Conditions must sometimes get very bad before we wake up to the causes and make big corrections while there is still time. I expect the 2022 congressional midterm elections to clearly demonstrate that our country has reached that point.
I’m referring to a lot more than just the U.S. economy.
Sure, skyrocketing inflation associated with extravagant government spending and misguided energy policies that have driven up food and commodity prices hurt everyone … particularly those in lower- and middle-income brackets. Money devaluation and financial market instability also put lifetime retirement investments, including homes and 401(k) accounts, at worrisome risk.
But America’s current malaise runs even far broader and deeper.
It’s a pervasive feeling that many of our top government representatives, national, state, and local, don’t recognize and respect our country’s great historical struggles, achievements and foundational institutions that warrant pride and patriotism.
It’s a general sense that cultural and individual diversity that has made us strong is being exploited by divide-and-conquer opportunists driven by self-serving unsavory agendas.
It’s alarm that our parental responsibilities are being forfeited to bureaucratic government and union entities that regard children as wards of the state.
It’s growing doubt that our God-given human rights to equal justice and fairness guaranteed under law by our foundational Constitution are being ignored and abused by institutions we have trusted.
It’s a fear that revolutionary information technologies for good are being weaponized for propaganda and censorship.
It’s warranted concern regarding tolerance for rampant lawlessness and disregard for protection of national border sovereignty essential to any great civil society.
It’s growing evidence that our country is rapidly — willingly — losing its capacity to compete with foreign markets and malign military adversaries.
And all of this has mistakenly seemed to be occurring very suddenly, though the damage to critical supporting timbers of our society has already occurred long before it was discovered.
Let’s consider some recently unimaginable examples.
In less than two years, America has gone from being energy independent and globally dominant to an energy pauper where our president pleads with Saudi Arabia, OPEC, Venezuela and Iran to produce more oil that will replace our own in order — somehow inexplicably — to benefit the world’s climate.
The leader of our country and the free world has disparagingly and demoralizingly declared that systemic racism is “the greatest crisis of our time,” a “stain on our nation’s soul,” and that “racism and white supremacy are ugly poisons that have long plagued the United States.”
We are witnessing our nation’s top elected leaders, in concert with teachers’ unions, support indoctrination of K-12 students with divisive critical race theory (CRT) that has them self-identify as “oppressed” and “oppressors,” along with anti-patriotic 1619 Project revisionist history that falsely claims our great nation was primarily founded on a slavery agenda.
Attorney General Merrick Garland, our nation’s lead Department of Justice official, authorized the FBI to investigate parents who protest school boards that allow CRT, 1619 Project and age-inappropriate materials to be taught in their classrooms as potential “domestic terrorists.”
Cancel culture assaults on First Amendment free speech rights have become so flagrant that social media tech czars have succeeded in banning a popularly elected sitting president from the public square along with blocking exchanges of politically unfavored information which would have exposed deep scandals of his challenging opponent during the 2020 election.
Sham Democrat-led Jan. 6 House Select Committee show trials with an unambiguous foregone intent to convict a previous president of crimes to make him ineligible to seek another term violates every norm of equal justice with a rigged jury and no opportunity for testimonial rebuttal or presentation of exculpatory evidence.
Escalating homicides, gang violence, personal assaults, and property crimes in predominantly Democrat-controlled cities are occurring in tandem with tacit White House approval of police-defund movements along with failures of local jurisdictions to prosecute perpetrators and hold them accountable.
Millions of unvetted illegal immigrants from at least 160 countries have been virtually invited to pass through our nation’s open southern border and become transported — often at taxpayer expense — to de facto “sanctuary cities” throughout the country as overwhelmed border patrols are unable to staunch massive consequential increases in Mexican cartel narcotics and human sex trafficking.
America’s helter-skelter withdrawal from Afghanistan which left 13 service members dead and abandoned more than $80 billion in advanced weaponry, along with the strategically important Bagram Air Force Base to the Taliban, has sent a resounding message of incompetence that signals weakness and opportunities to China, Russia, Iran and other military adversaries.
Yes, America will survive, correct course, and perhaps in some ways emerge even stronger and wiser.
Larger questions concern: What will have learned? How long will we remember? Where will all of this leave us? How far back from neo-Marxist extremism will the pendulum arc swing?
On balance, will these experiences serve as beneficial lessons … vital reminders regarding so very much about America that is worth cherishing and protecting?
And those weakening our societal timbers, if you will, what about them?
Will the 2022 midterm elections halt, or at least limit, permanent structural damage, that is until a sweeping 2024 restoration wholly occurs?
Larry Bell is an endowed professor of space architecture at the University of Houston where he founded Sasakawa International Center for Space Architecture and the graduate space architecture program. His latest of 11 books, "Beyond Flagpoles and Footprints: Pioneering the Space Frontier" co-authored with Buzz Aldrin (2021), is available on Amazon along with all others. Read Larry Bell's Reports — More Here.
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