In the days following the horrific attack by Muslim terrorists on 9/11, America was shaken to its knees. Thousands were dead, billions of dollars of damage done to property and, more importantly, the psyche of the American public had been bruised badly. We wondered how this could happen on American soil; how less than two dozen men using fake identification could've so badly hurt the world's mightiest power. We lived in fear of when the next attack would occur.
As days turned to weeks, and weeks to months, the resilience and determination of the American people shone through the cloud of fear and sadness. Fear turned to anger and moral outrage at the atrocities waged against the American people. We went into Afghanistan and crippled the Taliban, which had aided and harbored the terrorists that had attacked us. Later we would turn our sites on Saddam Hussein, a brutal dictator who slaughtered tens of thousands of his own people, developed programs for weapons of mass destruction, and repeatedly defied U.N. Security Council resolutions and the terms of his surrender agreement that allowed him to retain power.
Ten years later, we must ask ourselves ... are we safer? Despite harsh criticism from his political enemies (along with a heavy dose of selective memory and Monday morning quarterbacking), George W. Bush prevented another attack on the American homeland for the next eight years. His methods, especially the provisions of the PATRIOT Act, were constantly questioned and vilified as the resurrection of Nazi Sturmabteilung (stormtroopers), the paramilitary "brown shirts" of Hitler's Germany that instilled fear and terror in the citizenry. To be sure, many provisions were rightly questioned and, if implemented, demanded constant scrutiny to prevent abuse. Yet any attempts to protect us were the cause of wailing from an army of leftist Cassandras warning of impending doom.
The results of these actions were not so much the creation of an American Third Reich, but of a self-imposed, politically correct mass insanity of the American people, or at least their leadership. Despite the fact that, on 9/11 and in subsequent attempts, the perpetrators of terrorist attacks were young Muslim men, many named Muhammad, who came here from terrorist-supporting countries, it is considered uncouth to acknowledge those facts. It is considered racism or religious bigotry to vocalize the universally understood fact that it was not Jewish grandmothers, Swiss bankers, California surfers, middle class American businessmen, or moms with kids in tow that slaughtered our fellow Americans.
Instead, we engage in a ridiculous form of kabuki theater, mandating shoe removal to go through airport security, carrying no more than three ounces of liquid, and that nail clippers be confiscated from passengers (including an air marshal who was also carrying a loaded pistol, which he got to keep...apparently there was no fear of the air marshal shooting anyone, just that he might get bored and perform manicures without a license). We have the TSA perform physical searches so invasive that you can cancel your colonoscopy and mammogram and just take a flight to Des Moines instead. The TSA has also begun doing random searches on subways and bus terminals. In other words, we've given up tremendous freedom in exchange for the empty promise of safety.
As devastating as the attacks of 9/11 were, I never once feared America would fall to a bunch of Muslim extremists who. These are the enemies we could see, that we knew were trying to destroy us and that we could then prepare for and defend against. Yet, as Cicero warned, "An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself ... A murderer is less to fear."
Today, the possibility of the collapse of the great American experiment lies not with Muslim terrorists, or even a resurgent Russia or the growing specter of a Communist Chinese superpower. No, if America falls it will not be by foreign hand, but by suicide. It will be because, through ignorance, jealousy, avarice or a lust for power, we let slip through our fingers the delicate threads of liberty. It will be because we wanted security more than freedom, and in the end were left with neither.
There is no hyperbole intended when I say that the greatest menace to the individual sovereignty enshrined in our Declaration of Independence and Constitution comes not from foreign invaders, but from those subverting our political system for their own gain.
We have a president and a major political party that have made it their mission to destroy the Constitution when it interferes with their agenda. President Obama refuses to enforce our immigration laws, and recently announced that only illegal aliens that engage in felonies will be prosecuted. He has signed a health care reform bill that removes the last vestiges of federalism and eliminates any remaining constraint on the federal government in its effort to control the lives of its citizens. President Obama and his party, after lambasting President George W. Bush for accumulating $4 trillion in debt in eight years, have accumulated nearly $5 trillion in less than three years. The burden of this crushing debt will fall largely on future generations, making them economic slaves before they even leave the womb.
When an organic uprising of millions of ordinary American citizens occurred, citizens previously uninvolved in political activism but now frightened at the rapidity with which we were propelling ourselves to become a socialist welfare state, Obama called them the "enemy." His speeches are replete with calls for his supporters to battle those who demand lower spending, lower taxes and limited, constitutional government. He's told his supporters to "get in [our] faces," and to engage in "hand to hand combat." Last weekend, AFL-CIO labor union president James Hoffa told a huge crowd of union workers to fight the TEA Party, telling them to "take the son of a b**ches out." Obama spoke shortly after that to the same assembled crowd, and not only did not rebuke such inflammatory language, he actually said how proud he was to be associated with the union leaders and members. His Vice President, Joe Biden, at a separate event, referred to Republicans and TEA Partiers as "barbarians" that must be "kept from the gate." This is nothing less than an incitement to violence, a proclivity which we've already seen in union thugs.
Ten years after the 9/11 attack, there is still a danger of America collapsing. However, it will not come from Muslim terrorists (though they will surely attempt to hurt us), but from a government kleptocracy intent on permanently subjecting its citizens to economic slavery, and making enemies of those that fight to restore individual freedom and constitutional government. May we all fight valiantly protect the rights of our neighbors as much as for ourselves. In doing so, we will purge the enemy from within and restore America's vision of liberty.
Louis DeBroux is a Taylorsville resident, married, with eight children. He is chairman of the Bartow County Republican Party. He owns Gatekeeper data backup and recovery. He can be emailed at email@example.com.