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Tuesday, October 25, 2016

'This Land is Our Land'

Okay, so I've made political posts on this blog before, but they've all been fairly general in nature, without targeting any specific individual! This post is a bit different, directly aimed at one of the current presidential candidates, who is not technically a politician & thus is somewhat free from the corruption normally attributed to most politicians. 'The Donald', as he is 'affectionately' called, is, according to what may be called 'The American Dream', a good businessman: although I prefer the term 'shrewd', he would doubtless make a 'better' CEO of the USA, Inc.!

Donald Trump's campaign slogan, whether officially or unofficially, is his promise to 'make America great again'! First of all, 'what does he mean by that phrase?' If he means to make her 'great' again in the sense that she has always been, ( till lately ) 'great', by world conquests, meaning 'endless war' propagated by the American Empire, then 'NO THANKS!' If however, he means to 'make America great again' in the de Tocquevillian sense, then 'kudos' to him, 'BRAVO!' Unfortunately, we can be almost certain that he leans more toward the first definition ( of 'great' ).

Most Americans who will be voting for Donald Trump, including many Christians, although the latter especially are somewhat peeved by his use of the English language & certain of his 'eccentric' mannerisms, are nonetheless enamored by his promise, as outlined above. These all want to 'make America great again', but how many of them, do you suppose, have stopped to wonder if America SHOULD be made great again! Do we really want to endure the endless wars, along with death & destruction around the world, that it would cost to make America great again, in the sense of the American Empire?

Our coinage in this nation, though under fire for the last decade or so, is 'One Nation Under God': take that for what it's worth, but it at least signifies that she was formed under Christian principles, at least in word, if not in deed! The 'god' that America serves at present may be another matter, for as we all can attest to, 'god' can signify anything from money to innumerable other idols. You may have heard that the 'pledge of allegiance' is part of a socialist plot & one might wonder if the phrase in question doesn't fall under the same shadow! He who was instrumental in developing 'the pledge' although without the addition 'under God', was a Baptist minister & 'no surprise', a Socialist as well. This leads us back to the question, 'what does Trump mean by his promise to 'make America great again'?'

Alexis de Tocqueville once observed, 'America is great because America is good, and if America ever ceases to be good, America will cease to be great.' To whatever extent, this nation WAS founded on Christian principles & although many of those principles, again, 'to whatever extent', are still at work in today's America. To a great extent, though, even certain of these principles have become 'skewed', while others seem to be in direct opposition. The events surrounding the founding of this nation might begin to shed light on the nature of the founding fathers. Without doubt, these men did what they did with the best of intentions, but one might wonder if a better solution than armed revolution might have been pursued. The wars that this country has been embroiled in since that terrible chain of events only bears witness to the fact that the American Empire is not a recent invention!

Without doubt, according to de Tocquevillle's observation, America WAS once a great nation! However, as the name 'America' is no longer synonymous with 'good' ( especially if you ask most Middle Easterners ), can America any longer be termed 'great', except in the sense of prowess, or physical strength. America has shown it's true colors all over the world, bullying lesser nations into accepting it's terms of 'democracy'! In some sense, one could be lead to wonder if what we now bear witness to in America & around the world is actually all that much departed from her founding 'principles'!

Is it merely nationalistic fervor that prompted 'the Donald' to utter those now famous words, or were they based upon a genuine wish to return to the 'Christian' principles this nation was founded upon? My readers must judge for themselves which is more likely, but I believe it's pretty clear where his allegiance lies! As you may have noticed, I have not even mentioned the other party's candidate ( she's really not even worth mentioning ) because, of the two choices, he IS the better; but again, my readers must decide for themselves if they can conscientiously vote for either one!

By focusing on just one candidate, I am by no means showing allegiance to either party, the donkeys OR the elephants! Salvation for this country, this 'One Nation Under God', will come in no form other than a complete turn-around of the practices of those in power, as well as those who follow them. Donald Trump wants to 'make America great again'; whatever he means by that rather ambiguous statement, we can be pretty certain that he did not refer to de Tocqueville's comment. I believe that it is possible that he could be startled by the Holy Spirit & set on the 'right' path, but that's just a little more likely than winning the lottery without buying a ticket!

Maybe I'm just losing my faith, though................

Charles Haddon Shank


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