Many concerns occupy the minds of those who are disturbed by what is happening to the United States: bloated deficits, oppressive taxation, alleged global warming, rampant crime, and the influx of intruders who do not share the values and worldview of Americans. What are the central issues and topics that the average American pinpoints as of greatest concern? What issues stir widespread social and political fervor? For example, in the recent election, what concerns were most important to Americans as they cast their votes? By far, the top issue among all party groups was the economy. Healthcare was #2, followed by the size and power of federal government (“Economy Top Issue…,” 2010). But make no mistake: “The economy in general and the specific economic problem of unemployment or lack of jobs far outpace all other issues when Americans are asked to name the most important problem facing the country” (“Economy, Jobs…,” 2010, emp. added).
Beyond the economy, contemplate for a moment a few of the other issues that occupy the concern of many Americans:
Many other issues might be listed, but these are sufficient to make the point: Most Americans are more concerned about physical and financial matters than spiritual matters. When one contemplates the multitude of pressing concerns, it is easy to feel “scattered” and overwhelmed as to (1) what the real problem is and (2) the antidote.
While these matters certainly merit the attention and due concern of citizens, the fact of the matter is that the Founders of our Republic pinpointed a much more critical, logically prior issue. Consider the forthright remarks of three:
In a letter written to fellow Founder and signer of the federal Constitution, James McHenry, on November 4, 1800, Declaration signer Charles Carroll of Carrollton declared:
[W]hat motive can be stronger than the belief, founded on revelation, that a virtuous life will be rewarded by a happy immortality? Without morals a republic cannot subsist any length of time; they therefore who are decrying the Christian religion, whose morality is so sublime and pure…are undermining the solid foundation of morals, the best security for the duration of free governments (as quoted in Steiner, 1907, p. 475, emp. added)….
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