The Problem Isn’t the People

The Problem Isn’t the People

There is a fair amount of concern these days that Americans have lost faith in their institutions. Usually, the discussion misses the point (an all too common occurrence these days). The problem isn’t that the American people no longer trust their institutions, it’s that American institutions no longer deserve trust.

The list of undeserving institutions is quite long.

Too many schools and universities no longer see education as their mission; it is no longer secret that they focus on indoctrination. Why would any responsible parent who is aware of this voluntarily hand their children over to such an institution?

Whose fault is it that home and private schooling are surging and university enrollment is dropping? Are public schools, colleges and universities still deserving of public support if they no longer serve the public good?

During the COVID debacle, corporate employers and government agencies conspired to crush dissent and even healthy debate among those sincere individuals, both inside and out of the health care industry, who recognized the obvious folly and danger of mandates imposed on the American population.

Much of the press failed to report anything but the government line (more on this phenomenon below).

Now, none of these policy makers and their enforcers recognize their culpability for the ensuing upswing in mental depression, immunity problems, falling school test scores and attendance, inflation, decreases in production and increases in unemployment.

Yes, it was a real virus leaving death and illness as it worked its way through the population, as viruses have always done, but who with any association in the disastrous COVID response that will be felt for generations is deserving of trust today when they won’t admit even a shred of responsibility?

Then there are the churches.

It seems in a quest to fill seats, too many have sought to court popular opinion. If righteousness were inherently popular, popular opinion would be inherently righteous. It doesn’t seem to be so, and presenting amoral popular trends as virtuous only serves to drive away those serious in their faith.

Other church leaders cower in fear of the so-called Johnson Amendment of the US tax code that prohibits their engaging in political activity, so they shy from any social commentary that could be interpreted as such.

Many churches, mostly with liberal biases, flagrantly ignore this prohibition without penalty, while others cower.

Obvious displays of fear hardly inspire churchgoers to be soldiers of their faith.

Of course, we cannot forget—or forgive—elected and appointed officials who swear an Oath to serve and protect the Constitution of the United States and the citizens they represent, but instead only serve their campaign donors and corrupt partisans in a short-sighted frenzy for power at any cost.

Do our government institutions currently deserve trust?

Here in Michigan, no thinking person can possibly consider our electoral system secure with its laughably named Qualified Voter Files (QVF) and unmonitored drop boxes for unverifiable ballots. It has become a mockery at the hands of Secretary of State Joselyn Benson, but legislators in both parties failed to defend this long-cherished institution and stop her. They share in the blame for the governmental aberrations that follow.

Once, the concept of equal protection under the rule of law was the keystone of American culture and prosperity. Where it was respected, communities flourished. No better illustration of the reverse of this was the Jim Crow scourge over some states for generations. Only a few were allowed to flourish and they held tight reigns over their law and judicial systems to maintain their power. Everyone else struggled, suffered and too many died. We are currently witnessing Jim Crow imposed over much of the country with a two-tiered justice system which results in no justice at all—only politically selected winners and losers.

Justice is a universal concept with defined meaning. It needs no modifier. Any time you see one, be it “social justice,” “racial justice,” “economic justice,” “environmental justice,” or anything of the ilk, you are no longer talking about justice. You are talking about something else.

Justice is justice, applied equally to all or it is by definition injustice. It could not be any simpler than that.

A cornerstone of the nation was it’s free press, which at one time served as a check against public corruption. With few exceptions, those days are long gone.

Some might remember international gatherings of journalists where the Soviet Union’s Pravda was the laughingstock because it consistently towed the Communist Party line through government-induced famine, kangaroo court show trials and rampant politically motivated arrests. (Is any of this sounding familiar?) The editors and writers of Pravda might have been forgiven back then, for it was well known they risked imprisonment or death if they stepped out of line and reported the truth.

One wonders how so much of the American journalism industry justifies their clear denial of the obvious truth in so many cases. Such abuse of a Constitutional Freedom can only result in the erosion of that freedom—will that be the people’s fault?

No, the problem is not with the people. The problem is with those in real or assumed authority in the areas above, and others too numerous to list here, who use their positions to undermine this country that for so long served as the beacon for the rest of the world.

Directly or indirectly they conspire, thinking the people are too stupid to notice.

Whether they take action or not, the people do notice. Just like the people of the Soviet Union noticed despite generations of state-imposed oppression, isolation and indoctrination.

Trust does not come automatically. It is earned and must be maintained. Blame for whatever comes in correcting the path of the United States will not rightly fall on the people, even though some may conveniently claim such to be the case.

Blame should rightly fall on those who took an active roll in undermining the country and causing the people to rise up—however that manifests itself.

Chris Meister, MCU Chair
March 17, 2024
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