A Union Reclaimed
Are we not still brothers and sisters of an American nation? Have our wounds with one another become so grievous that they are beyond mending? Can it be said that the American experiment is over because the people of this nation have forgotten our defining attribute of cohesion; the backbone to which all this republic has been hoisted upon- compromise? Compromise that fettered together thirteen colonies, by which all the amendments to the Constitution have been passed, and for which we are, all of us, indebted to the mothers and fathers of this nation to which has shown that a model of liberty can stand.
It is our fate now, to shoulder the financial burden for those who are unable to shoulder it for themselves. To care for the laborer who hath borne the toil and for her children, and her spouse, to do all which may attain and cherish a lasting reaffirmation of a nation built upon the people, among ourselves and our elected governors. With Malice toward none, and Charity for all; with a firmness in Justice, as we are able to be Just.
Is it not true that labor is higher than capital? It must be so. Yet for so long, the American public has become enamored with the profit, rather than the toil which permits it. We inscribe a notion of trust in the divine nature of things on our currency, and yet we refuse to affirm the divine in the labor, toil, and effort that have built up a national wealth dwarfing the sums of all previous empires stacked high upon one another. We have become so enthralled with the notion of becoming wealthy that we have become poor in spirit. And because we enjoy vastly more than any who have come before, we are unwilling to bend to our own discomfort for the sake those who have less than we. And because we have lost the grit for sacrifice, we find ourselves pitted against one another, saying, “I will not be moved.”
We are a nation built upon the promise of a maintained compromise. For as those thirteen colonies, all with their own sacrifices, became one independent nation, so should we, three-hundred million Americans, put aside ancient or fresh monikers and nomenclatures, so that we as a people, and not as parties, shall survive as a united house. Rather than battle one another, we should make peace by uniting again in the acceptance of our past inclemency. For the brother to say to his sister, “I was wrong. Forgive me,” and for the father to say to his son, “I have lead you astray from the road of justice; this tolerant way is the path we shall go.” Then, and only then, in submission to one another, bound up as a singular hope, can the Republic be made whole.
In a nation comprised of multiple faiths, creeds, and philosophies, will it be said that all of their American practitioners could scarcely find the shining hope in these trying times? Will it be written that the depth of our resolve proved shallow when our duty of informed and involved self-governance came to bear upon us? We are a nation divided and suffering, weary from war-making, and laboring under distrust almost incalculable. We have been wronged by one another, by our governing officials both past and present, and if guilt is true north, thenthe compass points to us, the People.
We the people.
For it is not enough for the People to declare power. They must, if they so wish to be free, wield it unflinchingly. Rather than be overwhelmed by the machinery of the Democratic process, let us return to it as engineers, laborers, machinists, and custodians, replacing the corroded wheels, cleaning the rusted cogs, and repairing that which makes capable our own self-governing. If we refuse our duty now, there will one day come an accounting where we will be asked by our children and their children, ‘Why did you do nothing when things began to loll and pitch in the storm?’ Will we answer the bondsman’s call with the impudence of spoiled and entitled children? Or will we bind ourselves together in the singular hope that this enterprise, rooted in liberty, shall forever manifest itself as a place where there are no masters or slaves and that it shall remain as such for all who call it home.