The Ballast Of The Ship / #theFreedomPapers #government #faith #God

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“Get ye out of the way, 

turn aside out of the path, 

cause the Holy One of Israel to cease from before us.”

Isaiah 30:11

 

Is multiculturalism a breakaway and/ or politically correct replacement of Judeo-Christian founding principles of government in the United States of America? Can we be a pluralistic nation that retains the Abrahamic God in the center? Are the ideas of the representatives in the Continental Congress’s outdated and needing to be modernized, or do they continue to be the distilled conclusion of much deliberation on how the colonies in North America were to begin to self-govern themselves?  

In the social-political light of what was at the time, an English king whom was inflexible, perhaps not advised well, and deaf to even the admonishment of members of his own Parliament, did the American delegates in these first two Congresses do the honest, selfless, critical thinking required to bring sound judgement, excellent public discourse, and responsible appraisal on just what kind of foundational principles were to be used to make decisions?

For the most part, these were not antiquated people filled with wishful thinking or ideas of grandeur, and self-preservation, but men earnestly aware of the gravity and timeliness of what they were doing. Certainly, one of the humblest of these, John Adams, stoked altruism, passion and immediacy, strengthening many a somewhat reluctant Congressional delegates to truly respect what was unfolding, nothing less than the birth of what would be the freest nation on Earth. This Adams had a few books with him throughout his life, and the most sought after of his books which he read was the Holy Bible. It guided him, and it guided George Washington. It guided and was invoked by Thomas Jefferson and practically the entire host of men who were known as the founding fathers. 

Fast forward about two hundred and fifty years to the present year of 2018, and we find that throughout the American coasts and in many pockets within the middle of America, we have increasingly become a nation of many different ethnicities and religions. Our Bill of Rights, and our Declaration of Independence bring to attention the need to have our God-given human rights respected; that they not be stripped away from us, but safeguarded and brought into remembrance from generation to generation. So it is that the ballast of our ship which has inspired freedom and liberty for all is the very Word of God then. This is true for all American citizens though they may choose to not believe in the Abrahamic God. It is true that the founding principles of the United States of America rest in the faith that the God guides and protects us according to his Word (and our alignment to his Word). The Buddhist, the Hindu, and even the ‘Spiritualists,’ are given protection to be at ease in their spiritual life and worship or not worship. The Christian is likewise  afforded protection to proclaim God’s Word and to take on his or her Christianity as a profession, doing good works and raising families according to their faith.

Our cities, more so than our towns, have become pluralistic societies teeming with multiple cultures, each with their own faiths. The residents of New York City, for example, are millions upon millions of people living in relative harmony with each other though they be so different from one neighborhood, and one street to another. Their are Jewish enclaves, Hispanic and African-American enclaves, and vast swaths of city land that is a mix of culture, sound and color, unlike any other city or town in the world. 

Their are multiple cultures then living all in the same nation. But should multiculturalism be identified as an ‘ism?’ Is it a new way of thinking about society? Is the multicultural aspect of the United States of America grounds for redefining the foundational ballast that has kept the ship upright, even paving the way for the welcoming of so many cultures across the centuries? 

As elected representatives in government take their seats, in the Executive Office, in the U.S. Congress, and the U.S. Supreme Court, how should they reflect the social demographic of the country? Should the Judeo-Christian backbone be discarded as the main identifying faith of America?  Inevitably, elected officials bring with them their faith and viewpoints, and this impacts their decision making process to some degree. Elected officials can strive for political correctness that mirrors their regional voters. Good is good, and citizens want to live in relative peace, be able to achieve goals, and perhaps raise families. Their surely can be and are ways and means on how the commonality of all our faiths can morally bridge together constituents. Our representatives accomplish this daily task while each still maintaining their core faiths and beliefs. Their is inter-faith commonality with the Christian commandment to love and treat each other as we would like to be loved and treated. 

Be it so that their are aspects of the American culture that are so liberally intertwined, there continues to be a remnant that is under the Christian faith-umbrella, which is retaining not only the Abrahamic God, but the God of Jacob, the God of Paul, and the God who gave us his only begotten son, his express image in the flesh, the very Word Himself, the Lord Jesus Christ. 

