Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Columns

September 6, 2013

STEPHEN M. KING: Strengthening our national character

America has left her roots of religious faith and moral foundation.

(Continued)

Sunstein does not discredit the original Bill of Rights, but he does claim these “original” rights were not based solely on “laissez-faire individualism,” rather they were designed to protect citizenship claims of civic responsibility.

Now, obviously, Levin, Sabato and Sunstein are far apart on their ideological views of government. Yet, all three claim that substantive changes to the Constitution are needed.

So, what is the point, you may ask? The point is simply this: whether orchestrating largely untouched constitutional methods to change our Constitution, or supporting various governance, structural or substantive amendments to the Constitution itself, although they may be necessary and may even restore “founding ideals,” will not correct the underlying problem in America: a lack of national character or soul.

America is not the victim of a hapless electorate, or of elitist statists, who desire nothing more than to collude with each other to make the common man’s life miserable, or of a governing body, whether legislative, executive or judicial, that do not engage political tools to promote greater fairness and equality.

No, the problem with America is that she has forgotten her soul; she sold it to the highest bidder in the Post Modern society.

She has left her roots of religious devotion and ethical and moral foundation; instead, she religiously pursues technical and technological means of changing and preparing for the future.

She has discredited her faith in the lower levels of governance, from the traditional family to the community, to non-profit and faith-based organizations, and instead she has embraced the secular brand of governing that only the civil state can afford, ranging from the local to state to national levels.

No, the problem of a forgotten soul will not be solved by simply arguing for structural and substantive changes to the way we govern ourselves nationally, whether from libertarian to collectivist positions. It can only be truly addressed with a hardline position to self-examination.

Stephen M. King, Ph.D., teaches political science at Taylor University, Upland. Contact him at stking@taylor.edu.

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