America's restoration has begun
We the people believe in America today and we will believe in American tomorrow. Yet it would be an understatement to say our confidence has been shaken over the past five years. Our optimistic spirits have been dampened by a weak economy and political gridlock coming from Washington, D.C. We the people are tired and frustrated. We yearn for leadership, we yearn for vision and we yearn for hope. We were promised it in 2008, and it never came. In 2014, we find ourselves cynical and jaded about our country, our politics and our future. And in America - that should never be the case.
What we require is a reawakening. A revival. An American restoration. Some say we need it fast, but I think it's already begun.
America waits. America waits, not necessarily for a knight in shining armor, or a rallying squad, but instead to live in a country, where they are free to go about their business, knowing that their livelihoods will not be depleted; that America is strong and that their children will still live in a country so eloquently described as a shining city upon a hill.
A land of innovation. A nation of hard work. A land where the impossible was possible. John F. Kennedy so famously told Americans in 1961 to ask not what your country can do for you, but to ask what we can do for our country. America wasn't always in the condition it is today. "Yes, we can" was not a political slogan, but a motto that described at one point in time what America could do, and the limits were boundless.
We were once strong and we can be again. We merely have to push past the partisan bickering. Ignore the naysayers and actually start believing not only in America again, but in ourselves as a people. For once we accomplish that task, there'll be nothing we can't accomplish.
Now, many of you are probably asking how. How does America believe in itself again? What is the remedy? People often talk about America as a nation in decline, that like Rome and other great powers throughout history, we will, eventually do as the Romans did and fall, only to be looked at in the history books as a once great nation - not one that still is.
I reject the view of decline. We're in a slump. We've been given a raw deal, but we're not finished. We've not passed the pinnacle of our greatness. I believe decline is a choice, not a fate. Nations choose to fall because they've lost their way. We've veered off course, but we're not at the edge of the cliff. Other great nations and empires of the past undoubtedly did themselves in by forsaking their principles and national identity.
We are Americans, and while our principles have been tested, they endure. So long as we do not sell ourselves short there is no reason for this country to decline. It will not be fate that does America in. We can reverse the course we find ourselves on by entirely rebuking the kind of leadership and policies we've seen over the past five years.
A great deal of the blame falls on the Democrats, but those in my party are not blameless. Both parties have contributed to the dysfunctions, to the paralysis and mere systematic breakdown of this country. And all politicians entrenched in the muddy waters of Washington, D.C. should be sent home.
A grand cleaning is in order, from the House to the Senate and in 2016, the White House.
It's time to get America going again. It's time to believe in America once again, and it's already begun. We the people of the United States are fed up. We're tired, we're angry and we merely want America to start working right again. We want to end the mentality of let's-just-get-by, instead embrace the mentality of let's-get-it-done.
This November will be our first step, and I hope all Americans will take part in this effort to right what has been wrong for so very long, but even when the polls have closed and the votes counted, the work continues. We must renew a sense of civic patriotism and be active citizens in our political system. We must hold politicians' feet to the roaring fire and ensure they keep their word, and if they verge off course, send them packing.
In talking to people everywhere I go, I find a growing sense that people are to borrow an old movie quote, "I'm mad as hell and not going to take it anymore!" I concur. We the people are awakening or reawakening and realizing America's greatness is passing us by if we don't do something.
As always, the solutions will not come from Washington or our elected officials, but from us - the people.
Phil Boynton is a senior political science major and president of the UNH College Republicans.
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