Thursday, April 23, 2020
#114 / We Are Not Ruled
The picture above, taken from an article in City Journal, shows visitors inspecting the original version of the Declaration of Independence, in Washington, D.C. The article from which I grabbed this picture is entitled, "About Those Self-Evident Truths..." The article is worth reading, as a stimulus to civic engagement.
City Journal is a politically conservative magazine published by The Manhattan Institute, which describes itself as "a leading free-market think tank focusing on economic growth, education, energy and environment, health care, legal reform, public sector, race, and urban policy."
That article on "Those Self-Evident Truths" advances the idea that our "culture," as constituted by our "manners, morals, and beliefs," is in a state of significant collapse. At least, that's how I would provide a short synopsis.
I can't say that I am completely in tune with the article, but I was attracted to this statement, the second sentence in the article, with which I wholeheartedly agree:
We are not ruled.
That is, we are "not ruled" unless and until the "culture" that supports our democratic self-government has, in fact, totally collapsed. I am not willing to concede that it has.
If we want to maintain a nation that is "not ruled," and in which "self-government" is practiced in fact, then a lot more of us will have to get involved in government ourselves.
Where self-government is concerned, there aren't any shortcuts.