Is it every man for themselves…as some might have you believe?
No, but neither is it that anybody should get something for nothing.
In America, we take care of those who pay their dues and put in the work, and we don’t like freeloaders. This is true regardless of individual political party or beliefs.
What most Americans do like, what most of us do believe in, is that anyone should have the opportunity to achieve success no matter their station at birth. We believe people should succeed by virtue of their intelligence, their ingenuity and the sweat of their brow…not their family name or inherited wealth.
That is Equality of Opportunity.
And it is the American Dream.
What these people don’t tell their audience is that government already picks winners and losers…it’s just mostly based on campaign contributions and lobbying. Anyone who might actually need or deserve help always take a back seat to the political donor class.
This system is in no way based on America’s long-term interests or maximizing our potential, either individually or collectively, and our prospects have suffered as a result.
Americans are no longer guaranteed the unlimited opportunity that the American Dream once promised. For every anecdotal success story of a person rising up from humble beginnings, there are countless others unable to overcome the challenges of their circumstances and fall through the cracks, their potential wasted.
For most, chasing success these days feels like being a hamster on a wheel, watching as the rats hoard all the cheese.
People are desperate for a new paradigm; one which offers a way for shared prosperity without the unfair costs of the current system or which simply takes resources from one group just to give them to another.
The first step must be to challenge the notion that no better system than our current predatory one is even possible.
In cities and towns across the country, opportunity-enhancing programs to serve and benefit those communities are already being successfully implemented. Unfortunately, we never hear enough about these successes, because the complicit media cannot pull its attention away from the latest spectacle or tragedy long enough to bother.
Perhaps they don’t want to demonstrate there is a new, different way forward because they are too married to the narrow left-right paradigm they have spent so much time & energy cultivating? Regardless…
Innovative local programs & initiatives are the laboratories of American democracy. It is high time we started paying attention to them.
Every success story offers a template for other communities to use. Failures, while unfortunate, are still instructive. Getting democracy right is always a moving target, and our federal government is too calcified and entrenched in failed systems to adapt to a rapidly changing world.
That certainly needs to be addressed, but we must first lay the foundation before attempting to install the roof.
The first step to remaking our federal government is to empower local communities to do the dirty work of figuring out what works and what doesn’t. What we discover could provide a strong foundation for a new system prioritizing the collective good over the good of a privileged few.
In other words…
Doing that would make America great for all, rather than just a select few.