Editor’s Note: I am happy to welcome back Jim Donahue to our stable of monthly columnists. After taking a break from writing to deal with attacks on his personal credibility, Jim is back with his credibility and good name fully intact and we’re glad to have him. While Jim's stated opinions are strictly his own and do not necessarily represent those of Officer.com, its ownership or any of its employees, Jim's passion to support the law enforcement community and minimize officer risk is high and appreciated.
What Are The Promises of America?
1 We can practice any form of religion we desire – or none, at all.
2 We can keep weapons for self defense.
3 We cannot be forced to host soldiers in our homes in times of peace.
4 We are free from unreasonable searches or seizures.
5 We cannot be forced to testify against ourselves in court.
6 We will be given a speedy trial, when accused.
7 We can have a trial by jury.
8 Cruel and unusual punishments are out.
9 Rights not specifically mentioned in the Constitution are not surrendered.
10 If there is any doubt, rights are retained by the states and the people.
In case you don’t recognize the list, it’s known as the BILL OF RIGHTS. These are the primary subjects of the first ten amendments to our Constitution.
From my perspective, this list is pretty solid – just as it is. But, it seems not all Americans agree. What makes me arrive at this conclusion? The way many people behave. Unfortunately, some of those who are most puzzling are brother/sister cops.
What do their actions indicate they think the above list includes more, for example:
11 We are guaranteed that we will not be offended.
12 We are promised that all aspects of life are fair.
13 We are assured that everyone will succeed, having a high self-esteem.
14 We are ensured that we may have whatever we want at all times.
15 Right & wrong, good & bad are relative terms based on unique situations.
Now maybe, in some fantasy utopian place, these things may be real. Immediately; a day at Disney World comes to mind. How sweet; but it won’t last for long.
If one embraces the aforementioned concepts, one cannot help but toss-out any hope of using COMMON SENSE to guide one’s decisions or actions in this life. You see, embracing items 11 – 15 enriches me, but at the unfair and unreasonable expense of the others with whom I share this planet.
That’s the Theory. What’s It Mean To Me?
We live in an age where being Politically Correct has caused us to act and talk stupidly – to abandon lessons society learned long ago.
Our forefathers taught us that when people come to this country, they become Americans. Yes, they bring their heritage and customs with them from the old country. They put them in the “melting pot” known asAmericaand they make us ALL stronger. We are NOT a multi-cultural country. WE ARE ALL SIMPLY AMERICANS.
We are not: African-Americans, Irish-Americans, Italian-Americans or any other form of hyphenated AMERICANS. In an effort not to offend born a few years ago, we were told that slang terms to describe people of various heritages were unacceptable. What was common place in language fifty years ago is now verboten. We call that progress. Hmmmmm.
All for the sake of political correctness, our citizens came to accept a multi-cultural society because of the spread of hyphenated nationality: African-American. Sorry. We are trying to avoid offending a very small portion of a group of people by subverting our nationality by using this new term in place of the REAL definition: color. They are black. I am white. Others are yellow. Some are brown. Italian-American. French-American. German-American. There comes a point where citizens cannot be defined by skin color, skin shading, hair color, eye color, clothes they wear, etc. Yet we go out of our way to structure our language specifically not to offend ANYONE.