What is Your American Dream?

Patriot Voices wants to know: What is your American Dream? What are you doing to make that happen? Tell us below, and stay tuned in the coming weeks as we share more about the American Dream.

Chad Collie

My American Dream can be summed up in just a few words, but further elaborated  in oceans of thought. I have had many dreams of my own as an American, but as the years have went by and as I have evolved in wisdom by learning from the Bible, I have learned humility and that this life and earth does not revolve around me. As I have begun to think of others more than myself, I have begun to realize that my dream takes a back seat to the dreams of my grandfather that lives and my grandmother that has passed on. And if I were to sum up their dream, it would be this…………”TO ABOLISH THE WORD ‘RETARD’ FROM THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE, AND EVERY DISCRIMINATORY AND PROFANE CONNOTATION THAT GOES WITH IT”. You see, as a child, I grew up with an uncle that my grandparents raised as their son, he was born a normal, typical child, but due to severe allergies and a brief period of a lack of oxygen to his brain, he became what we now refer to as ‘special needs’. When we lost Randy last year suddenly in his sleep, it became almost immediately apparent to us that we had lost one of the most precious souls on the planet. We had known this to a degree before Randy’s passing, but as the American proverb states ‘absence makes the heart grow fonder’.  As I was growing up, ‘retard’ was one of those words that you just DID NOT say in our family. I appreciate that more progressively  as the years have went by. It is those that so ignorantly and arrogantly proclaim to use this word ‘retard’ toward those that are ‘special’  that are truly those who are ‘slow in learning’.  After my uncle’s passing and growing in my appreciation of the impact he had on my life, I have learned that it is those that are like him that are much wiser and more innocent than the rest we call ‘normal’. Randy had many characteristics like those with Down’s Syndrome (a loving and forgiving heart, an almost never ending smile and the ability to be a  friend  to anyone worthy of their love, and many times those not so worthy.) It infuriated me last year to find out from a speech that Rick Santorum gave that around 90% of those diagnosed with Down’s Syndrome in the womb are aborted . My anger is not so much an anger toward those who abort them, but anger toward a society that no longer realizes how precious these wonderful people are in society. If we, as a people, do not cherish and honor those who are weaker, we are part of a greater  problem that will in the end defeat us as a society……….if we are so hardhearted and calloused that we cannot appreciate the wisdom, value and example these precious souls bring to our land, then we are fools without hope. In conversations with my grandfather after my uncle’s passing, he told me of the time when he was  in a department store and an imbecile as they were passing says ‘Hey George!’ laughing, my grandfather and Randy (as a child) walks by again and the guy says ‘Hey George, what tree did you fall out of?’ in ignorant mockery because Randy looked a little different and proclaiming he was like a monkey that fell out of a tree, so my granddad confronted  the guy as he was making fun of my uncle, and let’s just say he gave this guy the verbal smackdown of his life and that conversation changed that young man for life.  At times I ask myself how mankind can be so hateful, but I know myself at times in life have made stupid choices without considering the impact on others, so again my American Dream is simple…….to carry out what would make my grandparents and Randy happy and fulfil their dreams……TO ABOLISH THE WORD ‘RETARD’ FROM THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE, AND EVERY DISCRIMINATORY AND PROFANE CONNOTATION THAT GOES WITH IT AND TO BRING POSITIVE AWARENESS AND EQUAL RESPECT TO THOSE WE CALL ‘SPECIAL NEEDS’. It’s actually US that have the special need to change OUR hearts. As for my own personal dreams, they remain, but they remain 2nd.  I know that this dream is just a dream and that every person will not change, but please consider your words wisely and open your heart to honor those that may appear weaker, but have stronger and more innocent hearts and souls. We were happy and blessed recently to see a father DANCING with his young daughter with Down’s Syndrome in a Wendy’s restaurant……that’s my realistic American Dream…….that more kids like that little girl can dance with their parent in a Wendy’s with a beautiful smile on their face and be cherished as precious, because they are.

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Welfare Reform and Sustainable Agriculture

My dream is to fix the issues of unemployment, welfare, sustainability, and the health of the nation because they are all intertwined.  We can fix them all by addressing them all as one big issue.  I began contemplating the relationship between these issues after reading about Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s WPA program and learning about Israel’s current unemployment program.

As efforts to reduce unemployment rates continue along side discussions about sustainability, health and obesity, perhaps it is time that the US government takes a page out of their own history book or looks to the East for some guidance. Perhaps its time that we educate our unemployed in the most basic of human functions, feeding themselves and others in a healthy and sustainable way.

It is time to pass legislation requiring welfare and unemployment recepients to participate in sustainable agriculture in exchange for this assistance.  It is time that we teach them how to sustain themselves without assistance.

GLOBAL SOLUTIONS

In an effort to educate the unemployed through hands on experience at historical sites, boost tourism to the country, receive some value for the funds spent on unemployment and provide a helping hand to archaeologists, the Israeli government puts their unemployed to work. In return for the receipt of unemployment assistance, Israeli citizens receiving this assistance must aid the excavation efforts at archaeological sites. Reminiscent of FDR’s strategy to improve the national park system in the United States, is it not?

