America can overcome obstacles facing nation

Published 12:00 am Sunday, February 28, 2010

The first political book I ever read was Robert Kennedy’s campaign manifesto titled “To Seek a Newer World.”

I found myself consumed in this man’s idealistic vision of not only a nation, but a world, and his fiery optimism in a place that was going through one of its’ darkest times. He got his inspiration for the title of his book from Lord Alfred Tennyson’s masterpiece “Ulysses,” a poem about a man who selflessly fought for the common good.

During Kennedy’s time this nation faced a constant nuclear threat from the Soviet Union, a costly and seemingly never ending war in Vietnam, a people’s struggle for civil rights, and a country in search of its identity.

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He said that, “Each nation has different obstacles and different goals, shaped by the vagaries of history and of experience. Yet as I talk to young people around the world I am impressed not by the diversity but by the closeness of their goals, their desires and their concerns and their hope for the future.”

American’s are forced now to overcome obstacles as vigorous and challenging as in the 1960s.

We are faced with a fragile economy and high unemployment, two wars thousands of miles away costing us in lives and in debt, over 37 million people living in poverty and over 10 million American’s who struggle with “food insecurity” or hunger.

These are vulnerable times for this great nation.

He believed in not only a peaceful America, but a compassionate one.

End the wars in the Middle East. Our troops have fought enough; they have sacrificed enough, end the bloodshed and bring them home. Stop stretching our forces around the world; focus our military strength on protecting America and not our oil interest.

Don’t allow banks ever to be “too big to fail.” Place regulations on the banking industry; build our economy on a sure foundation and responsible monetary policy and not on risks that threaten our entire financial security and cost millions of jobs when the bubble bursts.

Fix a health care system that refuses the sick and the less affluent and give a chance for treatment to all Americans.

Show the rich that they have a responsibility to the people who made them rich and fix our taxing system.

Teach people a valuable career skill instead of giving away money to the unmotivated takers of our society.

Show not only American’s but the world as Bill Clinton said “there is nothing wrong with America that cannot be solved with what is right with America.”

We face a daunting task in this country, a challenge that would seem insurmountable to any other people, but not to us.

Until the politicians realize that they weren’t voted to their position by their party leader but by the American people, this world will be delayed … but it will come.

“Come, my friends, ‘Tis not too late to seek a newer world. Push off, and sitting well in order, smite the sounding furrows; for my purpose holds to sail beyond the sunset.”— Lord Alfred Tennyson

Tony Burge, Jr