“There is nothing wrong with America that cannot be cured by what is right with America.” First Inauguration speech by Bill Clinton
Protests are rolling across our country, roiling the American spirit. It is appropriate to promote justice where injustice has pervaded the lives of African Americans. It is appropriate to protest for a cause but not appropriate to destroy.
“Mass protest works…. Random lawbreaking — like vandalism and theft on city streets — does not.” Vox, June 4. “Nobody is speaking in favor of vandalism or theft, but there’s unquestionably a sense in the air on the left that it’s inappropriate to condemn these actions. The sentiment is pervasive on social media, where many on the left make the point that human life matters more than property as if there’s a hard trade-off between the destruction of property and saving the lives of African Americans.”
We must stand up for justice—justice for African Americans—justice for all citizens who have been wronged. Equally, we must stand up for law and order for our society to function. Where are our politicians, our religious leaders, our corporate leaders? They are cowering, giving in one issue at a time, allowing the chaos to continue, succumbing to vandals’ threats, destruction, demands.
Abraham Lincoln argued that the Declaration of Independence represented an aspiration, not a social reality. Lincoln said that the men who drafted the Declaration “meant to set up a standard maxim for free society, which should be familiar to all, and revered by all; constantly looked to, constantly labored for, and even though never perfectly attained, constantly approximated, and thereby constantly spreading and deepening its influence and augmenting the happiness and value of life to all people of all colors everywhere.”
Our nation’s evolution has incorporated a continuous strengthening of mores and legislation to improve the lives of its citizens, particularly in the last 60 years.
Conversation must begin in collaborating and listening and ascribing to the common goal. The question: who will take a stand?