My lifetime has spanned the administrations of 14 U.S. presidents. I have seen the assassination of an American president, the rise of communist China, the fall of the Soviet Union, and the rise to prominence of the MyPillow guy, Mike Lindell. So much to digest.
Before my lifetime, America was a great nation. It met the threats of the fascist Axis powers of the 1940s head-on and defeated them through sheer collective fortitude and an unwavering resolve to provide a better world to subsequent generations. The United States basked in the sunshine of democracy and opportunity. Little did its citizens suspect then that their great nation would not survive two decades into the next century without falling prey to civil strife, political chaos and malignant creeds. The killings of unarmed citizens by police would become almost commonplace, and a massive domestic attack on the core of our democracy, the U.S. Capitol, would forever stain our heritage.
Plainly speaking, Americans’ memories and collective sense of decency were decidedly compromised. We forgot our heritage, our Constitution, our civil responsibilities and our manners. The concept of e pluribus unum flew out the window like a rogue parakeet. The question now is how to return America to its former greatness and coherence, post-World War II.
Richard Yesley • New Athens