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The Direction of the United States of America - Are We Really Doing The Future A Favor?

Updated on January 15, 2015

Technically, I fall into that category known as a "Baby Boomer", one of the millions of babies born between 1946 and 1964. Collectively we are recognized as the most successful generation in the history of the United States.

Excuse me while I beg to differ.

While we may be amongst the most monetarily successful, or perhaps the most politically successful, or even the most successful in terms of career achievements, but I ask you: how successful have we been in translating that into success in the family?

What do I mean by success in the family? I mean have we passed our morals, our goals, our intentions forward as they were laid down by our Founding Fathers? Do we still believe:

All men are created equal?

That God made man in his image?

Crime deserves punishment?

Honor Thy Father and Thy Mother?

Basically, do we believe in the Bible and what it teaches us?

I understand that religion has changed as the years have passed, and it seems as though each day brings another religion invented by mere mortals, but really, do we not believe for the most part in a single Supreme Being? But I will not stop there, I ask if the morals we learned, sometimes at the cost of our ability to remain seated comfortably for a while, have been passed on to our children, and they to theirs? Are they intact in believing that we should not break the laws of our nations, that we should treat one another with respect, that we should care for one another and help when and where we can?

I fear we have failed in this endeavor to a degree never seen before.

I work in a service industry job where I deal with John Q. Public on a daily basis. I listen to the reasons why their families should receive special treatment, why their children are in need of better opportunities far beyond those given to other children. I have heard why one person deserves something both outside the parameters of fairness and beyond the scope of my position to fulfill.

And it comes from every corner of the spectrum, not simply the affluent and rich, nor the poor and downtrodden.

It feels as though everyone believes their situation is worthy of ignoring rules and regulations, or breaking long-standing traditions, of operating illegally in the eyes of the law to give someone something beyond what most people receive.

And I ask you: when did we become a nation of whiners? Of thieves? Of law breakers rather than law abiders?

Of criminals hiding behind the façade of righteousness?

Ferguson, Missouri bore that fact out when a person breaking the law was shot and killed when he refused to follow an officer's direction, yet his community fought, and continues to fight, for us to believe he was innocent, a man murdered rather than a man killed for attacking the officer.

When did the guilty become the innocent? And when did those in charge of protecting the innocent become guilty of doing what we ask them to do, then be found guilty in the public's opinion for following their training, their job description, their morals?

Barry Bonds - Baseball's Home Run "King"?
Barry Bonds - Baseball's Home Run "King"? | Source

This feeling is rampant in America today, with fewer and fewer people actually accepting blame for themselves for their behavior. Athletes, making millions of dollars, most making more in a month than many of us will make in our lives feel privileged, as though they are above the law. We have wife beaters, drug users, murderers in sports today and many of our young people look up to them. Why? Because they can catch a ball? Throw a ball? What happened to us America?

We also have those in sports who feel as though any measure that benefits them in the end justifies the means. Case in point: Baseball and the Hall Of Fame. Former players such as Barry Bonds attempt to justify their using illegal substances in order to heal faster or be stronger as being just fine, while basically calling those who played the game by its rules as being, shall we say. less than intelligent. They cannot be blamed for cheating and hitting the ball harder and farther, pumping up their statistics to the point where another who hits well, but not as well as the cheater, that they cannot be considered as a viable candidate for inclusion into the HOF when their numbers pale in comparison to the cheaters. The sentiment of the cheater is "They should have used too" rather than "I cheated when others didn't so I understand if you don't want me in the Hall.

Others who may have broken the rules of the game remain excommunicated years later (read: Pete Rose and Shoeless Joe Jackson); so why should these current law breakers be any different?

And yet they ask we look up to them still as role models, as models and examples of how the game has changed over the years. And now, some are beginning to come around to their way of thinking. Sports writers are now beginning to say "So what?" to their scandal, their besmirching the game many still love. "Just put them into the Hall Of Fame and give them their own wing" many say. "We can't pretend they didn't play, nor can we ignore their achievements." Really? Why not? We still are not allowed to put Rose in and he did nothing like what these "athletes" have done?

It doesn't end there. We have parents who refuse to hold their child accountable, preferring to label their child as Oppositional Defiance Disorder when in reality all they are are a bunch of children whose parents refused to actually be parents, who now have children who refuse to follow directions for so long that no one can now reason with them due to their childish behavior. Many times (not all, I admit) this is nothing more than a good, old fashioned temper tantrum. And they are allowed to do this because the courts have taken away the right, the power to hold these children accountable. One cannot spank, one cannot even withhold privileges anymore. A court case recently pitted a child and her grandparents against her parents, because she wanted to go to a prestigious and costly college. The grandparents encouraged this and the courts agreed, due to a ruling that states divorced parents are required to provide the means to attend college. Forget the fact that if they remained married, she would not have this recourse.

If it's legal to withhold this if married, why is it illegal to withhold it when divorced?

Portrait of a child murderer. Her father.
Portrait of a child murderer. Her father. | Source

And then we have the tragic case involving a 5 year old little girl thrown off of a bridge by her father. The father was addicted to drugs and alcohol; the mother also an addict and living with a man who beat her. Both parties abused children as found by the courts. Both parties had been before judges and Family Services and been released, with findings of no peril to the child. So who do we blame for her death? The father? The mother? The courts? DFS?