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Israel Central Bureau of Statics, unemployment rates in January 2013 compared as follows.

- Australia – 5.4% 
- Canada - 6% 
- Israel - 6.5% 
- United Kingdom – 7.8% 
- United States – 7.9% 
- Eurozone – 11.9%

Israel’s unemployment rate has been among the lowest in the world for some time. Although they are only 1.4% better than the United States in this category at present, 1.4% of the US represents 4.4 million jobs, the approximate population of the entire Bay Area of California.

Now, I am not proposing that a policy change is going to decrease unemployment in the US by 1.4%. I am, however, proposing that we can give our unemployed and welfare recipients experience in a life skill that will help them get jobs, eat healthier, live healthier and lead more sustainable lives.

To give them this experience, I am proposing that those receiving unemployment or welfare support be required to dedicate a portion of their week to food production in sustainable agriculture. By working on farms, urban or rural, or in community gardens they will learn how to produce healthy and sustainable food for themselves and their communities while enabling us to cut down our dependence on commercial chemicals in food production.

It would be a huge step forward in American nutrition to improve the quality and quantity of local food. We can do this without increasing our federal or state budgets too! We only need to speak out and let legislators know that we want value out of the money that is spent on welfare and unemployment.

To clarify, no one will be forced to request unemployment or welfare, thus no one will be forced to work. The requirement is simple, those who wish to receive unemployment assistance or welfare must work for it by adding value to society.

Why should they work in sustainable agriculture? The answer to that question requires a brief history lesson and notes from the EPA's website that less than 1% of the US farms for a living today while the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that 40% of farmers are 55 years old or older.

I'll begin with a quick history lesson in food production.  Prosperity in the ancient world relied heavily on food. The civilizations that were able to master food production thrived the most. By minimizing the number of people producing food and maximizing the amount of food produced, other members of society had time to build, write, teach and add value to their society because they did not have to spend time looking for, or producing, food.

The United States has become the master of efficient food production. As I stated previously, according to the EPA’s website less than 1% of the nation farms for a living today. Unfortunately that efficiency has come at a cost to the health of humans and the planet, something that is new to the modern world.

The advancements in machinery and chemicals that minimize the manpower needed to produce food while maximizing the amount of food produced and the shelf life of food enables 1% of the US population to feed us all. Unfortunately, those chemicals, machines and genetic modification processes that we are using are slowly killing people, and the planet.

We are putting chemicals into our bodies that cause cancer, diabetes and heart disease. We are washing other chemicals into the rivers and streams that are killing and deforming our fish supplies. We are pumping carbon dioxide into the atmosphere at a rate so fast that the forests of the planet cannot recycle it and, in turn, have burned a hole in the ozone layer. We are depleting our natural resources at a rate so fast that our children and grandchildren will have to deal with the consequences of our actions. We do all of this to enable 1% of the population to feed us all.

But, that 1% feeds us all so that the rest of us are free to add value to society in other ways.

Wait a minute, let’s back up and talk again about unemployment. In the United States 7.9% of the population has nothing to do and is looking for employment....

We are destroying our health and our planet to give people free time that they do not want!?!?

No one wants to be unhealthy or unsustainable. People do however want, and often times need, to eat cheap. This necessity is especially true for those on welfare and unemployment. Unfortunately cheap food typically equates to unhealthy, unsustainable food in today’s society. It is well documented that low-income households tend to have higher rates of obesity and shorter life expectancies. This is a problem that can and needs to be fixed.

Planting and growing produce is cheap and therapeutic. This is the reason behind the prevalence of gardens in hospitals, psychiatric wards and jails.

On top of that, gardening and food production is as basic and necessary a function to human life as breathing but few people participate in the act. As I stated before, only 1% of the US farms for a living.

Finally, in cities, where the unemployed are most densely concentrated, access to fresh produce and healthy food is most alarming.

URBAN FARMING IS THE ANSWER!

A 2012 study on urban farming by the Urban Design Lab at Columbia University discovered approximately 5000 acres of land suitable for farming in the 5 boroughs of New York City. To put this into perspective, Central Park is only 843 acres.

The land is available and the urban garden organizations, farming organizations and community gardening organizations exist. The issue is that not enough people are willing to commit their time to producing local, sustainable produce.

Take control of your diet. Plant your own food and encourage others to do the same. Get involved with welfare and unemployment reform.

At no additional cost to tax payers and no additional burden on the federal or state budgets, we can give our unemployed jobs, provide them with an education in a practical, honest and necessary job function. We can provide a, necessary, helping hand to organic farmers and urban gardening projects around the country. We can increase the sustainability of the country and improve the health of the citizens of the United States of America.

That, my friend, is the duty of a government so get involved......

 

http://www.change.org/petitions/reform-welfare-and-unemployment-in-america

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Return to what made America...America!

To answer the most famous question from Gladiator, "I am NOT entertained!"

I have watched this YHWH-ordained and Blessed Nation crumble from the inside out since 1988 and keep accelerating with today's Fuhrer and his Duma.

