The Day America Died!
By H. J. Harris, author of “Solving The Race Issue In America.”
As we close out the year 2020 and prepare for the new year, I ask myself,
“Where is the America I was taught to trust and believe in?”
“Did America die? When did this happen?”
Things are taking place right now in our country that I thought could never happen in this land of the free and home of the brave.
Perhaps America died when certain leaders and their enablers refused to accept the findings of the US Supreme Court and the Attorney General. These leaders refused to accept the conclusions of the Election Security Agency and virtually every other court and state election board that the 2020 election was fair, proper, and free of election fraud.
Perhaps America died when the validated vote of the American people – the cornerstone of our democracy – is disputed by certain leaders with baseless, false, unsupported allegations of election fraud.
Perhaps America died when it became clear that certain leaders cared more about political advantage or philosophy than they cared about the suffering of the American people.
I found it hard to understand how certain leaders could assert that an extra $600 or $1,200 would make suffering, jobless Americans lazy, complacent, and not seek employment. Can these leaders not see, from their high and lofty political towers, the suffering and death that Americans are experiencing in a pandemic that shows no mercy?
Perhaps America died when certain leaders for selfish reasons, or because they have so little faith in the American people, hid the truth or lied about the existence and true impact of the deadly corona virus. Had they forgotten that Americans are strong resilient people who have faced the hardships and challenges of two world wars and many other horrific assaults on the American dream?
Perhaps America died when the free press was attacked with claims of fake news and alternate facts.
The free press that American has relied upon to provide news based on truth and justice is undermined and discredited to create confusion and uncertainty. This is the same free press that held the powerful accountable – in Watergate – or called attention to suffering and injustice – in the civil rights era.
Perhaps America died when a white policeman murdered George Floyd by kneeling on his neck for over eight minutes. The world watched in real time as George Floyd cried for help and called for his dead mother, as the life drained from his body onto a hard, cold Minneapolis street.
Certain leaders chose to ignore George Floyd’s murder and the protests against systemic racism. Instead, they chose to focus on reports of looting and burning by a few protesters – deflecting attention from the cancer that has festered on the soul of America for over 240 years.
Perhaps America died when it was acceptable for armed citizens to threaten public officials doing their lawful jobs, or invade state capitals, while our political and religious leaders silently acquiesce and do nothing.
Perhaps America died when politicians and political parties made concerted efforts to disenfranchise black, brown, red and poor Americans from the sanctity of their votes.
Perhaps America died when untruths and lies are told with such passion and frequency that good people believe them as truth to act upon.
Perhaps America died when good people must be brave, courageous, and fearless to stand up for what is right – to stand up for the values that America claims to represent.
Perhaps America died when certain leaders wave the American flag and copies of the Constitution as true patriots, when inside they are hypocrites and hungry wolves seeking to devour the last vestiges of truth and honor that the founding fathers, with their flaws, proclaimed so clearly.
Perhaps America died at Sandy Hook Elementary School when 20 children and 6 staff members were killed by a gunman who showed no mercy. When the American public cried out for sensible gun control, they were arrogantly ignored by politicians who were more beholding to the gun lobby than to the will of the American people.
As I reflect on the history and spirit of America, the high ideal and authenticity of the American promise has consistently and continuously been assaulted and attacked by the forces of evil; while political, religious, and spiritual leaders stand by in silent acquiescence as the Golden Rule is abandoned, forgotten, and trampled underfoot.
Abraham Lincoln understood this challenge when he said, “America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.”
Lincoln proclaimed that a house divided against itself cannot stand.
Many years before Lincoln uttered these powerful words, the die was cast. The founding fathers ignored the sin of slavery and incorporated it into the creation of this nation. That house, divided against itself, became the seed that grew into the America we now experience today.
History reveals that these founding fathers were enlightened men who understood the spiritual dilemma. But they accepted it, participated, and perpetuated it in search of a new government.
They understood that there was a more perfect union, but they could not create it because of their own addiction to or acceptance of slavery.
For over 240 years, America has been engaged in a battle with itself over this spiritual dilemma.
A dilemma so profound that over 600,000 Americans were killed in the civil war.
A dilemma so profound that our hallowed institutions from the Supreme Court to local governments and agencies struggle to resolve it.
A single blow does not kill the giant. A thousand small blows of hypocrisy, lies, deception, injustice, and insincere apologies weaken the giant until it is no more.
Perhaps America dies a little each day as the smoldering embers of racism and injustice are fanned by certain leaders who proclaim the American dream for some, while subjecting other Americans to unspeakable suffering of fear, poverty, injustice, and a pandemic of death.
Perhaps America dies when our citizens, our political leaders, and most of all our religious leaders stand by in resounding silence, as our country turns it back on the Golden Rule – do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
Our children are watching. What example shall we give?
We have a choice. We as Americans can be the “better angles” that Abraham Lincoln described in his First Inaugural Address: we can follow the light and walk the talk so eloquently set forth by the founding fathers – “that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”
Or we can continue in the darkness of bitter division and build our house upon the sands of hypocrisy, injustice, and fear … and when the rains descend, and floods come, and the winds blow and beat upon the house that is America, it will fall, and great will be the fall of it.
When did America die?
The answer America is not in our stars, but in ourselves.
(Learn about the BIG READ at: www.solvingtheraceissue.net. Students will read daily from “Solving The Race Issue In America” from Martin Luther King Day through Black History Month.)
(More information at: www.solvingtheraceissue.com )
© 2020 LifeSkill Institute, Inc., PO Box 302, Wilmington, NC 28402
Dr. Herbert (H. J.) Harris, CEO LifeSkill Institute, Inc., PO Box 302, Wilmington, NC 28402
Phone: 800-570-4009 Email: [email protected]