AMER­I­CAN PUR­POSE

New Straits Times - - Opinion -

un­truth­fully and un­abashedly — even quot­ing re­li­gious texts — de­clare: “We stand to­gether with and for you, the best of ... (name of the na­tion)”!

Such a coun­try must surely be from the ranks of Third World na­tions.

Wrong.

That coun­try is the United States.

This litany of po­lit­i­cal, eco­nomic and so­cial deficits is a sore em­bar­rass­ment, and is by no means to den­i­grate or hu­mil­i­ate the US.

On the con­trary, it is a plea to that great na­tion to re­turn to the good that its found­ing fa­thers sought to de­fine, a great­ness that tran­scended parochial in­ter­ests and prej­u­dices.

The cor­ner­stone of those found­ing prin­ci­ples was the sup­port for free­dom, peace, equal­ity, jus­tice, se­cu­rity and pros­per­ity that Amer­i­cans would re­alise by com­mit­ting to, par­tic­i­pat­ing in and ben­e­fit­ing in a na­tion able to hold its own.

Values hos­tile to its own were forced on peo­ple who had evil de­signs on others.

That striv­ing for do­mes­tic and in­ter­na­tional jus­tice give moral pur­pose to the Amer­i­can char­ac­ter, a na­tion that would sup­port, de­fend and ad­vance the cause of free­dom ev­ery­where.

Con­ceived as a na­tion that would be a refuge for the sober, in­dus­tri­ous and vir­tu­ous, and for vic­tims of per­se­cu­tion, Amer­i­cans would show them­selves to be friends of hu­man­ity.

The founders did not think that a peace­ful and pros­per­ous na­tion was around the cor­ner, or be­lieve that free­dom, democ­racy, fun­da­men­tal rights and the ad­vance­ment of peo­ple’s in­ter­ests would be­come a uni­ver­sal norm.

But over the decades and cen­turies, Amer­ica pur­sued that vi­sion, un­wa­ver­ingly guided by its motto, “In God we trust”.

In knowl­edge, in­dus­try and busi­ness, the US and its peo­ple ad­vanced be­yond any­one else.

The na­tion’s un­par­al­leled wealth and power in­spired and, by ex­am­ple and ac­tion, gave hope to free­dom-lov­ing peo­ple to pur­sue and de­fend their as­pi­ra­tions for lib­erty, peace and progress.

That great Amer­i­can ex­cep­tion­al­ism needs to be reignited. The US must re­turn to the right­eous­ness of its found­ing cause.

Its peo­ple and lead­er­ship must reded­i­cate them­selves with the same in­tegrity and re­source­ful­ness that brought them ex­cel­lence and suc­cess.

RUEBEN DUD­LEY, Petaling Jaya, Se­lan­gor

AP PIC

Amer­i­cans and their lead­er­ship must reded­i­cate them­selves with the same in­tegrity and re­source­ful­ness that brought them ex­cel­lence and suc­cess be­yond mea­sure.

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