One moment can change the world. Billions of human decisions are made every day across the globe. On the surface, most are innocuous or mundane, from changing a diaper to going to work. Sometimes they are history-altering, such as protests in the Ukraine or stock market crashes or rallies.
Sometimes unforeseen changes begins with a simple decision. St. Francis begins to rebuild an church one brick at a time…and a movement still vibrating begins. John Wycliffe begins translating the Bible into English and now billions can read the Scriptures in their own tongues. Bartolomeo de las Casas protests slavery and the long road to Emancipation begins. William Wilberforce stays in politics and fights for the end of slavery and scores of other causes for 50 years.
The challenges of the USA compel action, but voices of change are quickly drowned out in a sea of agitprop polemics. The current levels of hypocrisy and self-deception, short-term thinking and political manipulation are unprecedented in our history. It is not only the elites that are to blame. Millions of people are consciously or unconsciously capitulating to a fatalism of inaction. The gulf between professed principles and actual practices in widening daily. Consider:
- “Everyone” loves the concept of a balanced budget. But no one will even begin with small cuts in over bloated salaries.
- Immigration should be guided by law, but anyone supporting a modicum of regulation is a racist or xenophobe.
- Millions are looking for work, but unwilling to labor in fields or service jobs.
- Leaders decry the influence of lobbyists, then join their ranks as they depart “public service.”
- Amoral anarchy is lamented as millions quietly engage in vicarious games and entertainment venues.
- Tobacco is social evil number one…but billions of tax dollars flow from its consumption and we are making a worse mistake with “medical” marijuana.
- We advocate a healthy lifestyle, then pass out condoms to middle-school kids and offer “4th meal” fried food at midnight (to all the consumers of “medical marijuana.”)