A culture is much broader than politics. It is a national identity encompassing education, economics, ethics, art, science, health, leisure, relationships, religions . . . everything that constitutes the basic shared core values of any country. In our case, the value of individualism has been the common denominator linking all other aspects of our cultural distinctiveness; it is what makes The United States “America.” Viable only where liberty reigns, valuing the sovereignty of individuals is precisely what made America exceptional. Until now.
When DeTocqueville visited America in the 19th century, he wrote: “America is great because she is good, and if America will cease to be good, America will cease to be great.”
Today, from Washington, D.C., to local school boards to mainstream media, it is clear that by catering to artificially created groups — race, gender, gender preference, age, ethnicity — rather than protecting the rights of every individual regardless of circumstance, America has lost its moral compass and is drowning in the high tides of corruption and collectivism. Power lust has replaced justice. Academics and politicians utilize group demands as excuses for sweeping individual rights from our shores to gain control over an increasingly foundering populace. The greatest victim of this culture crisis is truth.
Definitions — Random House American Dictionary: "Morality: conformity to the rules of right conduct; moral or virtuous conduct. Also: the doctrine or system of morals; ethics; duties. Immorality: immoral quality, character, or conduct; wickedness; vice. Amorality: neither moral nor immoral. (Oxford English Dictionary is more specific. Amoral: not within the sphere of moral sense; not to be characterized as either good or bad; non moral.)
The first two concepts are well understood in America; codes and boundaries of behavior are set by principles, doctrines, or convention. It’s the third one — amorality — that is largely misunderstood but crucial to identify and comprehend.
Amorality is a state of affairs with no moral principles or rules to follow or betray. None.
Even though a culture may have rules regarding physical behavior, if there are no moral standards, then one cannot be right or wrong in such a societal vacuum because there is nothing to be right or wrong about. Although lip service to the virtue of truth telling may exists on some level, lying and deceit are historically accepted in countless foreign countries as an amoral (rather than an immoral) practice, and this habit of guiltless deception is now establishing itself in America. Individuals and groups lie whenever and however it suits their purpose: to cover up transgressions, to obscure evil intentions, to attain power, to obtain something they want, to get past a thorny communication or negotiation issue. A million motivations can prompt lying, but it doesn’t matter what the motives are, there is always some gain on the part of the liar that fabrication paves the way to achieving. Amorals lie to others and they lie to themselves without even the concept of lying arising in their minds because this concept doesn’t exist for them. There is no judgment, remorse, worry, or condemnation because amoral lying is not a right or wrong thing. It just is. An axiomatic “Given.”
Amoral individuals are pragmatic to the nth degree of that anti-philosophy; what they say or do works to achieve their purpose or it doesn’t work. Period. Morality has nothing whatsoever to do with principles, values, or any word or action. The end game is all. The means to the end? Meaningless. This is hard for upstanding people to grasp let alone make real, so moral Americans are at a great disadvantage when dealing with amoral people because it is extremely difficult to integrate the fact that anything goes and all means justify all ends. The disadvantage is operative when dealing with any amoral person, but because most Americans naively believe what they hear, it is especially dangerous when dealing with amoral political-societal “leaders” who desire to crush our culture from within to secure power positions for themselves. To escalate the danger, an ever-growing, non-judgmental mindset on the part of the general populace to accept lying from any “authority” is a precondition to complying with tyranny if and when it finally arrives.
Political correctness has paralyzed most Americans, but throwing off that muzzle is crucial if we are to avoid being chained both body and mind by elected government officials and regulatory agencies in cohorts with educational institutions and a media intent on using the American people as fodder to feed their insatiable appetites for power to mold and control. It has happened before in developed countries, e.g., Hitler’s quick rise to dictatorship in the Weimar Republic.
Now, especially during this volatile election process, we citizens, as individuals, must face facts honestly, repair to our constitutional rights, think independently, and open our mouths to decry the lies and speak the truth.
For an extensive examination of this subject see my Kindle monograph "Lying as a Way of Life: Corruption and Collectivism Come of Age in America."
Alexandra York is an author and founding president of the American Renaissance for the Twenty-first Century (ART) a New-York-City-based nonprofit educational arts and culture foundation. She has written for many publications, including "Reader’s Digest" and The New York Times. Her latest book is "The Innocent." For more on Alexandra York, Go Here Now.
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