America is the world’s leading nation in many ways. When you spend more than 70 years at the top, with the last 25 years being unchallenged for leadership, a nation can become soft.
My millennium generation friends and family are often maligned. Having served with some of the finest in Afghanistan, I am not wringing my hands. They are reasonable, competent, strong, compassionate, bright people. I hate them being derided as snowflakes or whatever else. Serve with them, know them. Many are searching for knowledge.
This is where we have failed them. We didn’t teach them how to distinguish between the flood of the information age. We have a Google search society not a Google Scholar research and know society. It is YouTube video, not nonfiction books. We judge the credibility of information by how popular it is not by how rigorous the scholarship is. The real answer is not always in the first 2 pages of a Bing or Google search. Our education system is a disgrace when it comes to teaching research and critical thinking. It won’t even teach the story of America. If we didn’t have great patriots who supplement the curriculum with vital information, we would be in deep trouble. Teachers and parents who enlighten the next generation of leaders need our support. Too often, they receive hindrances.
It is the superficiality of knowledge that endangers us. We don’t have a strong foundation of theology, spiritual growth, and heritage. It is by understanding the foundational truths of our society that we can build higher and stronger. It keeps us focused on our purpose.
Life is not about escapism. It is not merely about pleasure and getting along. It is not about getting stoned or waiting for next weekend’s drinking binge. It is not about hooking up. There’s more to life. Faith, industrious pursuits, art, literature, enterprise, community engagement, family, friendship, and patriotism are a web not boxes. They are bound together with a purpose rooted in our heritage. Americans have a heritage of deep thought. Go back 100 years read letters from war or go to the Civil War read the letters in the Common Man. Look those letters, you will see a depth that we need to recover. American is great but it’s not a given.