My Ten American Holiday Wishes

It is juvenile to make wishes and even more so to believe they might come true. It is especially puerile for me to hope that my particular list of holiday wishes will actually come to fruition. But it is that time of year when we permit ourselves a degree of fantastical thinking and a smidgen of youthful optimism. So here are my dreams:

1.  I want to see the return of honesty. I await the day when people will be truthful in their deeds and words. This requires deep self-reflection on all our parts so when we say or do something we come from a place of hard-earned sincerity. An example would be the current protests of “rampant police racism” culminating in the execution style murder of two innocent officers. Did rampant racism really cause the two recent incidents that have ignited the fury of those promulgating the racism story? No: No evidence supports that thesis. The police have done far more to protect blacks than to harm them. Thus, the recent riots and murders are the result of some other underlying frustration. It is that hidden root of this discord that must be revealed. Those involved in the frays are the only ones with the capacity to acknowledge the misplaced anger of rioters and murderers. My hope is that prominent and powerful leaders will help, not hinder the process of revelation.
2.  I want to watch an unbiased mainstream news report. An old-fashioned report sans biases and fears of reprisal; emphasizing primary sources – not speculative and oftentimes-mindless meanderings – would provide the people of our nation with what we deserve. The media owes it to Americans to find and share the facts. A healthy dose of truth would be most welcome.
3.  I’d love to see the recent surge in racism quelled, not fueled. Since the 60s we have made monumental strides in eradicating bigotry and advancing the opportunities available to African Americans. Just look at our current political landscape – a Black President and Attorney General along with 10% of the House of Representatives. Such a landscape would have been unimaginable 40 years ago. We have surely come a long way. Black doctors, lawyers, business people, and newscasters are no longer an anomaly. They are very much the norm. So why now do we suddenly all feel so racially divided? I want an end to the divisiveness. As an aside I can safely say that almost all Americans have experienced the sting of prejudice. As a Jew I have. The way to conquer such antiquated beliefs is by succeeding. Becoming successful and productive, and contributing meaningfully to society goes a long way to eradicating misconceptions that are the root of prejudice.
4.  I pray for unity in thought and action among those of us who treasure individual rights and freedoms above all else. Let’s end the politically correct attempt to establish moral equivalency among nations and individuals embroiled in battles for survival. With regard to the Israeli/Palestinian conflict let’s not equate accidental deaths of children from Israeli strikes needed to dismantle hostile and active missile launch sites with intentional Hamas attacks on innocent women and children. The same holds true for mass murders of children in Pakistan and other nations. There is absolutely no excuse or rationale for intentionally killing children. We must put aside our political positions on this and similar issues. We must remember that right and wrong do exist. As a world we must condemn wrong actions, regardless of our particular political views.
5.  I yearn for unity in condemning the brutality of Muslim extremists. That means Muslim non-extremists, Christians, and Jews must stand as one and fight our anachronistic and growing foe. This requires real and continual action on the parts of individuals, groups, and Nations. Beheadings, limb amputations, rapes, kidnappings, forced conversions to Islam, public assassinations, and crucifixions have no place in the 21st century. They should be snuffed out with the same vehemence from whence they sprung.
6.  I pray for a way to aid less fortunate Americans: To help the poor and disadvantaged rise and succeed without diminishing the positions of those who have already struggled for success. Leveling the playing field should not require damaging those who have already succeeded. It should be done by enabling those who wish to succeed find a means to do so.
7.  I’d like to see an end to ad hominem attacks on politicians during political campaigns. Let’s hear what politicians truly believe; let’s have the opportunity to understand their visions and plans for implementation. Let’s avoid bringing them down through false character assassinations and the like.
8.  I’d like to see a functional government; one that values its constituents more than it does itself. This would be a government run by people who remain honest, support the views of Americans, build America up, think toward the future, and leave office when they can no longer help those whom they represent.
9.  I pray for America to regain its position as the world leader. We led not only as an economic force, but also a consistent moral compass. We have relinquished that role and now a void has formed. Voids these days tend to be filled by those who do not share our evolved values and beliefs. Let’s regain our primary position in the world before another less enlightened entity takes the world’s reins.
10.  Finally I hope for the day when we will unify under an American leader who delivers a President Kennedy type message that resonates with all Americans, “Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country.”  We all need to hear and feel that again.

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