Like the great "empires" that have come before (esp. Roman), we are decaying from the inside-out.  I agree with Joel Dunn's post below.  The eternal focus is gone.  Christians have been "asleep in the light" (Keith Green) and have removed themselves from the public square.

One way to turn this around is to take ALL public officials to task.  Just because someone is a Republican doesn't mean s/he should not be unelected if they do not act/perform as they s/he promised.  CONSERVATISM needs to be supported over party affiliation.  Unfortunately, the "conservative/independent" movement is marginalized by...conservatives AND independents each time we compromise "for the sake of the party" or support a RINO/CINO (Republican In Name Only/Conservative In Name Only).

The Big Tent mentality only works for viewing citizens within the appropriate Christian worldview:  saved sinners and unsaved sinners.  Everything else is based upon which group you are in.  After that, it is all about the greater good and furthering Conservative, Christian, Capitalist ideals.

For example:  gay marriage.  I'm against it.  Homosexuality is a life/behavioral choice.  It is not like skin color, ethnicity, birth origin, disability, etc.  As such, certain consequences come with such choices.  If I am a felon, there are LEGAL consequences, in the form of restrictions of rights and other legal issues.  Similarly, gay marriage has ALWAYS had the legal consequence of, well, NOT being a legal marriage.  I can have a homosexual person as a friend.  I can show him Christ-like love and concern.  However, I will not condone his/her lifestyle nor will I support any legal or social "norming" of said behavior.  Those who do and claim to be a conservative or Christian is going along to get along and should be someone who belongs to neither group.

We must take a stand against the decay of Liberalism, Totalitarianism, Dhimmi, Communism, Fascism, Socialism, etc.  When I took the officer's oath in the Air Force, I "[swore]...so help ME GOD" that I would "support and defend the Constitution of the United States against ALL enemies, foreign AND DOMESTIC".  [The Constitution IS the USA.]  As a matter of fact, all federal officials (POTUS, Veep, SCOTUS, Congress) take an oath of office that includes all of the same concepts as this oath...to INCLUDE the defense against domestic enemies!  Ultimately, that is the ONLY promise that matters.

It's time to rise up and take our Country back!  And, as stated in AmirNader Elahi's post, Gov. Santorum is the one to lead US(A).

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My dream is to see Rick Santorum as the President

Hi,Patriot Voices:

My dream is to see Rick Santorum as the president. I think he is a real conservative and he has a good ideas on any issues. For example on hispanics inmigration or economy.

Thanks

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To add an eternal focus to public policy

As Maximus in Gladiator puts it: "What we do in life, echoes in eternity."

Public Policy, in essence, is the tangible representation of a nation’s collective worldview. Our nation, being founded for, among other things, religious freedom makes public policy in the U.S. somewhat unique due to the multiplicity of worldviews represented and structure with which we find ourselves.

While still recognizing the completely interdependent nature of public policy, I believe that we must strive to govern in a nature consistent with the constitution with an eternal focus in every potential area of federal public policy. And we must know its limits. 

Let us refuse to allow an "ends justify the means" mentality to permeate our policy thought process. Let remain stalwart in our commitment to the process because we, being feeble and deeply broken human beings, have no authority nor power to effect ends. That is a job for God Almighty. He is in the business of beginnings and ends. Our lives are but a vapor. 

 

What am I doing to make this dream happen? I study the Scriptures thoroughly and pray for understanding. I went to law school to learn how the law works and how it's roots inform everything we do. I've interned with members of Congress and assisted in drafting legislation on religious freedom issues. I'm honing my skills in any way possible. 

And as I graduate from law school this May I am looking for my niche to affect a return to a fully integrated American public policy position that honors human dignity and life, and is a bulwark for the family; the fundamental building block of civil society. 

 

 

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Family and Community

To be able to provide for my family and friends while helping my community. I want to have a happy family that I can provide for in the house that my father raised my sister and I in. I want to help my community grow and prosper like it used to. 

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Harmony with enemies

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Harmony with nature

I dream of harmony with nature...
seeing God in all life...
and all life in God

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Wake up every morning, watch out of the window, and see... the USA and the beautiful flag

My American dream will start about to immigrate to the United States...

Then wake up every morning and watch out of my window, and see... the USA and the beautiful flag :-)

I don't care if I'm poor when I come to the USA... Its better to be poor and live in the USA, than rich and live in Europe!

Then just hard work, create family, work for the right American values and what the flag stands for... God, family, freedom, democracy, etc...

Hopefully some day!

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To have the freedom I grew up with

My dream is to go back to a country that gives me the same freedoms I had as a child, the ones where I did not have to worry if I would be arrested tomorrow because I disagreed with the federal government, the one where I was allowed to have Christian beliefs and not be ridiculed for them, the one where we were not being taxed to death, the one where if you worked hard people looked up to and you did not constantly get rewarded for being a long term leech on society. 

To help make this dream come true, I pray daily for my country, we are organizing a grass roots group that is prepared to be political (not politically correct), community oriented and if necessary stand up to tyranny, and last I am a teacher.  

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