The United States of America IS one nation under God. Pledging allegiance to this ideal, is to pledge support for all the freedoms and liberties afforded under the founding Judeo-Christian principles the nation thrives best on. Be one a Hindu, a Shi’a Muslim, or atheist, the Judeo-Christian scripture which inspired the critical, moral thinking of the Congressional delegates, of George Washington out on the battle field and as our first President was and is the ballast of the American ship which protects our individual right to live at peace and pursue happiness. Though it is a subjective opinion, elevating the notion of a pluralistic society to a faux eloquent ideology that ‘multiculturalism’ is some new modern understanding of what the United States of America is at its core, as opposed to reaffirming that we are one nation under the God would be erroneous and begin to number the days of America; a city on a hill. Multiple cultures in one nation is something that IS, and not a philosophy or way of life. Certainly, being one nation from many nations, the U.S. has enriched itself in very good ways, yet it becomes ever more important to retain its founding principles and the hot scripture which inspired its creation. It is not robbery to even say that the Lord protects the United States, as said earlier, according to his will, and our alignment to his Word. Defending the kind of ballast we use on our ship (the country) is pivotal to maintaining the boat on a steady course and free from the danger of capsizing. As President George Washington said, “it is impossible to rightly govern a nation without God and the Bible.”

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Releasing the Negative Anchors / #theFreedomPapers #education

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Understandably, every individual will have different view points on local, national, and global issues. In the United States of America, differences found therein between those affiliated with the Democratic and Republican political parties can and are addressed cordially in the forum of our U.S. Congress. Through measures of time speaking allotments given to congressional house representatives and senators, we afford space to each other to broach the pressing topics of the day. Our congressional leaders sit and listen to one another following parameters of conversation that follow prescribes rules of engagement. These leaders discuss how to move forward on a variety of issues, and ultimately write bills, or law-binding legislation which shapes the governmental process and affects the entire population of the country.

What kind of educational priorities are required to shape and create courteous, public orators who can think critically, be mindful of how they say what they say, and go forth to responsibly address the nation’s dilemmas? There are human rights issues, military deployment and foreign war spending matters, balancing the federal budget (which prioritizes how and on what money is spent on, and from where it will be made), the creation and cutting of regulations which protect and allow business and enterprise to grow on the local level, adequately solving immigration, bringing balance to global trade as it pertains to the United States of America, protecting the environment, curtailing the opiod crisis that is a major health crisis for so many, and so many more matters of local, national, and global importance. In order to talk about these, our congressional leaders must speak articulately and persuasively to the rest of the congressional representatives and senators which belong to both houses of Congress to find common ground where need be, in order to bring resolutions forward and have them become law.

Informed citizens hold these governmental leaders accountable by observing their work and their intents, bringing questions forward on the grass-roots level, through social media platforms, through published essays on the internet and through local newspapers, through television network news shows, and through daily conversation with each other at the local level. The question I put forth though is, is it enough? 

  1. Do we in the United States of America have enough well-informed, advocating critical thinkers on the local level to effectively patrol and affect the process of democracy at the highest levels of government; the congress, the executive office and judicial levels, from local courthouses to the U.S. Supreme Court?

As it is, I posit that we do not actively create a wealth of advocating critical thinkers who will responsibly bring forth questions, ideas and interjections using sensible parameters of discussion and communication, and that such a responsibility must rest upon the shoulders of individuals. Parents and educators are the first line of instruction in our lives, and these hold the greatest intellectual power in shaping our view points. In that same manner, parents and educators do not operate in a vacuum, but are themselves shaped through the informational input of modern media, educational upbringing, and the views of their own families and those in their community, to an extent. So the whole village affects the whole village, and we are all in the boat together, so to speak. Hence, though parents and educators be the crucial spokespersons that shape hearts and minds, they (we) are but special filters of the local and national village. It is then possible to positively (and negatively) bring about social change from any level, given that the sources of change be consistent, act responsibly, and in the best of cases, intend to altruistically seek the empowerment of hearts and minds, rather than the actual controlling of hearts and minds.

We have an uncanny sense of telling when someone is being true or fake. Sometimes we can be fooled for a time, “but you can’t fool all the people all the time, (Bob Marley).” Eventually, we realize the real intents of the heart in each other over time. People get voted out of office and new ones enter. We start and end relationships, and we incorporate new ways of thinking, making us more mentally flexible. These are the traits of critical thinkers. We are a bit more braver to present thoughts, speak up, stand up for our rights and the rights of others, and we believe that we can make a difference. 

