Our brothers and sisters in Canada are moved to make a public statement of support and transformation. We are in desperate need of something like this in the USA.
We've moved from a values-driven, caring, compassionate society to one that is divided. This division can be traced back at least to political machinations begun in the 1960s that created a schism in our country where the very values that should bind us all are treated with disdain and are mocked - not by a small group of misguided and warped bigots in secret, but in public and with frequent agreement and affirmation. The very idea that "political correctness" could be mocked by people who claim as their heritage a Christian set of values is patently ludicrous, yet we see this as commonplace in daily conversations.
How did this happen? It's very clear how it was done. It began as a deliberate manipulation of the thoughts and minds of good, solid people to create in them a distrust and abhorrence of their neighbors and fellow countrymen - those upon whom we all inter-depend. Many have been led, slowly, gradually, without seeming to be led, toward a set of beliefs that would never have been thinkable when the process was begun years ago, but has become acceptable through this incremental evolution.
Conservatives were well aware of this shift and its bad effects even in the early years. In a 1994 interview, by then retired Senator Barry Goldwater said, "When you say 'radical right' today, I think of these moneymaking ventures by fellows like Pat Robertson and others who are trying to take the Republican party and make a religious organization out of it. If that ever happens, kiss politics goodbye."
In response to Moral Majority founder Jerry Falwell's opposition to the nomination of Sandra Day O'Connor to the Supreme Court, of which Falwell had said, "Every good Christian should be concerned", Goldwater retorted: "Every good Christian ought to kick Falwell right in the ass."
I find myself appalled and dismayed at the shocking lack of compassion and trust and respect we see routinely displayed in our media's coverage of the political system, everyday interactions between everyday people, and in the entertainment we all consume. We've sunk to new lows with each passing decade of my life, and we seem destined to continue to do so, slowly abolishing in our society the very values that made this country what it was and is no longer.
Our Founding Fathers would be instantly disgusted if they were to appear here and now and witness what we've done with their imperfect, and yet powerful and promising beginning. I wish I could somehow show the perspective I've been gradually acquiring to everyone. I believe it would show the stark, bitter contrast between what we all think we want and what many of us are working toward because of ideations perverted for short-term political gain that have gradually taken on a life of their own and as such may well destroy our society.