Where do we go from here?
Bailouts, rescues and recovery are just the first steps out of the wilderness, back to the true heart of the American Dream. We are not as young as we used to be, 8 long years have aged us. It is not that we haven't seen this before, it is we just haven't experienced it in such a personal way. (And I don't mean our soldiers.)
Our parents and our grandparents did all they could to protect us from the storm of economic disaster, and now we have come to the precipice, led by greed and denial of our own making. Either by non-involvement or a sense of disenfranchisement coupled with a lack of concern, or possibly a blind trust in our elected officials and the punditry on tv and radio, we have succumbed to the siren song of complacency that forfeits honor and truth, to be replaced by divisiveness and a confusion of the soul of America.
Just watching this bitter Presidential campaigning is enough to show us we have gone too far. (I am not blameless in this endeavor. I am an old partisan fighter and have bloodied my pen.)
It is time to stop, take a look at ourselves and look to the generations that will follow us.
What will be our legacy?
We have our best and brightest in danger on foreign shores, and no matter how hard we try and deny it, we sent them there under false pretenses. We turned on them when they were in Afghanistan, seeking those that injured us, and we sent them into a fiery cauldron, unprotected, ill led, and lied to them about their mission. And they are still there. For their sake and future generations of warriors, we must right this wrong. We must also take a look at the injured that have returned, and our responsibility to see they have the best that money can buy. We have not done that yet, but we have allowed our dead heroes to be returned under cover of darkness for political gain of the ruling party. This must be addressed and not allowed to happen again. We must look to our motives and our motivators.
We have closed an eye to torture and accepted it as a reality of life. A reality that is given life only by our disregard of honor. This too must be addressed and retired to the graveyard from which it arose. This cannot be our legacy to our youth.
We have allowed unscrupulous and greedy people to dominate our economy, and now we must, at our own expense, repair the damage, try to minimize its effects, and make sure that it does not happen again. This must be done for the generations that follow us along the path laid out by our founders.
We have given up our freedoms for an illusion of safety. We must strike down the restrictions placed on personal freedoms, if not for our sake, for the sake of our children.
We must make Government accountable and transparent and listen to the many voices that come forth from this dream of equality and brotherhood. (As many political parties as possible should be our mantra, for where else in the world should all voices be heard?)
I believe in America and the people that make it great.
I believe they know which wolf to feed, and that meal will be served on election day.
The vote is the antidote.