The more we are mindfully aware that our young American democracy is helped through the rise of selfless advocating critical thinkers, the greater are the checks and balances of power on each other, and the richer our national conversation is kept. We begin to move away from allowing sensationalist news headlines sweep us away, and we begin to stick harder to finding common ground in releasing the social anchors that weigh us down. 

This Time Next Year, or We Will Address It At A Later Time / #patriots #criticalthinkers #Zuckerberg #theFreedomPapers #politics

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Last night, a king of the world’s most widely used social media network, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg, was brought before United States senators to answer questions on the improper use and manipulation of intelligence gathering of individuals who have signed up to use its social service with the intent to maliciously use such information to gain national political advantage, even perhaps, help attain the highest elected seat in the country, the Presidency. Apparently, the tycoon directed his company to craftily create an individual background database from… its individual background database of people to mine the information, through the employment of algorithms as a political strategy to target its users, and sell, lend or give this information to leftist, or social-progressive political campaigns. It is alleged that people were targeted, censored, and had their basic privacy violated as the social media network did as it pleased in complete collusion, acquiescence and knowledge of Democratic party elite leadership. All this occurred during the administration of charismatic leader, former-President Barack Obama.

Included in the allegations, it is posited that efforts by human rights groups, organizations and individuals, aligned with the grassroots ‘pro-life’ effort to end the daily slaughter of thousands of human beings in the womb were censored, limited, targeted, and altogether oppressed through this social media network, as were all who did not agree with the social-progressive perspective. It is then as if anchors and darkness were placed on and around all not in line with the agenda of the hierarchical social-progressive political movement. What is most interesting though is not that this specific instance of social-political malfeasance was orchestrated, but that the scope of social-political collusion does not extend to other social-media networks. 

Are these not intentional trespasses against the 4th Amendment? What if the social media network leader being questioned in our nation’s capital had been on the political right? (I would still be writing this essay.)

“The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”

If all run a race, yet all but one team is hamstrung with darkness, censorship, targeting with malicious intent to malign character, and entrapment through the direction of operations using sophisticated technological instrumentation, then is not such a race a farce, and a complete sham? Could it be that these chieftains as the leaders of all of these social media networks whom are primarily all on the political left, were raised up and empowered to hold such positions and command such networks, so that down the line social progressive political elite could swoop in with dynamic dexterity and tap such treasure troves of intelligence gathering?

The present reality that conservative Americans are being sidelined, especially those who are outspoken critical thinkers in defense of the fairness and balance spoken of in Judeo-Christian scripture and our U.S. Constitution is, and has been, the very blueprint on how to proceed forward without vehemence, but an ever watchful eye to safeguard the human rights, freedoms and liberties we enjoy. It is the very regard of patriots, be they red, white or blue, to protect the United States of America and its people from foreign and domestic threats. The defense and creation of individual freedom and liberty on a daily basis with the aim of awakening such fervor in each other is of the utmost importance to each of us fellow Americans, as brothers and sisters. 

Choosing altruistic love, hope, righteousness, kindness, and a desire to be a principled light unto each other has clearly and evidently been shown to be a dire, daily need. We must fight intellectually with passion, with heart and mind, and not fist and gun, not violence and hatred, envy or scorn. We must raise ourselves and our children to be critical thinkers who actively participate and create the democratic process for one another, especially when all around us are focused on their own personal and professional lives. Though vast portions of the citizenry may not always be aware of how a few fight the good fight for them, the civic duty to ensure a fair democracy and true protection of freedom and liberty is pivotal if the nation is to survive. Education is paramount. Valuing critical thinking and civic duty, individuality of thought; all these continue to pave a path forward and a light through which to see how and why the nation was founded, and how and why the nation should be prolonged. It is not about a song, a piece of parchment, sentimentality, nostalgia or strong emotions, but about the God-bestowed rights that we must keep mindfully alert of. Without these, all is lost. Personally, though I be far from perfect, this is how I was raised, and this is how I will live until my life or good name is brought down to the ground. 

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Hindering The Rise of Critically Thinking Patriots / Strengthening the Rise of Critically Thinking Patriots / #theFreedomPapers #USA #education

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“Critical thinkers can arrive on the scene from anywhere. We are, in our best moments, the protectors and creators of freedom and liberty.”

