As most of you know (because you follow my wifes blog at momzoo), we are home schooling our oldest daughter (Punk #1). In doing so momzoo has been reading A Thomas Jefferson Education: Teaching a Generation of Leaders for the Twenty-first Century. It has given her a lot of insight. There is a home companion to it as well, called A Thomas Jefferson Education Home Companion. This book has given us additional insight.
Not only has it helped us with home schooling, but it also makes a case for what has happened and why the United States has moved from the founding fathers ideals. The book discusses how we have changed from the “inner-directed” American to the “Teenager Society” American.
“Meet the new type of American. The organization-pleasing employee, the outer-directed father, the peer-responsive mother, the “be-in-the-popular-crowd” teenager, the impress-the-Jonese neighbor, the keep-up-appearances church member, the check-the-polls politician, the increase-our-ratings reporter, the bottom-line-businessman preacher, the for-profit teacher, the gone-to-Florida grandparent, the sex-partner intern, the anti-morality revolutionary professor, the multi-cultural college student, the sensitive no-chest modern mane, the fully-fulfilled-by-my-career-dont-need-men woman, the wealth-is-success young single “Friends”. The frontiersman has been displaced by “patio man,” as David Brooks put it, and the pioneer mother by “Ellen” and “desperate housewives”. [pg 4, AEducation Home Companion]
Society has moved to where “one’s beliefs are the result of one’s peers rather than one’s parents, grandparents, church traditions or national patriotism.” America is moving away from being proud of our ancestors to trying to separate ourselves from our ancestors. From standing up for your Church beliefs to trying to change the Church to fit peer beliefs. We have stopped em brassing American and patriotism to trying to improve or change it.
I hope we have not gone to far into the “Teenager Society”, but can still pull our moral compass not from what is popular (peer pressure), but from traditions of Church, Family, and Nation.
We were driving to a family function yesterday and a song came on the radio. The song was written by Toby Keith, called “Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue”. And while I was listening to that song, I remembered how it was a herald of freedom after the attacks on 9/11. But now it is unpopular to think that way. It is really sad to me that the trend in the US is moving away from being “Proud to be an American”. We have lost our fight. Society no longer believes in an America that makes the World a better, safer, freer place. Everyone has shifted from what can American do to help the World to what can American do to help ME. Instead of us trying to be strong as a Society and Nation, we are trying to be strong and Individuals. We need to remember, that it was not an individual that won the revolutionary war, and individual that abolished slavery in the US, or an individual that made this great country. It was the nation as a whole, and until we can move back to the traditions of Family, Church, and the Founding Fathers, we will not be able to get ourselves out of this mess.
We need to join together and do what we can do to BUILD AMERICA, instead of individualizing our selfs and seeing what America can do for us.