The Great Challenge: Maintaining American Freedom

Written by R.G. Yoho on August 19, 2013

Perhaps like no other time in our nation’s history, the United States is in trouble. But as serious as our problems might be, the solutions aren’t political. They are spiritual.

America is not a country; it’s an ideal. But when we lose the ideal, we’ll also lose the country.

Too many times we, as Americans, have taken freedom for granted. We have always known it. We have always lived under its shade. We drink from its fountain; we eat the fruits of its tree. But we never once pause to consider what our lives might actually be like without it.

Perhaps we should ask those few-remaining survivors of the atrocities of Nazi Germany. Ask them what freedom is and the loss of it really means.

The men who gave us this great experiment in democracy did so at great cost to themselves.

Are we not willing then to endure a little hardship or some unkind words? Are we not willing to set aside our favorite government programs if another citizen is going to lose his liberty because of them? Are we not willing to defend the freedom of another when our own precious activities have yet to be threatened?

Where is our courage?

I am afraid that we have forgotten what freedom really means. We have grown ungrateful. I fear that we have lost sight of the sacrifices made by so many and the blood that was spilled to maintain our liberty.

What is freedom?

First, let’s discuss what it is not.

Liberty is not the ability to do anything you want. Freedom without responsibility is anarchy.

There are rules which must be followed in any free society so that freedom might be maintained.

These rules govern each one of us and guarantee that we will enjoy the same liberties as every other citizen.

Freedom is also not the product of our politicians. It is a precious gift, bestowed upon each one of us by the hand of God.

Freedom requires that citizens make their own decisions and live with the consequences of those choices. The idea that we are not responsible for our actions is totally at odds with the concept of freedom.

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R.G. Yoho is a Western author who has published seven books, including “Death Comes to Redhawk,” along with a non-fiction work entitled “America’s History is His Story.”