-Coach Bill

The rise of non-tribal, critical thinkers is the subject of much anticipation amongst established political forces with leftist inclinations. Meeting them before they are born, an intricate system of  soft oppression based on special interests, lays the groundwork that steers, molds, channels, and re-directs human thinking and aspirations for those fortunate enough to escape human abortion from the womb. What is more, an array of injections carrying heavy metals and brain-damaging, carcinogenic ingredients, are given to American citizens which slow down brain function, and debilitate a human’s neurological prowess causing us to lose the ability to speak, move, write a sentence, or in the most extreme, yet altogether common, the loss of critically thinking.

To this reality, is American freedom, American liberty something that was created in 1776 only?, and is it something elusive that is defended in distant lands through the toil and battle of our brave soldiers, only? Can it be that freedom and liberty has a front line of defense and a fountain of creation that is of an intellectual sort? Was it not the very speeches, discourses, and arguments in the first and second Continental Congress amongst the delegates which led to the distilled clarity of understanding of a vision that focused on human rights, the creation of a government for and of the people? Yes, it was the very talking and describing, the very back and forth discussion about what the delegates saw as grievances exacted upon the colonists settlers by the English King at that time, which led them to charter a new manifestation of destiny in the clearest terms possible. It was the choosing to meet and hold forums to share ideas, displace old understandings, and sharpen a new system of self-governance which literally created the freedom and liberties written down on parchment, and in the times to follow through our Bill of Rights.

Subsequently, all the signers of the Declaration of Independence ended up on the English crowns hit list. Some were killed, others had their wealth destroyed, and yet others had to leave their homes as British troops followed orders to search and destroy them. Even so, these critical thinkers were the brave one’s. They knew the risks involved in being the face of a new American humanity which defied the greatest military strength known to mankind at that time. 

Jump forward to the present time of 2018, and I tell you that we are facing a far more subtle, and dangerous threat to American freedom and liberty. It is coming from so many different avenues that it could become overwhelming to simply consider identifying, much less confronting, each threat to democracy and liberty. 

  1. We are inundated as mega-input recipients of information, and scarcely digest what is said to us through social media news outlets before more information is given to us, much less, we are not aware that we must become sources of creative output.
  2. Our entertainment-focused culture system distracts us from realizing the importance of becoming creative, democratic sources of output in our homes, our communities, and on a national and global level.
  3. Academia, starting at grade school, largely focuses on having us develop into laboring professionals, and not critical thinkers who actively participate in constructive, meaningful ways in the defense and creation of freedom and liberty.

Have no fear though, but empower yourself though a peculiar form of education that goes beyond the academic institutions and our national news networks. Empower yourself through the practice of participating on local and national issues, and being a responsible, and respectful creator of discourse. This implies that if you have something to say on a subject, write about it and publish it on the internet. Practice your eloquence of speech and intellectual acumen through writing and conversation on the issues of your interest that may be of local, national, and global interest. If you have a yearning to describe a middle path that may bring a solution forward on a topic, organize your own public forum. Start by simply having tea or coffee with a friend to talk on an issue. This is tantamount to a practicing maneuver, wherein we sharpen our public speaking skills and test our ideas and understanding on a subject matter. Seek not to only share conversation with those who will agree with you always, but develop a knack for respectful conversation that considers the view point of the other. How we say what we say (paraverbal awareness ) is crucial to what we say. That is to say, the manner in which we pace, intonate, emphasize, implore, create a rebuttal, is what separates people interested in reaching deeper levels of democratic discourse, with those simply looking to unload and not really listen to someone’s opposing or different view point.

Outflanking established social news media conversation is so important for the protection of freedom and liberty. The established news sources deftly pick who talks, what is talked about, with whom, and for how long. Whereas the conversation amongst two or more individuals in a town’s coffee shop, or though written conversation online in essay format, can be akin to being more organic, spontaneous and unpredictable. Many a times, having verbal, real-time conversations on a repeated basis can be downright tiring. You may not always be bright eyed and bushy tailed on the profession of constantly meeting in town to discuss the issues of the day, though it is wholly probable and worthy to do so. As an alternative, we have the internet and what are known as blogs. These are free to create and can be used to publish essays and recorded video which can be fanned out and be accessible throughout the world the moment you hit the publish button. The personal security of having a conversation as a nation and a global populace becomes easy through the advent of a personal blog website, such as on Blogger.Com, WordPress.Com, Google Plus, or Linked In. Essays allow people to calmly read ideas, analyze them, and digest such information with greater comfort. Real shouting matches do not happen, and only those consistent essayists with coherent and cohesive thought processes stand apart from the pack. 

