Is the United States about to limp off the stage of history? The answer is yes and no.
Doom and gloom seem to be the order of the day. According to the latest Rasmussen poll (for the week ending December 30, 2021), less than 30% of likely voters believe the country is headed in the right direction. In an Axios poll conducted around the same time, more than half of American adults said they were afraid of the year ahead.
Certainly, there is cause for concern: chaos at the border, inflation at the highest for nearly 40 years, 12 large cities with a record number of homicides last year, schoolchildren indoctrinated by anti-Americanism, serious efforts underway to nationalize the elections and abolish representative government.
Many Americans think we won’t last another three years. History proves them wrong. America is a success story always on the verge of failure. Yet we survive – sometimes inexplicably – and against all odds.
Since July 4, 1776, America has been a lost cause.
After the signing of the Declaration of Independence, we suffered a series of humiliating defeats until George Washington’s Christmas Day attack on Trenton. That year, the Continental Army marched to its ragged winter camp, leaving bloody footprints in the snow.
That we survived four years of civil war, with 620,000 dead, is another miracle. In the North, a large part of the population did not want to fight, forcing the Union to institute conscription for the first time in our history. The South had better generals and won most important battles up to Gettysburg. Yet we made a nation out of it.
World War II should have shattered us: Pearl Harbor, Bataan’s death march, most of Europe and Asia conquered by the time we entered the war. Until 1942, our armed forces lacked weapons and ammunition. In 1940, recruits trained with broomsticks because there weren’t enough guns for everyone.
If the Battle of Midway, the D-Day landings, or the Battle of the Bulge had gone any differently (or, if Germany or Japan had developed the atomic bomb first), we might be eating sushi every day of week and washing them will lager beer.
The Great Depression, Vietnam, Carter’s discomfort, 9/11 – we are still on life support. But we always manage to get by. After former President Jimmy Carter came Ronald Reagan, and it was morning in America.
Our enemies have consistently underestimated us, starting with the British during the Revolution, who believed they were facing a motley army of peasants and that the rebellion would be over by Christmas of the year it began.
The Kaiser couldn’t see how America would change the equation in 1917.
In 1941, Hitler believed that American men were all playboys whose main interests were dancing and drinking – a combination of Fred Astaire and WC Fields. He probably had doubts about it, as he awaited the end in the smoldering ruins of Berlin four years later.
We starved to death in Valley Forge. The evacuation of Saigon (recently reconstituted in Kabul) was humiliating. After September 11, the nation was in shock but determined. Through it all, we are still the last man standing. Confronting America is like entering Russia in the middle of winter.
I do not need to list the problems we are facing today. But I am convinced that we will last until God finds a better instrument for his purpose.
The spirit of 76 still burns in the hearts of many of us – the ideal of a republic guided by a Constitution meant to protect free men and restrict only government, entrepreneurship and a market economy, as well as the faith of our fathers.
With this foundation and trust in the Almighty, better days are coming.
The administration’s approval rating will hit new lows this year. Press secretary Jen Psaki will continue to do stand-up comedy. In the Democratic Party, the war between hackers and the hard-core will intensify. The exodus of blue towards the red states will accelerate, and the democratic cities (strongholds of the party’s power) will remain under suicidal surveillance.
Even the mainstream media, the big bucks in technology, and voter fraud will not be enough to save this president and his party.
In the next election, bet on red. And always bet on America.
• Don Feder is a former writer and columnist for the Boston Herald.