On this 239th birthday of (old) America, there can be no doubt in anyone’s mind that our country is completely different than the one that the founding fathers envisioned.
Beginning in the 1960s, powerful forces have worked to transform America from the land of the free-thinking and free-speaking to the land of emotion-driven reactionaries. A very similar transformation happened in Germany immediately prior to the Nazis taking over that country.
Twenty years ago, I wrote a novel about powerful media moguls who conspire to destroy morality and patriotism in America. But no publisher would touch the manuscript. I see now that it was ahead of its time.
While the propaganda battle has been waged in our culture during the ensuing years, good people (whom the late Jerry Falwell called the “moral majority”) unfortunately decided to smash the snooze button. Only now are they suddenly waking up to find that it’s almost too late.
They underestimated the power of the elite who control the media, academia, and yes, Hollywood. Many parents underestimated the power of Hollywood’s influence on their children, and now, the children of Baby Boomers are waging a war against their parents’ standards of morality.
While growing up in Egypt in the 1950s and 60s, I witnessed how Nasser, the country’s dictator, used the media to create a “group think” throughout society. Now I am feeling déjà vu all over again.
Although many Americans feel ambushed by last week’s Supreme Court decision, many of us, who had watched this movie in our countries of birth, had sought to warn the public again and again. But we were accused of being alarmist (often by good people). They never saw this coming.
Now everyone has seen how five unelected individuals can shred the Constitution. It is time to wake up!
Or is it too late?
A generation that is biblically and historically illiterate, a generation that has replaced logic and reason with emotions and feelings, has given us people who shrug their shoulders and say, “If you can’t beat them, join them.” That is even more tragic than the loss of those who blatantly advocate for such transformation.
It is hard to resist the onslaught, however. The media throws around words like “equality” and “discrimination” and “love wins.” Their deceptive words seem true and pure, but they are actually an endless flow of mud into a once-pristine sea.
So what is the answer?
People must unite and resist this mudslide that is destroying democracy in America. People of good will — and not just those who identify themselves as Evangelical Christians or Conservative Catholics or Orthodox Jews — must fight back.
But that will require sacrifice. Yes, I said that dirty word: sacrifice.
Sacrifice of time, talent, and treasure.
One of the major impediments to doing this in the past has been our quest for comfort and financial security. Those we have placed above fighting for God and for country.
That must change if we believe there’s something still worth fighting for.
Are you ready?
Michael Youssef, PhD is an Egyptian-born American and founding rector of The Church of The Apostles in Atlanta, GA. His messages are broadcast 3,800 times a week into 200 countries through Leading The Way Ministries. He holds a PhD from Emory University in Social Anthropology.
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