The open question is: 'What makes the United States the best country in the world?'.
The French Revolution [1789-1799] took on the slogan "Liberté, égalité, fraternité (liberty, equality, brotherhood)" but that does not satisfy the open question. Americans generally agree with the French motto, but this was not what drove the signers of the Declaration of Independence to "mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor".
I say that what the America's Founding Fathers were about was the achievement of Justice for the residents of the American Colonies.
'No taxation without representation' was at the forefront. And there was no way to attain representation under the authoritarian King George III. (Such was impossible in the practical sense as well: imagine trying to deal with votes in Britain's Parliament from across the Atlantic Ocean, a voyage that then took more than a month each way.)
The United States was built on the notion of the existence of the Individual, for whom the local and national governing bodies should provide a just environment. And that also meant justice for all, although it took a long while for such benefits to include slaves, females, and minorities – even in theory. A large part of the tension and acrimony and violence today is because theoretical justice for black and brown and red and yellow people, women, LGBT people, non-Christians, the elderly, the young, and the poor are being rolled back. The fascist Koch Brothers, their A.L.E.C. program, their Koch-funded T.E.A. Party radicals, white supremacists, and other anti-justice folk really intend to cancel the rights gained by the oppressed in hard-fought battles over the last 200 years.
The ideal of Justice is why many of our ancestors came to America and why many in other lands are still hoping to get here somehow.
But the reality is that Justice is being taken away while the ignorant watch dance shows and soap operas, the violent wear hoods in the night, the mis-informed suck up more propaganda from right-wing Faux News pundits, and the weak give up and stay home.
The Oligarchs want no taxation, period – at least not for them. The citizens of America, however, want to fix our broken infrastructure, to clean up the polluted environments that we live in, to educate our children, to restore justice to the criminal justice system, to boost the economy by creating jobs, to enable health and well-being for all, and to bring back the once-thriving Middle Class.
The extant Civil War in America is being fought over the issue of Justice. Which side are you on?
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