American Values


On the 240th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence being adopted by the Continental Congress, the values instilled in the first official American document need to be readdressed more than ever. It’s 2016, and the United States of America has adapted a new form of tyranny. Our oppressors are no longer royal figures sitting on a throne, but our very own carrying sentiments of hate and skewed political views.

When the Declaration was signed, times were different and values were not the same as they are now. However, the words remain pure and simple…."All men are created equal.” There it is. This one phrase says it all. There were no specifications to this statement. It never said white men and women following a sect of Christianity are entitled to these unalienable rights. ALL MEN. Then why, as Americans, have we forgotten our first ideal identifying our core values? We have been classified as a melting pot country, but in light of recent events, we can no longer classify ourselves as such. Differences in culture and religion should be celebrated and respected, but a large portion of our population use these differences to promote hatred.

If we continue to feed into this hate, we will be igniting the arsenal that will destroy the country. Our recent history proves that a Muslim man who commits a crime will, without even an investigation, be considered a terrorist. A white man who commits a similar crime will, off the bat, be considered mentally ill. The truth is anyone who commits a crime where a group of innocent people are unjustly harmed are mentally ill. Radicalization is a sign of mental instability, and people who allow for it to plague their minds have issues beyond the comprehension of a normal individual. So, when radicalized individuals commit these grave crimes, they are not the representation of the Islamic religion. They are categorized under all mentally ill terrorists. Terrorism is always carried out by godless agents. By using these religion and ethnic classifications for these groups of men and women, we are spreading this abhorrence.

As the election inches closer, we must not forget our founding patriotic ideals. Our nation was not created to harbor notions of racism, sexism, and phobias of certain religions. Albeit, times were different and these aforementioned threatening acts of hate may have been more prevalent, but they were not factors implanted in the Declaration. Moving forward, let’s as a whole dispel anything hindering our American ideals. Because “all men are created equal”, and that’s what it means to be an American.

Happy 4th!

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