The United States is in trouble. Our republic has become riddled with political parties interested only in party power, politicians who care only for their party and their public legacy, politicians who misunderstand the role of government, record government debt, excessive taxes, corporate welfare, political correctness, corrupt interest groups, people who expect “free” government handouts, injustices to The Constitution, the expanding nanny-state of the government, the list can go on at infinitum.
What is the cause of these issues? It could be assumed that taxes are high because we have debt. We have debt because politicians think government spending money is the answer to our economic woes. There are corrupt politicians because they are power hungry and want leadership in their parties. They want power in order to enjoy the spoils of government control. In such scenarios, it may seem obvious which is the cause and which is the effect. In reality, they are all effects. Many correlate, some compound each other, but there is one underlying cause, or root, to all of our country’s problems — citizen apathy.
In order to understand why citizen apathy is so dangerous to our country, we must first understand that our country is not a democracy, it is a republic. This means that we as individuals have power. This power is granted from God, and we allocate certain portions of this power to the government. This allocation of power occurs through our participation in the political process. If we do not participate, we forfeit our power and risk forfeiting our freedoms and liberties.
A republic is a form of self-government., giving power and responsibility to the individual citizens. Although it is our nature to take the path of least resistance, this path can lead to tyranny and a loss of freedoms. Freedom isn’t free. In order to keep our freedoms, we must truly know and defend them. If we are apathetic, we forfeit our power and ability to defend liberty, and when liberty is lost, we have no political power to regain it. Let me ask this question: is it easier to defend freedoms while we still have them, or is it easier to regain freedoms after they have been lost?
Some Effects of Apathy
Apathy results in a shift of power from the individuals to the government. The two main political parties have assumed much of this power and will do anything to retain it and to gain more. Through imperceptible stages the parties have falsely taught us that the other side is always wrong and is at fault. Through these inaccurate accusations, each party evokes blind loyalty from citizens. This divide ferments dangerous animosity directed at the supposed opposition. Often when someone learns of my mistrust and criticisms of President Obama, they assume I’m republican. I am not. Nor am I a democrat. This immediate assumption that people make of me is a result of party propaganda.
The republican and democrat party would each have us stay loyal to them and not to The Constitution. Those who are blindly loyal, those who do not research candidates and merely vote for the R’s or D’s, are facilitating the growth of party power and not enforcing the stability of our republic.
The parties have done everything to convince us that parties are necessary to run the government, to fund (and therefore control) campaigns, and to accomplish the will of the people. Do we really accept that? Are we really willing to give control to two parties, basically two entities? I don’t find that acceptable at all.
Party leaders ask for blind loyalty from constituents, but they also demand blind loyalty from the politicians. For nearly every House or Senate vote for a bill or proposal, congressional republicans vote one way, and congressional democrats vote the opposite way. If our representatives truly understood our republic and understood the substance and meaning of The Constitution, they would not vote party lines. Additionally, if we as citizens avoided apathy, we would make all efforts to ensure we elect leaders who are loyal to The Constitution.
The parties facilitate in encouraging citizens to be apathetic. The party machine is so big, it is so conniving and divisive, citizens do not know how to deal with it. We get so frustrated, we toss our hands up in the air, and become complacent with the party bickering and assume that is the way things get accomplished in Washington.
Remember, the incentive of politicians is to become elected, and once elected, their incentive changes to become re-elected. We can either change their incentive, or let them know that without hesitation, we will vote them out of office if they become a party stooge or try to tread all over The Constitution. “We The People” have the power.
We may get some honorable people into office, those that truly understand their purpose as a government officer, and those that understand the limits of government which are designated in The Constitution. How can we be sure they will remain honorable and remain loyal to The Constitution? We must elect men and women of principle. We must know the principles which guide us and find candidates whose principles most closely match our own. We need to know history and know The Constitution so that we are able to recognize candidates and politicians who also have the same understanding. If a politician sways from his or her principles, if they come anywhere near to treading on The Constitution, They must know that they will be replaced.
When we find candidates and politicians who are honorable, and do stand next to The Constitution, we must defend and support them. We should not allow party bosses, the media, or other politicians to silence their voices or discredit them.
Some of us may feel that the political machine is too big for us to change. Some of us, guided by freedoms and The Constitution, may feel the need to run for public office, but feel that we can’t make any difference in politics. To these people, I remind you that your power comes from someone bigger than yourself — God. Those who have convinced themselves that they cannot make a difference, those who desire to run for office but let their fear persuade them otherwise, deny and betray their power as an individual. Therefore, they deny and betray the power of God. Citizens need to remember God and keep Him as their center.
If we remember God, study history, know The Constitution, stand by our principles, learn about candidates and their principles, and not become or remain apathetic, our republic can be saved.
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