The goal for each American citizen willing and able to be part of the democratic process of creating liberty and defending freedom through such a medium then, becomes more about critical thinking that reaches hearts and minds. The writers will find that they must find not so much that they have to be politically correct through the watering down, or censoring of their ideas, but to write with such style that the topic points they put forward are understood, that they have coherency, intellectual profoundness, good articulation, and reaching sensical conclusions aligned with the wide swath of common sense that emanates from our countries founding principles.

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There you have it then. Freedom and liberty is but one step away of being switched out for a counterfeit version of a billowing flag. The defense and creation of freedom and liberty should be the number one taught subject in schools and universities. This awareness of the importance of safeguard human rights and the American way of life of limited government, of self-governance by the citizenry, doe not spell a recipe for anarchy and lawlessness, but a refinement and further manifestation of all that is good and right for the strengthening of the United States of America. A country that does not merely exist on physical land between the Atlantic and Pacific ocean, but one that is constantly born and comes into being in our hearts and minds. 

Immigration & Sovereignty in the United States of America / #criticalthinkers #democracy #empathy #socialresponsibility #positivedisruption

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In a round table discussion with American citizens from Chile, Puerto Rico, Colombia, and Mexico, and me, being born in California to caucasian parents of Anglo-Saxon and Cuban descent, and a father to my children who’s mother is of Guatemalan and Central American heritage, I seeked to bring the conversation towards the dire democratic need to bring greater gravity and intellectual responsibility to local and national discourse on immigration into the United States of America. Everyone brought forth their view points and we were all in accord throughout the talk. Below is a capsule of the sentiment and feeling shared by all involved in the conversation.

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Allowing the entrance of sixteen million Central Americans during the Obama presidency was an act of compassion, as much as it was a political move to change the demography of America. Surely, these sixteen million immigrants will find a path to citizenship, grow families, and within fifty years, triple in size, creating a massive voting bloc. It is wholly responsible that attention be given to securing the nation’s southern border, and channel further immigration from Central America through legal processes. That said, it is important to understand what has led to the exodus of Central Americans into North America. 

Throughout the twentieth century, the United States of America exacted wealth, goods and labor out of Central America, in effect, creating Banana Republics, or countries who’s sole economic output was completely dependent on the U.S. purchase of their fruit. During this time, the United States government allowed and collaborated with leaders of these countries and tacitly allowed the near-slave labor of the lower classes, especially, the indigenous populations. Educational empowerment of these laborers was not a priority, only their laborious output towards the undiversified economic system they sweated and toiled under. Dictators, and socially-narrow minded political leaders were allowed to rise, human rights grievances were ignored, and countries like Guatemala entered an economic system wherein they became subservient laborers to North America. Civil wars, paramilitary groups, and the absence of a functioning education system that was inclusive for all members of each countries societies were virtually non-existent for the lower economic classes, and this aided the inability for the smaller Central American nations to have cohesive, democratic societies. This situation weighed down the possibility of  labor and entrepreneurial economic development, tilting the social-economic balance to favor those closely connected to the government and main industries, even creating what is known as latifundia’s, or economic fiefdoms where economic and political power was kept out of reach for the ‘common folk.’ This construct of living rendered social and economic conditions of stagnation that perpetuated until the end of the twentieth century, seeing the worst manifestations of itself between the 1930’s and 1980’s. 

Seeing the fallacy of this economic arrangement, in the 1990’s the economic focus of Costa Rica and in a lesser way, Guatemala for instance, began to turn inwards, looking to diversify and become more self-sustainable. This led to a new pivot in trade practices between Central America countries and the United States in the 1990’s, effectively bringing an end to an economic system based on exporting one fruit mainly only to one country. Furthermore, the creation of NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement) in 1994, including the introduction of sweeping governmental economic reforms in Central America did not directly increase the economy of these nations, but renegotiated trade to favor the more established countries of Mexico, the United States of America, and Canada, primarily favoring established farms and distributors of goods, at the expense of small farmers. Even so, the reality of NAFTA, sounded an alarm of social-political-economic mindfulness at the local, grass-roots level for those at the bottom of the agricultural and economic goods ladder. These small farmers and laborers began to realize that they needed to critically raise their voices, in order to begin the process of safeguarding their livelihoods. Thus, NAFTA indirectly positively promoted the beginning of a more strident local community activism in Central America, helping to introduce for the first time ever, the beginnings of a social-political identity that was not in total servanthood to the United States of America. Be that as it may, the stunting of decades of the economic relationship with its North American neighbor left the region far behind the technological and industry-focused achievements found in the U.S., which was commercially poised to enter the digital computer age.

