Does America face inevitable decline? The symptoms are increasing, historians warn that great nations tend to fade after 200-250 years, and Mark Steyn’s new book, After America: Get Ready for Armageddon, predicts regretfully that odds are against the USA maintaining its greatness.
My own book Responsibility Reborn: A Citizen’s Guide to the Next American Century (Denali Press, 2011) takes a more hopeful, but still guarded, outlook. For an author talk last week at The Tattered Cover, one of the nation’s most famous independent bookstores, I opened on this somber note:
A Letter from the Future
The date is July 4. The year is 2076.
The former United States has broken apart.
In one part, foreign troops are stationed.
In another, Islam is the state religion.
In yet another, the pretense of constitutional government is maintained, but elections are sporadic, and only one political party is permitted.
In none of the parts are living standards even close to those of America in 2011.
Genuine individual freedom is but a distant memory in all of them.
Everywhere in what was once the USA, Jews live in fear and Christians must worship in secret.
In 2076, to a far worse degree than we already see around us today, education has become indoctrination, news has become propaganda, and culture has become a cesspool.
The self-evident truths of the Declaration of Independence are remembered in the category of Aesop’s fables and Grimm’s fairy tales, if they are remembered at all.
So much for America on its 300th birthday.
Will it play out that way? Will this country that we love fade from the scene before 2076? Hoping and praying it will not, I put hands to my hopes and feet to my prayers by carrying the responsibility message to everyone who will listen and living out that message in every way that I possibly can.