It is nearly 15 months since the present administration took office and if America cannot see the direction this administration is headed then it doesn't want to see it. President Obama is now taking the final step in "transforming America" into a full fledged socialistic state. Please note that "final step" preceded "transforming America." That is because, according to many historians, America has been on the road to socialism for years without knowing it. This move to socialism began when the progressive movement came out of the closet in the early 1900s. It has been a slow "progressive" march ever since and was sold to America under the cloak of love, compassion, humanitarianism and even religious mores. America has sold its God-inspired freedoms and liberty for a mess of pottage. Socialism is a counterfeit form of government that leads its citizens into bondage as surely as Stalin enslaved the Russians beginning in 1917.
Recently, while during research for my book, "God's Influence in the Making of America," I came across two talks given to college students in 1966. One of them compared socialism to America's Constitutional form of government, which has guaranteed freedom of conscience and the right to own property to its citizens. The speaker provided a definition of socialism that George Bernard Shaw, an avowed socialist, provided Encyclopedia Britannica in 1943: "Socialism, reduced to its simplest and legal practical expression, means the complete discarding (destruction) of the institution of private property and the division of the resultant income equally and indiscriminately among the entire population." Very revealing!
That is human bondage. Do Americans want to give up their liberty for this? It happened because America fell asleep while the progressive movement was moving silently forward - infiltrating like termites - the courts and higher education systems. The Progressives had two major victories in "transforming America" in 1913. Teddy Roosevelt succeeded in changing two foundational principles with the passage of the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Amendments. The first, the income tax, opened the door to today's spending spree and it was passed using the slogan, "Soak the Rich," the same slogan progressives use today. The second, changed the way U.S. Senators were elected. Prior to 1913 senators were elected by their state legislature, afterward they were elected by "the people." Sounds good! It was not good! It destroyed the check the states had on the federal government. Now America is beginning to see how it has been led astray by the Progressive Pied Pipers with a counterfeit system of socialistic values.
Before the progressives "cleansed" America's text books, America's children were basically taught from the McGuffey Reader and Webster's Speller. Both McGuffey and Webster, while writing their books, took literally the admonition of the 1789 Congress to teach the students "religion, morals, and knowledge," in that order. Both used the Bible for a reference in all their lessons. They understood that when Jefferson wrote into the Declaration of Independence words that read "the Laws of Nature and Nature's God," "Creator," and "Supreme Judge of the world" Jefferson was referring to the living God who inspired the creation of America and the winning of an unwinnable war for freedom.
It was these early generations of Americans that built the America most American's still cherish. Today, thanks to "unfulfillable" progressive promises of "something for nothing," America could well become a second-rate nation like Cuba. Their future success depends on it. All Americans need to know America's roots and how God influenced the making of America. But please, no more headlines that read: "Obama: Time to take action on education." It scares me! And it should scare you!
Donald Conkey, a retired agricultural economist, lives in Woodstock.