In 1999, I visited Guatemala, and what I found was a land and people rich in culture, heritage, energy, hope, crime, destitution, unruliness, and institutionalized racism towards the indigenous population. At once yearning to move forward while being weighed down by its past, Guatemala,  is a vibrant story filled with pain, sadness, social change, and economic class oppression. I saw indigenous mothers, in the full colorful garb associated with their Mayan culture resting on the streets with their children. My brother-in-law at the time, Tito, a good man, wanted me to see Guatemala in all its truth. I saw men renting babies and asking for money at stop lights at three in the morning. I saw great movement, division and the feeling of everyone together in a fishbowl both interconnected and yet quite divided. He took me, his entire immediate family and mine in this car down the most poverty-stricken streets with open sewage systems, and he took me to the cultural landmark of Peten, outside the capital to see the Mayan ruins left by the former civilization. To this day, the juxtaposition of the shared humanity found in that countries culture haunts my heart, and even brings me to tears. 

I understand why its people, as do the people of other Central American countries yearn to live in America. For all our faults, for all our imperfections, we have a system of life that continues to be the freest of all in the world. In the United States, we prize education as the best investment towards creating individual opportunity. Things are far from perfect in the U.S. There is a current ideological struggle to exact competing visions of what kind of country we are to have. Their is a shortage of advocating critical thinkers who could be participating in the creation of refreshing our democracy; even holding both ideological political camps accountable to sensible, intelligent discussion on the issues of the day. This is less so in Central America. Their social, economic, and political development is far behind the democratic ideals that we are always on the cusp of achieving in large scale ways in the United States of America. That is to say, the manner of local and national conversations on what is talked about, by whom, and with the degree of intellectual honesty and profoundness that should be had is not in full bloom. Nay, it is but a seed in the minds of its people.

So it is, in my round-table discussion with the American citizen of Chile, Colombia, Puerto Rico, and Mexico, we all agreed that the U.S.A. has taken much from Central America, and has given back little. Yes, allowing sixteen million Central Americans into the United States of America during the Obama administration will eventually create a formidable voting bloc and ethnically impact the face of North America this century. The move by the current Republican administration of President Donald J. Trump has already signaled a willingness to create a path of citizenship to immigrants who are documented and undocumented residents in the land, and to continue to allow immigrants to enter. Howbeit, the continuance of immigration is to now move through a more responsible process of legal migration. This will curtail the massive influx of new and future immigration, giving the U.S. respite to assimilate those here already. As it is, the United States began the process of ‘giving back’ to Central America in a massive way, with the opening of its southern border. It did this by not strengthening adequately its border patrol, and through the subtle political directive from the Obama administration to the countries judiciaries (its courts) to create a sanctuary status across our land.

It is pivotal to keep in mind that the American economic trade relationship with Central America during the twentieth century played a crucial role in creating the economic poverty of countries like Guatemala, Honduras, Ecuador, Belize, and great swaths of Mexico. Of course, the leaderships of these countries also played an important role in maintaining a social-political order which placed social, political, and economic down pressure on the ability for people to move upwards on the social, political, and economic ladder. It would not be fair then to obtusely label the United States of America as the only creator of the issues being put forth here. Past Presidents, like Mexico’s Ernesto Zedillo and Vicente Fox were of the pedigree of leaders who did not prioritize the upward mobility of its people, but who’s actions as a collective whole, did not ultimately change the status quo, but kept it largely intact.

Where does all this leave the U.S? Should we ostracize each other forever, seeking to displace one another from finding a middle way to move forward on so many issues. I believe that it is time for a new era of democracy in the United States of America, where parents and educators lead in the mindful awareness that developing ourselves to be critical thinkers who are not politically tribal, and can bring sober discussion points to local and national conversation on the issue of immigration and all other issues besetting us is required.