When did we lose sight of the fact that children are to be cared for, cherished? They are not tools to be used between parents who can no longer give love to one another; they are not punching bags either. WE chose to bring them into this world; consciously, deliberately, on purpose through OUR decisions. The child did not arrive spontaneously, unexpectedly. Yet society treats them as less than pets in some circumstances, by not providing sufficient training for parents to be, by not requiring parents to fulfill basic needs in life before committing to the next twenty years of sacrifice for someone other than themselves. Pets require a license; driving does as well. Hunting, fishing have requirements. Yet for the most precious thing many of us will ever see, hold, love there is nothing - nothing required to assure this person we choose to create will be cared for, loved, provided, cherished.

Well America, what do you think? Have we fulfilled our Founding Forefather's hopes for our society? Do you think they are proud of what we have done to their creation, the United States of America? What would they say if they walked the streets of our country today?

"You've done well; this is a country to be proud of". Or...

"My God, what have you done?"

Personally, I think, no I know it would be the latter. No more God in our country; people serving themselves not each other; selfishness greed and hate everywhere; more and more people living off the government while fewer and fewer work to supply the money to run the government; a ruling class not unlike the one that they escaped from, battled against, prevailed against in creating our country? Do you really think we have served their memory; done their memory proud? Or have we let them down? And in doing so, have we also dug a hole so large and so deep that our children, and our children's children may not be able to get out of it? Have we torn asunder the very fabric that runs through each of our lives and tossed it aside in favor of this, this cesspool we now call America? Think about what we are leaving to our children, what our legacy will be?

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    • Marie Flint profile image

      Marie Flint 2 years ago from Jacksonville, Florida USA

      This is an interesting read--a good rant, I would say. Much of what you say, sadly, is true. I'll never forget one Sunday several years ago when I heard two young boys arguing over a bicycle. I looked out from my balcony to see the presumed owner of the bike refuse to share it with the neighbor boy. "I want $10!" the boy shouted. I couldn't believe it--what happened to friendship and sharing? It was a pure case of misplaced values. Sure, one could argue that the young owner had a right to refuse use of his bicycle, but the tone of words was done with belligerence, not rational thinking--and $10? Really?

      When I did substitute teaching, I ran into a similar problem. Even a class of fourth graders were having an ill-tempered with the counters that were distributed for their math class. A boy initiated throwing a plastic counter at a girl, then she angrily threw it back at him. (Come on, kids, give me a break!) But, you know, I did enjoy teaching the senior science class, the middle schoolers' music class, the special education class (they had their routine down), and overseeing the student committee to arrange the bookshelves in the library. After 100 hours of substitute teaching, though, I quit.

      So, yes, this is the kind of stuff we, as a society, have to deal with on a daily basis. You know, though, there are a lot of good people in this world--the ladies in the quilt guilds, the food servers at the church, and gardeners in community gardens. Some people simply enjoy helping others, and they are real.

      I believe that the greater light far outshines the disgusting events displayed in the media. I choose to focus on the goodness that lies deep in the heart of everyone of God's children. Sure, we witness many actions that could be classified as irrational or downright evil, but we must not indulge ourselves in those problems to the point that we forget who we really are. Kindness begets kindness--just keep doing it. Eventually the shadows will fade away before God's love.

      Voted interesting.

    • Fred Arnold profile image

      Fred Arnold 2 years ago from Clearwater, FL

      "Ferguson, Missouri bore that fact out when a person breaking the law was shot and killed when he refused to follow an officer's direction, yet his community fought, and continues to fight, for us to believe he was innocent, a man murdered rather than a man killed for attacking the officer."

      Except there is evidence to show that the officer shot him while his hands were up. Blood spatter, the way he was laying on the ground, the fact that he had no weapon whatsoever. All examples can be found in the extensive documents provided by the supreme court decision. Sure, they probably got into it. That does not give a person the right to shoot an unarmed person with their hands up. And the problem is, that with all the evidence to a different situation, the trial never went to court. I don't care if whatshisface was a convicted felon; if you murder someone, you murder someone and there should be a trial.

      Here, if you are incredulous about my statement, read up on it:

      http://hosted.ap.org/specials/interactives/_docume...

      I've read majority of those documents, but if you'd rather not, here's some people who have done it for you:

      https://storify.com/kegill/the-ferguson-grand-jury...

      I also disagree with this statement:

      "more and more people living off the government while fewer and fewer work to supply the money to run the government"

      It is due to the corrupt nature of politics and business that it is that way. And, as of 2013 statistics which are carrying over to 2014, the amount of people living in poverty has been declining:

      https://www.census.gov/hhes/www/poverty/about/over...

      Other than that, I do agree, even though I do not believe in God. The morals one learns from a religiously tolerant church is outstanding. But many religious affiliations preach hate, so even religion is mired in the darkness of the human condition.

      Good read, keep it up!

      -Fred

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Bev is the eternal optimist in our family, and she would say this country continues to do amazing things, and she is right...but so are you, and me, when we say this country has failed to fulfill its sacred promises, and that is a sin against humanity. We hold such promise and yet we continually fail to reach our lofty goals.

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 2 years ago from Central Florida

      Mike, it's so tragic that so many people who have no business raising children bring them into the world anyway. Our children are not commodities. Nor are they liabilities. They are precious gems and deserve the best we can give them and teach them.

      Fortunately, there are still a number of us who believe in the values that founded this country and made our families strong. I happen to be one of them. I know you are, too.