Wednesday, March 3, 2021

Education, not Politics, will Save America

Present-day partisans, pundits, and citizens
 alike too often value politics above education.
For better or for worse—and it seems increasingly for the worse—politics is as popular as it has ever been in America.

How do we know this?

Because voter turnout for the 2020 Presidential Election (over 60% of eligible voters cast a vote) was higher than it has been in over 100 years. That is an amazingly high percentage when compared to other elections throughout the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. In fact, you have to go all the way back to the 1908 election between William Howard Taft and William Jennings Bryant to find a comparatively high percentage of eligible voters who cast a ballot in a U.S. Presidential Election.

While the COVID-19 Pandemic undoubtedly played a prominent role in these soaring voter turnout numbers, it was not the only variable at play. The rise of social media and its concomitant culture of puerile political polarization and unremitting divisiveness also factored into this increase. 

One of the most assumptive misnomers among both professional partisans and pundits, as well as social media laity and the citizenry-at-large, is that the answer to our deepest and most pressing problems in the United States and beyond lies in politics. In the eyes of many, everything would be hunky-dory if only we could keep a particular person or party in power in perpetuity. 

Despite any and all partisan persuasions or insinuations, this simply is not true.  

As important as politics is, anyone with any common sense about reality recognizes that there remain other, more basic, fundamental, and even primal elements of life and society that transcend the importance of politics. 

What are these elements? 

Answer: One's FAMILY ENVIRONMENT in conjunction with the formal and informal EDUCATION one receives and seeks out.  

Signers of the American
Declaration of Independence
One of the main reasons family environment and education is even more important than politics is because politics itself is ultimately an outgrowth of the familial environments, education, and experiences of individual citizens and politicians. This phenomenon explains why America's august Founding Fathers and Mothers valued freedom, equality, and opportunity so much. And why did they value these principles and virtues so much? Because they were taught in their homes and schools that said virtues and principles were practically essential and politically indispensable. As a result, they grew up into men and women of great character and capacity who were willing to pledge their "lives, fortunes, and sacred honors" on the altar of promoting and perpetuating those same values.

The secret to solving America's deepest problems at home and abroad is not to ensure that a certain political party attains and maintains power. The secret lies in transforming American home life and education in ways that refocuses American Students' attention on the enduring, uniting, non-partisan virtues and values enshrined in her founding documents (i.e. The Declaration of Independence and Constitution).

And what exactly are those values? 

The secret to our success both individually and collectively
was set in stone over two centuries ago in Philadelphia, PA.
Answer

Life, Liberty, Equality, Self-Reliance, The Pursuit of Happiness, The Rule of Law, Equal Justice Under the Law, and Divided Government that Limits and Shares power.

Unlike politicians, who often complicate things and manipulate people for petty partisan purposes, Freedom Focused likes to keep things basic, simple, honest, straightforward, and consistent.

We accomplish this aim by remaining laser focused on these fundamental, timeless, and true principles equally applicable to both self-government AND self-governance. As such, everything we model, teach, or promote is aimed at safeguarding and perpetuating Life, Liberty, Equality, Self-RelianceThe Pursuit of Happiness, The Rule of Law, Equal Justice Under the Law, and Divided Government that Limits and Shares power.

At Freedom Focused, we eschew the political fractures and cultural division so common in our contemporary world. And we do so in an effort to create greater unity built upon certain fixed, timeless, and true principles and practices that have proven themselves endlessly efficacious by the unimpeachable test tubes of time. 

We therefore hold that the greatest way to form a more perfect union (e pluribus unum) is to focus more on education than we do on politics. Not because politics doesn't matter; it does! But because we recognize the great truth that politics will largely take care of itself as long as education is focused on those preeminent issues emblazoned in our nation's vital founding documents.

Part of a quality education is to learn about and participate in the political process. All responsible citizens should take at least enough interest in politics to become informed voters. I have personally always been interested in politics. In fact, for much of my life, I thought I might eventually run for office myself, up-to-and-including the office of President of the United States. Over time, I learned I was poorly suited for a political career. More importantly, I discovered that in the long run I could influence more people and make a greater positive impact on the world as an EDUCATOR than I ever could as a POLITICIAN.

That is why I chose to become an educator.

In a forthcoming blog article, I will spotlight and summarize an upcoming academic paper (pending publication in the Journal of Leadership & Management) that offers a common-sense, non-partisan, and balanced educational framework for the twenty-first century in which persons of all political parties and ideological backgrounds can potentially find common ground. 

To some, it may seem like naïve, "pie-in-the-sky" optimism to believe that anything under the sun could possibly bridge the current cultural chasms and partisan political polarization that so divides the not-so-United States of America.

For better or for worse, I am a simple person who is just provincial and optimistic enough to believe that such a solution not only exists, but, when widely applied, will eventually accomplish such an "Impossible Dream" — in much the same way that those miraculous COVID-19 vaccines are currently ridding the world of our cruel contemporary plague.

What are YOU waiting for?
If you agree with and like this article, share it!
Imagine an American social media environment where people were more passionate about posting principled pedagogical placards than they were about perpetually proliferating partisan political paraphernalia!

Please pardon the publicly punishing, yet personally pleasing perpetuation of purple prose purposely placed in the previous and present pontifications. Sometimes I just can't resist the urge to ostentatiously opine and otherwise operate alliteratively.  

It's kinda hard to imagine such a stark and welcomed cultural reversal, isn't it? Yet the simple truth is that YOU can take a step in the right direction and make a positive difference right this minute by simply sharing this article on your own social media platforms. 

For better or for worse, all of us at Freedom Focused are on board this SHIP of FREEDOM bound for A More Perfect Union... or bust! We invite YOU to join us by signing up for our blog and telling your friends, family, and colleagues about our movement by encouraging them to do the same.  

Steve Jobs and Apple Computers Changed the World.
Educators at Freedom Focused Have a Similar Aim
Maybe we will fail. Or maybe we will succeed. Time will tell. But succeed or fail, my colleagues and I choose to live and die fully engaged in making the attempt. Maybe we're crazy to even try. But make no mistake: try we will! After all, "The people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are [usually] the ones who do." So said one of those relatively few fellows who, along with his countless committed colleagues, actually did change the world in an epically transformative and positive way.  

"The People who are crazy enough to think they can 

change the world are [usually] the ones who do."

Steve Jobs

Co-Founder of Apple Computers    

.........................  

Tune in NEXT Wednesday to learn the SAL Definition of Success.

And if you liked this blog post, please share it with your family, friends, colleagues, and students—and encourage them to sign up to receive future articles for FREE every Wednesday.

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Click HERE to learn more about Freedom Focused

Click HERE to learn more about Dr. Jordan R. Jensen

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