I don't know how far my voice will carry, nor do I know who will listen. But I sense the necessity of writing these words to you. To all of you, all of humanity, all of mankind, I speak. I am alive for this purpose, if no other.

I feel as if my words are whispers in a world filled with screams. I see my county's voice dwindling, its presence so faint that I wonder if it ever even existed. Technology surges forward and the world grows smaller and smaller. And as the distance between our collective lives collapses, so it seems does part of what once held the world together. Ideas commingle and the notion of solid, reliable things begins to slip like sand through our fingers. Uncertainty becomes our national anthem as respect is replaced with self-righteous indignation. Common sense is quickly becoming a delusion of the sane, while the entire world slips into the madness of catering to the lowest common denominator. Instead of protecting the well being and stability of our fellow man, we find ourselves catering to his every ideological whim and emotional compulsion.

The question of what it means to be an American is being swallowed up by an all consuming quest to avoid offending anyone's warped sense of psychological, emotional, or spiritual well-being. Instead of standing up for something, we settle for the pleasant ennui of watching the inevitable downward spiral of the world. Patriotism has been replaced with mutated surrogate belief systems, warped perspectives, and globalist notions of world citizenship. Can a man not also be a citizen of a nation? Can an American not also be a member of the world community? By what reasoning come we to the conclusion that we must sacrifice our sense of national unity in order to better ourselves and the world? It is not necessary and in fact without a sense of ourselves as a nation it is likely that we shall simply continue to stumble around in the world community.

We don't know who we are as a nation, we are drowning ourselves with all the dust and dark corner trinkets of the world. We scramble to try and find something of meaning when our nation's fate lies squarely and definitively in our own hands. We have forgotten that in our blind, groping struggle for meaning we have dropped our flag upon the ground. The very banner that proclaims "We are Americans" is no longer a gleaming source of pride in the hearts of many, but rather something from which ones eyes must be averted.

Our world is collapsing in on itself. Hope, happiness, love, joy, are becoming more and more precious commodities. And yet for things having such incredible value, we treat them as if they were commodities to be traded about at will. It seems also that mankind's redeeming qualities such as compassion, understanding, friendship, sympathy, and wisdom too are being dealt with as if they were as menial and worthless as hate, anger, jealousy, or greed.

We have lost hope, become discouraged, aimless, and listless in our lives and in our citizenship, likely in that order. Our freedom has become a burden too heavy to be bothered with keeping lifted high. We leave our nation's principles to rust away while we try to find common ground with unbalanced philosophies and flawed, agenda-driven ideals.

What is necessary to restore the state of our nation is an ideological revolution. A massive paradigm shift in how we perceive ourselves and the world around us. Right now we are a nation resting squarely upon its laurels, picking at our own skin. We have lost sight of what is necessary to change the world we live in for the better.

We have become so consumed by the concept of individual rights and privileges and freedoms that the greater picture has become cloudy and has been discarded. What allows us to maintain freedom and a healthy nation is genuine investment of energy and effort in order to preserve values and principles that every man, woman, and child can embrace.

Apathy must be replaced with heart, malaise with hope, and belligerent selfishness with a willingness to give. What can save our nation, our children, and our future, is a grass roots movement towards restoring the soul of our nation. We must redefine what it means to be an American by redefining ourselves as individuals. The spirit of man is begrudging and bitter, he must truly believe in a better future in order to accept the possibility of change.

Hope, joy, love, dedication, honor, loyalty, respect, compassion, friendship, understanding, all the qualities of man that so redeem him and give life value and meaning, have incredible power. These must be wielded by a great many in order to push the heart of our nation out of the shadow of self-indulgent despair.

We must each start by doing our part, by using all that we have as best we have. In doing so, we can reach out to our fellow man. And in reaching out, just one person at a time, we can all begin to shape a brighter tomorrow and lessen the despair and pain of today.

I don't know who you are, what you think, or how you feel, but if you read this I hope that you understand that making America a country worth being proud of, making the world a better place, and making mankind more humane requires only one person doing one thing. And that is you, trying your best to be a decent human being.

One person can make a difference. We tell this to children until they grow old enough to hear the growing uncertainty in the voices that tell them this. Or sometimes we don't bother telling children this at all, as we have already given up on the concept ourselves. Unless we believe and apply this principles in our lives, there is a dark and uncertain future ahead of both our nation and the whole of humanity.

It's time we started taking responsibility for our lives, our nation, and our fellow human beings. One life at a time.