The Soul of America: Essays on the 4th of July

The Soul of America: Essays on the 4th of July

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The major proposition of the Soul of America is that America consists in a set of beliefsa€”truthsa€”that bind us together. Ita€™s what makes us Americans. And without that belief, no Constitution, no laws, no whatever, except the point of a sword, can keep us together. Truth has moral implications. But truth in American culture has become negotiable. Herein lies the real cultural crisis of America. Gilligan's Book Is Required Reading For Everyone Who Cares About America's Future John Gilligan has given us a book for the ages. This work is a compilation of essays he authored over several decades that were published in his local newspaper the Peoria Journal Star. The essays are reader-friendly, packed with historical facts and insights, and written by someone who clearly has great love for his country. The essays progress in three sections from the founding of our country, to our current cultural and political problems, to what it means to be a patriot in our country today. Gilligan is concerned that the American people have lost sight of the beliefs and principles that animate our Declaration of Independence. He discusses civic virtue and the common good. He notes that America is the first people in history to form a nation from a diversity of racial, ethnic, and religious groups under the motto, a€œE Pluribus Unum, a€ unity in diversity, and with the underlying fundamental belief that a€œall men are created equal.a€ But can this nation so conceived endure? In the second section of his book, Gilligan maps out the philosophical, cultural, and political changes that challenge Americaa€™s survival: cultural relativism, spiritual cynicism, political apathy, self-indulgence, personal violence, racial and ethnic hatreds, and a general blurring of the distinction between right and wrong. He questions whether there is any longer a unity in the diversity and wonders whether we, as a country, have veered so far from our foundersa€™ lofty and noble precepts that we have passed the point of no return. He rejects this notion, however, and in the last section of his book Gilligan discusses what it means to be a€œpatriotica€ in todaya€™s society. He writes about the a€œAmerican project, a€ and argues that if Americaa€™s problems are to be solved, the heavy lifting must start in the local communities. Each citizen must take responsibility for his or her actions if America is to thrive and continue to fulfill the goals and dreams of her founders. This is a wonderful little book that encourages us to reflect on the essence of America, the a€œgreat experimenta€ all of us are blessed to be a part of, and what we might do to keep America great. It is required reading for everyone who cares about the soul of America.Among the 80 or so essays, I began a tradition in 1990 of writing an oped for the Fourth of July. As usual, I tried to include current ... The Soul of America consists of essays that speak to what it means to be an American. Thebookis composedanbsp;...

Title:The Soul of America: Essays on the 4th of July
Author:John Gilligan
Publisher:Xlibris Corporation - 2009-03-12


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