Thursday, January 7, 2016

The end of the day

"At the end of the day, what happens to our great nation? Who will care for her? Guide her? Protect her?"

"Does all this really matter? Really?" That is a question I have heard more than once from many in the Millennial crowd. Rather than tune in, many have decided to just tune out. Not really concerned with the news nor the facts these days. And politics? Forget about it. Even their feelings have become a bit frayed. So that just leaves self. And self is where many Millennials are turning to.

How did we get to this point? We need to care about this. The Millennials are our seed corn. Our future. In not too many years, they will be steering the ship. Running the joint. Well, it really started with us - the Boomers. We set the table. It was us that in the sixties sold part of our souls. It has been said that living through the sixties would either make us or break us. I found that to be true as the years have gone on. Some of the most decent people I know came through the sixties just fine. Unstained. And they have done well in life. However, some got mired in the 1960's ditch (so to speak). They never escaped. The sixties trapped them and their thinking. And unfortunately, many today are in our local, state and federal government.

I have tried to explain to Millennials as well as some from Gen X that even if they don't want to pay attention, they must. I have even apologized for what some in my generation have done to this country. Yes, some of the Boomers have caused the tilt.

However the parents of us Boomers, known as the Greatest Generation, did not cause any tilt. On the contrary, they unselfishly left home to fight a great war to preserve a free world. They came back after the war and "set a marvelous table" for us - the next generation. Growing up in the 1950s and early 1960s was a great time to be alive. The hope and promise of tomorrow abounded everywhere. 

Today in 2016, we will soon have a very big election. An historic election. Two of the people running on the Democratic ticket represent what I discussed earlier. People who never really made it out of the sixties. They still show the stains of that decade in their politics, in their lifestyle, and in their values. 

On the Republican side, there are a few who give me hope. They grew up during the Gen X era. Never tainted by the sixties, their vision on many important issues has clarity. Their sense of history is true, and not revisionist. They have a deep and abiding love for this country, the Constitution, our freedoms, and most of all, Almighty God who made this all possible. They are the last great hope to guide us out of the gathering darkness and back into the light. 

But they cannot do it alone. They still need the wise council of Boomers who are not stained by the sins of the sixties. And even more important, they need the support of the Millennials. And the Millennials who have tuned out, need to tune back in. Why? They are in the on-deck circle. They are next up. They need to pay attention. Learn. Learn from the mistakes of the past. Understand what American exceptionalism really means. And no Millennials, it does not mean anything braggadocios.

Sunset is coming. It is coming for many of us Boomers. Just like it did for the Greatest Generation, the end of the day will also come for us. But the end of the day does not have to come for our country.

If the next generation can become fully engaged, fully awake, and then grab the steering wheel, it will once again be "morning in America". It was President Reagan's dream in the 1980's. It can still be our dream today.    

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