Out of one nation, many tribes

Our founders sought, at great risk, to create a place to be free to work, worship and prosper according to their choosing and efforts. As a conglomeration of peoples they founded a nation with common goals and constructed a government and way of life that championed their mutual beliefs. Their form of government has worked for more than 200 years. We all became Americans and the leaders of the free world.

In the past 50 years, we have seen a paradigm shift. No longer are we “one nation,” a melting pot, but tribes. A nation of tribes of not just men, women and families but also of black, white, gay, lesbian, transgender, disabled, disadvantaged, rich, middle class, poor — the list has become endless. Each tribe demands from the others recognition, rights, powers and often economic support.

We are no longer Americans. We have become hyphenated Americans. There is a subtle but profound difference.

We now have a government that, instead of protecting all equally, establishes, promotes and protects certain tribes. To win elections we have politicians championing one tribe at the expense of others to garner votes.
So where will we go as a nation of tribes? I submit that we will follow the same course as any other nation of tribes — fighting. Show me a prosperous and free nation where tribes exist. There never has been, and there will never be one.

We are losing the soul of America. We will live our lives fighting for recognition from neighboring tribes. We must return to the values that made us one America.

Richard L. Thayer, Omaha

The Public Pulse, February 10 - Omaha.com