Critical thinkers create democracy. Critical thinking is easy and difficult to achieve. It requires selflessness. This is altruistic, and social-political altruism is difficult to achieve when we are surrounded by the special interests of short-sighted individuals and organizations who seek  their own welfare foremost, before what is most practical for the rest of the country. Critical thinkers who participate in democracy go out of their way to show impartiality. These are not given to the sensationalism of issues, but are known for being fair and balanced in their approach. They mediate also discussion and bring forward salient points oft ignored in the twenty-four hour news cycle. Critical thinkers are writers who flesh out the things left unsaid which directly have led to the creation of current circumstances. These are not given to ‘crowd thing’ or (forgive me) ‘herd mentality,’ but are welcomed voices and minds that ‘call out’ what is right.

The compassion and political move to weaken the southern border security is in the past now. How do we move forward in the present and future? Do we continue to allow unrestricted entrance into the U.S.? The elected leaders and judicial judges of the land who partook in this system played a role of compassion, even as they understood the political ramifications of allowing so many immigrants to enter in such short time. I empathize with the Central Americans at the bottom of the social-economic ladder, even as I understand that the inception of sixteen million people will change the face of the land, and that we must control the flow of further immigration. The need to fortify the southern border is necessary in light of the past and present compassion being exercised by the Democratic and Republican administrations of Obama and Trump. We are a sovereign country. The wall system of actual physical walls, and strengthened border security needs to be put in place. Greater attention to rebuilding the U.S.’s crumbling infrastructure, the creation of jobs through the support of innovation and critical thinking citizens has to become central to its focus. The pockets of poverty, and myriad social maladies that are existent have to be dealt with, before continuing to allow another massive immigration wave to enter. We should also look to help our southern neighbors to develop their educational infrastructure to help create the conditions for new industry and social mobility from the ground up.

Parents and educators are on the front lines in prioritizing the development of advocating critical thinking generations of American citizens who will streamline the quality of the conversation on the local, national, and global points of discussion. In the absence of this kind of altruistic form of democracy, I posit that we are always just one step away of letting democracy begin to stagnate. In conclusion, the discourse on immigration or any other matter that besets us is best had in the light of many critical thinking individuals participating and helping steer such discussions to be sensible, intellectually rich and honest. The historical performance on each issue which these critical thinkers advocate on will be an important parameter or measure through which we, as a nation, ascertain the vibrancy of our democracy.

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Critical Thinkers Create The #NewEra / #criticalthinking #politicalscience #family #education

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3. How does a teacher create understanding that leads to empowerment in his or her students? What can be done to impart value on the urgency of seizing the moments we call hours and days? 2. Why should new generations of students care enough to make themselves mighty? Where are the Frederick Douglass’s of our time? Are we not them? Is the time of greatness past? What needs to be instilled to create champions out of ourselves?

Is it so that modern culture anticipates and downplays the rise of our greatness, switching it for a commercialized version of human achievement and performance? 1. Can it be so that we are oppressed, and don’t even know it?

What is a critical thinker and why are they so valuable to society? 

What are critical thinkers capable of producing? 

How do we teach critical thinking?

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The numbering of the above questions was not done in reverse of importance, but in reverse of impact to your intellectual digestion of the thought process being conveyed. A critical thinker is independent in thought and that requires intellectual bravery and ingenuity. These ask questions to themselves, seeking truth, observing balance, and introducing morality into each perspective. Critical thinkers lead in the establishment of setting parameters towards sensible, respectful discussion with others, acting as defacto umpires, even as they take the lead in edging conversation forward. More so, critical thinkers anchor their motives not to what is the best available outcome of a conversation, but to having conversations which communicate care above the development of verbal and written communication. In this manner, critical thinkers are identified by others as fair and balanced and independent of seeking self-advantage.

The value these bring to society is immeasurable. The ideal of democracy is sustained with critical thinkers because they call out unfair or shallow discussion points and introduce better tracks of communication which may lead to solid, practical solutions. Critical thinkers don’t just ‘get informed’ through the reading of newspapers, the listening in of television news shows, or combing over social media news, but are ‘output creators’ of content warping local and national conversation on social issues towards greater coherency and intellectual purity. Again, the ability to raise the democratic level of discourse, stop senseless ‘dead end’ sensationalism and re-compass discussion adds gravity to the founding principles on which the United States of America was founded upon.

