantly decry the police authorities and claim that every officer is out to trample their rights, then that is sowing and it will indeed reap an outcome. Perhaps that outcome will be the dutiful check of the reach and scope of local police authority. Or perhaps, just perhaps, the manner in which one make’s such claims inflames fringe elements of society to the point they intentionally set out to kill a police officer who just wanted to keep people safe and return home to his family that night. After all, each local police officer is an individual American as unique as you and I. They are not cloned Storm troopers.
If in political opposition, misinformation, lies, and conspiracies become the currency of popular support then don’t be surprised when worthy ideas are lost and discredited by centrist America. Just because you think that you are garnering popular support doesn’t actually mean so. Are you just rallying the people who already thought the very same thing or are you engaging others in these worthy ideas. You might just be reaping what is being sown.
America is somewhat evenly divided between conservative leaning people and liberal leaning people. Our elections with back and forth party control attest to this. Personally, I don’t see any future where one party overthrows the other on a permanent bases. Typically both conservatives and liberals get greedy when they rule too long and they inevitably reap what they are sowing. But thankfully our American system doesn’t mean they reap revolution, just a pummeling at the polls. Our Constitution is cool like that.
So without exception, we are all sowing and we will all inevitably reap. No matter how opposed you may be to an issue, if it’s what the bulk of Americans want, then they will get it. If that bothers you, then I suggest you start sowing real ideas, real conversation, and real outcomes. A starving person will know a fake piece of bread the second they take a bite. So too will people hungry for real ideas and real change know shallow sensationalism when they taste. So I’ll leave you with the Churchill quote one last time. “The truth is incontrovertible. Malice may attack it, ignorance may deride it, but in the end, there it is.” So here is sowing a harvest that feeds the future of the best system of government and market on the planet.
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