A quiet weekend at my hermitage, the Broad River cabin, and an opportunity to reflect on the consequences of the unexpected. Autumn is coasting to an end, the holiday season approaches, and winter is not far behind. Yet the way forward is not clear.
My Country enters into a new compact with its governors. Dissonant voices offer us little guidance about what to expect from our inexperienced leaders. Our government has been broken for years, or so it seems to me, with a Congress determined to deny our President whatever he proposes, and a President too junior to develop those cross-the-aisle rapports that are all-so-necessary. One Party now holds the executive, the legislative and (presumably) the judicial branch as well. Checks and balances have vanished. What will happen?
We find ourselves awash with information, so much that it’s difficult to organize or assimilate it. The so-called social media assault us with dubious conclusions and outright fake news. The war on science is in full stride. We face a daily menu of dissonance.
I am, as you know, and old college professor, and as such I put my faith in the young. Our country is blessed with energetic, thoughtful youth and I look to them for leadership. Will they bring forth a thoughtful, determined leader who can steer us out of this morass? Or will we drift into an era where slogans replace scholarship?
I do now know. But I have hope.
November 19, 2016.
“Much has been given us, and much will rightfully be expected from us. We have duties to others and duties to ourselves; and we can shirk neither. We have become a great nation, forced by the fact of its greatness into relations with the other nations of the earth, and we must behave as behooves a people with such responsibilities." - Theodore Roosevelt.