Yesterday was the 32nd anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. The reunification of Germany was a breach in the Iron Curtain that was piecemeal in the process leading to the ultimate fall of the Soviet Union. The event then, as now, is recognized as epochal. Such moments in history are often ignited by the courage of one individual who speaks the truth, standing in opposition to the pervasive judgment of those in power.
November 9, 1989, was no different.
President Ronald Reagan carried the theme consistently and courageously that the Soviet Union threatened, through totalitarianism, the dignity of mankind. Communism opposed every tenet of the Bill of Rights foundational to the United States Constitution. President Reagan spoke truth in the face of “the great lie.” A Soviet prevarication, stating that reducing an individual to conformity required of total government control, was in the best interest of society. Freedom was not only noncritical, it was calumnious.
Ronald Reagan believed that the Berlin Wall was a symbol of oppression. In his opinion, freedom and individual pursuit of happiness, through the destiny of one’s choice, was a God-given right to every citizen of the world. As he climbed to the podium positioned in front of the Brandenburg Gate on June 12, 1987, the historic words he uttered, “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall,” were not in his prepared remarks. In preparation with the White House speech writers, President Reagan had written in these words. They were at first removed by the White House staff as too volatile. Reagan wrote them back in. Then the State Department upon their review struck the phrase as too controversial. Reagan wrote them back in. Then the National Security Agency removed them as geopolitically destabilizing. President Reagan wrote them back in on the platform before he took the podium. When he spoke those words, they were from his own singular, personal conviction, read from his personal handwriting.
History now commends President Reagan for his steadfast courage to defend truth.
Truth always finds its own way, naturally illuminating the righteousness in man’s consciousness. Only lies need walls to impede people from hearing the truth. For the truth will set them free, exposing the essence of the false premise advanced.
Today, America still finds itself embroiled in the debate in reference to whether society is best served by limited or by expansive government. Critics of freedom, as the primary concern of government, argue that the American legacy was founded on slavery, not liberty. They say remnants of societal structure still reflect this legacy today.
The teaching of Critical Race Theory (CRT) in public schools was front and center in the most recent gubernatorial contest in Virginia. The compendium of the curriculum is opaque, controversial, and inconclusive in subject matter. It need not be. CRT is an extension of the 1619 Project, an essay on American history promulgated by the New York Times. The paramount theme of the exposé is that the American capitalistic system was based on the free labor of slaves, not free enterprise.
Yes, slavery existed in the early American colonies. It was an abomination.
It is necessary to discuss systemic cause and effect of injustices rendered on African American brothers and sisters. However, to come to the conclusion that the United States owes its very existence today to the past practice of slavery, and is therefore inherently evil, is at best misguided judgment, and at worst, a destructive lie.
There were two other integral elements of the American spirit that are just as instrumental in defining who we are today as Americans in character.
In 1620, the English Pilgrims landed at Plymouth Rock, Massachusetts. They left England in search of freedom of religion unencumbered by directives of the king. They simply sought rights of self-determination and government brought about by social contract under a higher power. This was equally determinative in defining the prelude of the American experience and its Constitution.
The Pilgrims or their purpose in coming to America had nothing to do with slavery. They did not seek more government in the New World. There wasn’t any. They did not seek any personal privilege for themselves. In the Mayflower Compact,they drafted their own laws of order. In executing the document, they laid the foundation for the transcendent truth that “all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”
It is this government incipient truth, a moral directive of the 1620 Project, that set America on a collision course toward the Civil War and the abolition of slavery.
The third element completing America’s societal DNA is voluntary immigration. The United States has always been a magnet destination for immigrants. The French honored us with the Statue of Liberty as a beacon of light to the “teeming masses.” No other country in the history of the world has been seen as such an opportunity for the oppressed. They came here, not because there was more government or conformity in society. They came here because the truth of freedom to pursue one’s own destiny resonated in their visceral being, to trust God in destiny realized, not government.
These three elements, interwoven into the fiber of the American character, are who we are as a country. Each element has held the other elements accountable for the greater good.
Slavery, as one of these elements, was a curse perpetrated on mankind. William Wilberforce in England made it his life’s mission to abolish slavery. England outlawed slavery in 1833 by the Slavery Abolition Act. Thirty-two years later in 1865, the United States formally abolished slavery with the ratification of the 13th Amendment to the Constitution. A grievous Civil War was fought to confirm America’s commitment to the 1620 Project.
It is fair and appropriate to discuss the outrageous abuses imposed on the ancestors of African American citizens. It is also relative to analyze the lingering impact, need for reform, and government policy adjustments of historical mistreatment. However, the purpose of reforms and future government policy should be measured to strengthen the essential transcendent principle, established by the 1620 Project, that still exists as the core fiber of America today, inalienable rights of self-determination and freedom. This principle is the desire of every citizen on the planet.
This truth honored was and is the foundation for reconciliation to the 1619 Project.
America’s divisions today can only be bridged by the continual commitment of all citizens for common purpose. Committing to the truth that the ultimate goal of government is to provide equality for all citizens in pursuit of happiness through a destiny of their choice in line with their religious beliefs, is the common mission.
Those who advocate socialism ignore the lessons of history. Totalitarian government demands conformity resulting in equal outcome of a lesser standard of living and the loss of individual freedom. The American colonies’ Declaration of Independence in 1776 declared that birth is not destiny. Communism, through elimination of individual rights, makes citizens slaves of the state. In totalitarianism, birth is therefore destiny. The 1620 Project, the American Declaration of Independence of 1776, and the ratification of the United States Constitution in 1789 were the building blocks of the foundation to support the truth that God-given rights are inalienable and are not the authority of government or mankind.
Those who propose to dismantle the codifying elements of America’s prioritization on freedom follow the same path of revolutionaries who seek to destroy government without a guiding principle for the establishment of a new government. President Reagan believed that American values of freedom, liberty and self-determination were eternity’s values. They are worth defending and protecting at all costs. He was not afraid of current opinions of the Establishment. He would not allow good to be called evil or evil to be called good.
As to the question, what would President Reagan say today in light of the crises facing America? He would not hesitate in his conviction that eternal truth will always prevail pursuant to its eternal imperative.
All that is required for truth to be victorious is for a people to believe in its virtue.
President Reagan might today demand of his own President, “Mr. Biden, defend the truth of the American spirit.”
My name is Marc Nuttle and this is what I believe.
What do you believe?