Happy 4th Do we still have Heroes?
I ponder the question do we still have heroes? I look at what is happening in America today and I do not think we do, and the ones who in one moment we call hero, the next moment we easily ignore when they need help. We have become a country of haves and have nothings. We judge on credit scores and paycheck figures and not on deeds. We also judge on how much someone is willing to do for us and not even realize the stress others are under to just survive. We do not assume anyone can break so we pile on pressure on people we think can afford to lose a little, not realizing in the profess we cost some people everything.
I remember as a child writing essays about heroes. The assignment varied. Write about a living hero. Write about a hero from the past. Write about someone close to you who is your hero. I wonder if children do that today, and if they have valid true heroes in their lives. I look at our culture and it is as if we have created a mythology of anti heroes. I ponder how that happened. Yes I know there are all the block buster movies with cartoon heroes. But can anyone say they related to those characters? Are they in any way real. Do we have stories of people who seem like us who are doing the right thing? Would many people even know what right from wrong is anymore? Hint- it has nothing to do with religion or church attendance.
It is the fourth of July and the birthday for America. On July 4th 1776 after a month of deliberation and reviews, the 13 colonies of the United States officially adopted the Declaration of Independence written by Thomas Jefferson. It is this document we celebrate today. The document which says:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.
For me as a kid Jefferson was a hero for writing these words. He also wrote most of the Bill of Rights. He was especially proud of his religious freedom clauses.
Today I want to ask artists to think who are your heroes? Have you made art showing who they are or what they did that inspired you? Do you think our culture needs a shift to having better heroes? Do you think that maybe your art might influence what stories we tell and what heroes we exemplify?
Can we shift the paradigm away from the anti hero or the hero who wins the lottery, to people who really do things to save lives and make a difference?
You can create an imaginary character that is still relatable and does things every day people do and is a hero.
Can we recognize instilling Hate as a bad thing?
Can we wake up that the words Jefferson wrote in 1776 still can and should ring clear? We are all equal and we all have rights, and the true heroes are the people who respect that.
Happy Birthday “Declaration of Independence.”
This song has been bouncing around in my head all day too: