What We Learn from the Founding Fathers that Might Help us Deal with Cancel Culture and the Cultural Divide

Doc Cunningham
Sounding Off Social

Well, Perseverance has landed! That’s one way to describe the news when the mars rover made it to the far-out planet. We saw a collective sigh of relief and at the same time exhilaration of accomplishment in the reaction of the mission control team. Ever wondered what that feeling must be like? Their work involves building a bridge to research and advances in life.

Mission Control

We had a taste of that with the recent launch of SAICs Friday Night Flights and the community panel. For that initial rollout it could also be said that perseverance has landed too. There’re other events planned in the series including a Business Panel, Education Panel, International Panel, Women in Public Service Panel, Hometown Best Panel and Super Citizens Panel. One way we’re hoping people see the strategy is like building a bridge to the future. That’s probably how the Founding Fathers approached the post Revolution period as they put in place some key documents for the republic.

The Declaration of Independence, Constitution and Bill of Rights served as that bridge. We know that some people didn’t get equal access to the privileges of that bridge. How else do you explain the fact that it was ok for some to be born free and others born to be sold? How do you explain the fact that some were treated as second-class while others seen as an afterthought? We have an opportunity to revisit lessons from the past to build a better bridge to the future. But we have to decide on whether it’s a bridge to “…life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” or a bridge to “…life, liberty and the pursuit of conspiracy theories.”

Cultural Bridge

It’s why SAIC includes the Declaration of Emergence (DOE) as an added improvement to the original bridge. The DOE says, “We hold these truths to be self-evident that all are created equal and are endowed by the Creator with certain basic rights, civic values and hidden assets to live your best life.” These improvements to the original bridge are like what you find with construction work on physical bridges today. They’re improvements in street signs, road surface and guard rails. The DOE brings improvements in how we reach a higher level of citizenship through a better picture of civic/social issues.

The Founding Fathers might not have had a full view for how technology, partisanship and media proliferation would collide in the modern age. But they themselves took some cues about the underpinnings of the nation from the Greeks and Romans as well as the Enlightenment period of the 17th and 18th centuries. We might be in a different kind of period today that goes back and forth between enlightenment and entertainment. But there’re timeless civic values from the early Greco-Roman times that show the importance of:

1. Virtue

The familiar use of this word is often associated with how we treat and esteem women. That’s something that wasn’t necessarily at the forefront in America back then. However, the more lasting view of the word relates to having a sense of public-spiritedness and concern for the common good. Nowadays that can seem to be in short supply. How else do you explain when public officials approach their service as if it’s supposed to be like an R-rated movie with certain extremes as opposed to being AAA rated like a financial investment that has strong value over time?          

2. Temperance

Founding Fathers

This speaks to the importance of self-restraint in the public space and especially among public officials. We raise our children to avoid bullying which shows a lack of restraint and meanness. While there’re times for spirited discussions on a subject as happened among the founding fathers, temperance is needed to get past sticking points and roadblocks to serving the common good. In terms of a lack of temperance, how else do you explain when an official says another official needs to be removed from office before they’re even in office?

3. Fortitude

It took a lot of fortitude to prevail during the Revolution. Yes, there was military strategy as well but the grievance with the British throne was turned into a sense of purpose. Back then it took fortitude to defeat a power greater than themselves and most other countries. Today it takes fortitude (courage) to confront inequity, injustice and insecurity. The difference between then and now is in how some folks only want to pursue having a sense of grievance but not a sense of purpose. How else do you explain when people would rather pursue the spreading of conspiracy theories than the spreading of happiness?

4. Justice

There’s a cloud of falsehood that has hung over America throughout history. It might have started with the three-fifths clause then, but it has grown into something even worst and contributes to the post-election drama. The cloud has grown to the point of blocking the light and enlightenment. This helps to explain the cultural divide in one sense and today’s battle cries for justice in another. Someone once said, “justice will not be served until the unaffected are just as outraged as those who are.” Plus, as Dr King once said, “injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”    

Cloud of Falsehood

So a response to the ‘cancel culture’ and cultural divide fervor these days might be found in civics education. Civics is to culture as truth is to the Declaration of Independence. Without ‘these truths’ things can go haywire which is where we find ourselves in some circles today. SAIC is here to switch it up by how we reboot civics education, refresh civic engagement, reset cultural messaging and revive social spirit. Civic/social virtues tend to feed off of truisms not ‘what-about-isms’. This way after the pandemic, protests and elections (PPE) we can not only be survivors, but we can also be deep-divers in civics education towards our future success individually and as a nation.  

You can join the conversation and support our efforts with SAICs “Dear America 2021” Impact Statement at the Facebook ‘Hometown Chat’ Page here http://www.Facebook.com/seeamericaincolor.    

Acronyms List

Tracks: Protoje Ft Koffee – Switch it Up – https://youtu.be/Z04PEg2QwNY

Skip Marley Ft Various Artists – Survival 76 Cypher – https://youtu.be/zTOYqfnSyuU

Published by doc2comm

Author/Speaker, Blogger, Dreampreneur

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