Take for instance the discourse in both Continental Congress’s nearly two hundred and fifty years ago: John Adams, our second president and father to a future president in those times, appears to have been the driving force that pushed critical thinking amongst the congressional delegates. He was a Christian who read scripture and tirelessly circumvented between cities and towns spreading critical information that sustained and moved people to have hope in a future of self-governance. In the Continental Congress itself, it was Adams who cajoled Thomas Jefferson to greater rigor and action, it was Adams who realized that silent usurpers from England (now our political and cultural friend) crafted obstacles and looked to flummox conversation leading towards greater understanding that a better relationship with Britain was needed that respected the human dignity of its colonists in the ‘new world,’ and that if this was not possible, then eventually, full independence was needful. It was Adams, a simple man with no guile, who brought a zeal to the congressional conversation and throughout the colonies which got everyone from Samuel Adams to George Washington getting more serious about the endeavor to ascertain better human rights through better representation across the Atlantic in England, and ultimately complete political separation when this avenue was closed off by the English King George III.

Critical thinkers are so important then. They wake up the good fire within us and they help stoke it if and when it grows dim. Farming these intellects is not an easy task though. The temptation to make others think like us makes our thinking feel validated over the long run. Rather than having an innumerable cadre of like-minded thinkers, it is better to have a cadre of open-minds that are not subservient to one form of governmental direction, and one form of being fair and balanced, but that ARE adamantly (pun intended) resolute on thinking for themselves irrespective of the sway of a political party. Thus, the track records of decision making and political action of such will show no propensity to favor one politic over another, but to favor the caring of humanity OVER the caring of the constructs humans make. Be these constructs political parties with their perspectives, or popular social issues which have arisen from individuals at the local level or through national organizations and governmental agencies.

Each new generation of humanity ‘should be given the bone’ that critical thinking creates  freedom and safeguards liberty, starting with their own individual freedom and liberty. Likewise, each new generation should be cautioned to be aware that efforts and constructs exist to codify such minds and hearts to magnetize towards particular special interests. This is important. You can’t achieve lasting and meaningful positive social breakthroughs if you have not first achieved intellectual liberty as an individual. To do so, the toning and strengthening of the mind is paramount. In 2017, Dinesh D’ Souza, an American of Indian descent, called out academic institutions across the United States of America for being steering students towards socialist doctrine. He put forth that each new generation of academic students was being afforded one political perspective in a consistent manner over another. He said, if I understood him clearly, that American academia was overly socialist-progressive, or leftist, instead of engendering students to be open-minded critical thinkers. In his very human way, sometimes with greater delicateness than at other times, Mr. D’ Souza emphasizes the need for a better political balance through the rise of genuine academic institutions that favor the respecting of human intellect as older generations help form and mold these. D’ Souza signals out that part of the great political divide of American citizenry is a consequence of such educational imbalance.

In such a fishbowl, can new and mighty men and women naturally rise to be leaders? Surely, we have a great many vociferous minds and hearts that lead in local, national and global discourse, but many of these pay tribute not to altruism, but again and again to one set of politics. I posit that the creation of critical thinking minds can happen at any time, and in any country that has respect and appreciation for the importance of human rights. Education is the key to this kind of intellectual liberation, though. How can we have the wherewithal and confidence to positively warp the direction of social issues if we ourselves do not have the understanding of how an individual can powerfully and positively affect society? Far too often, we see what happens in the absence; instead of using our words we get physical, we fight and kill each other.

“Knowledge is power,” then, but the critical, altruistic application of knowledge is power in motion. Teachers and parents are on the forefront of protecting and creating individual freedom and liberty. Better than getting our children to think like us, we teach them how to think about what they hear, see, and read. We teach them to ask questions that compare and contrast  using real-world issues as appropriate as possible. We teach them to be intellectually strong and to stand on their own two feet before running with the crowd immediately. We support them being writers of words, that they may ponder and practice deliberation. We support their minds and hearts by not having them be constant receptors of information, which does not allow them to rest from informational digestion. We call on them and make family time to turn the tables and make them conscious creators of information. This starts at dinner time with a family conversation. Start small. As they get older, we seek to have them try new stations of creativity. The arts and music are excellent for this. We develop routines that build on their sense of accomplishment, that they may have a historical experience of success that makes them feel inwardly strong. We also support them through our living. How do we participate in the local and national discourse? How do we respond when others devolve discussion? Do we depart from using our thinking side and move straight into a reactionary response? Our choices matter at all times. It is a new era of caring. I will say that one more time, it is a new era of caring. We can do better for ourselves and each other in raising the quality of our hearts and minds. It starts at home, in school and in our community.