23 December, 2009
I hold these Truths . . . .
America's birth announcement began with the words, "We hold these Truths...." Therefore, authentic patriotism for the American Republic should begin with a declaration of the truths upon which it is based and from which if flows. Furthermore, these truths cannot be snatched from thin air, they must be grounded in the founding documents and enduring saga of our nation. This grounding is achieved by continual, committed citizen action.
The Republic is not a thing. It is not a place. The Republic is an ideal. It is a font and a force. The Republic creates a field of equality, freedom, and justice in which people, as citizens, unite to do together what they could never do separately. So long as the Republic holds its rightful primacy in the minds and hearts of the people, all problems are ultimately soluble and all wrongs may be rectified. While “We, the People”, remember where our loyalties most properly lay, the “better angels of our nature” have the power to impel us to fulfill the last, best hope of humankind. The Republic exists insofar as it does exist in the minds and hearts of the citizenry. If these minds and hearts ever become estranged from the Republic, if the actions of the citizenry fail to animate the Republic for a prolonged period, the Republic will die. Any enduring forms, such as political offices and routines will be no more vital than fossils and artifacts.