Even with a global pandemic and economic recession, I still believe that America remains the leading country for anyone looking for real opportunity. But I also worry that our young people aren’t learning the true lessons of history, and that without those lessons in mind they will drift toward chaos.
Over the last decade the public dialogue in this country has become more about what’s wrong with it than what’s right about it. Clearly America has had a complicated and violent history, but equally clearly no country has a history free of bloody hands. The history of human beings is heavy on conquest, slavery, and war, yet it’s as if we’ve lost historical perspective on the hatred and the violence that have dominated so much of human history.
But American history is equally marked by widespread innovation, science, and progress along with love, caring and enlightenment. For the teaching in our schools to focus only, or disproportionately on the mistakes and brutality, and to ignore the successes and opportunities of America is to foster a mindset that breeds unenlightened young people who can only yell “Tear It All Down!” to give voice to their confused frustration with their own ignorance and helplessness.
America’s young people are rarely taught practical economics, but they’re rather endlessly taught to hate those who have more wealth than they do, or who are apparently happier or who lead more comfortable lives than they do, and they are urged to desperately want more for themselves. They become consumers, not citizens. They aren’t taught how to raise themselves and others up; they’re taught how to attack those who some of the most vocal and vicious haters in society want them to hate.
We should be celebrating those who rise up in life whatever their starting point while holding educational institutions accountable for the lack of education they provide in spite of massive consumption of tax dollars. We ought also to take greater note as a society of the many among us who are quietly, on their own initiative, reaching our and touching the lives of all those they can reach with positive, empowering and uplifting messages and actions.
Kevin Hart has a program where he travels to urban school districts and teaches teenagers about the importance of saving & investing money. He teaches them something that he sees these young kids aren’t being taught. Kevin Hart is a self-made millionaire who came right from where the kids are that he speaks to. He’s an American success story. He’s teaching individuals how to make something out of themselves while he’s giving them self-motivating messages that their schools can’t seem to deliver. He’s providing young people with the tools they need to be able to create their own success in America.
Among the greatest of the freedoms that make up our American heritage:
We have the freedom to express ourselves and our beliefs in public and in private; to present our ideas, our evidence, and our proposals in any public forum; to have a voice that cannot be silenced by any authority; and to build a career and make a good living with our free voice, our talents, our mind and our spirit.
We have the freedom to compete & innovate with products, services and concepts that create something new or better and that are able to compete in free and fair markets for the approval of free and informed buyers.
We have the freedom to live without suffering from hatred and violence of any kind from any source in our lives and in our communities.
And we have the freedom to try, to lose, to fail, to make mistakes and to then make the most out of whatever resources we have. We’re a nation of people who understand that everyone learns from mistakes and that everyone should be allowed to fail and succeed according to their own abilities, and if they ask for help it should be freely given. We’re all in this together – we have to be if we want to live up to the promise of America.