By John Fitzpatrick
As the rhetoric on impeachment ramps up there are many questions, and also just as many opinions in regards to the facts in the case against the President, and what the desired outcome is. The one thing that appears to be missing from all that has occurred so far? The truth. We, as a nation, have endured three years of investigations, accusations, claims of irrefutable evidence that never materialized, and a constant bombardment of rhetoric and talking points from the legacy media that is unsurpassed in history. Something truly monumental is afoot. One might even say that what is transpiring is of “biblical proportions.” But this shift is not just about impeachment.
Unfortunately, the underlying implications of what is taking place are being camouflaged from the public by a constant bombardment of distraction and deflection. This is something the legacy media have become marvelously adept at. They have historically provided the American public with valid, relatively unbiased information that people could then consider and apply, using it to form the basis of their opinions, and the evolution of their ideologies. However, the transformation of legacy media from journalism to activism has occurred subtly, yet completely over the past several years. Many Americans who grew up hearing the news from people such as Walter Cronkite, David Brinkley, Charles Kuralt and others, believed that they were being given information that adhered to a standard of journalistic integrity. They trusted those people, and they had little reason not to. That has changed.
This point was recently driven home for me while I was visiting my father in my small hometown in northern Maine. He is 80 years old. He was an entrepreneur who ran his own business and he worked incredibly hard to provide for his family. He retired as a general manager from the Coca-Cola Company. He taught me work ethic, integrity, leadership, manhood, and how to treat people. He is also a “Kennedy Democrat”. We talked about how the ideals of today’s Democratic Party do not even remotely represent his ideals, but that he doesn’t really connect with ardent Trump Republicans either.
As we were talking, Adam Schiff came on the television. We were watching CNN. Schiff was giving his now infamous speech to the House Intelligence Committee on the whistleblower letter regarding the President’s phone call to the Ukraine. I had already read the transcript. As Schiff proceeded through his speech, I could not believe what I was hearing. My father commented about how inappropriate it was and how damaging it was to the President. I explained that what Schiff was saying is not what was actually said on the call. I explained that Schiff was flat out lying or talking about something that I must have missed.
It was difficult for my father to believe that an elected official would blatantly lie like that on national television. Five or ten years ago, I would have agreed with him. What struck me about this was that there are millions of Americans out there like my father who still have some faith in the assumption that our elected officials have the best interests of the people at heart, and that there is integrity in the legacy media. He uses the internet and has a smart phone, but he is not likely to download and read the call transcript. He is more likely to take the word of an elected Representative and a news anchor. And that should be the reality. My father is far from naïve. He is one of the wisest men I know. His gives people the benefit of the doubt as do most in his generation, until they give him a reason not to. But how could he know?
Adam Schiff is not stupid. He is far from it, which makes his actions all the more egregious. He knew exactly what he was doing by presenting things the way he did and then later, and only after being accused of lying, did he claim it was a parody. There was nothing humorous about it. He lied to the American people with the intent to deceive and to generate an emotional and visceral response from his “base”. A base that (much of which) he is miles apart from ideologically. The legacy media was all too willing to keep the propaganda machine churning and push it out there like it was baseball on the 4th of July. The talking points that the legacy media spew daily are well coordinated and consistent. The left and the legacy media are one, and are bent on destroying Donald Trump at all costs. What is happening is the genesis of a transformation in America that the left has been pushing for many years. It is insidious, it is divisive, and it is dangerous.
However, it is not the most dangerous enemy that we face as a nation. That enemy is complacency. The kind of complacency that makes us believe we can continue to feed the fires of hatred and division within our own country without dire consequences. It is the kind of complacency that takes for granted what it took for America to become the greatest nation on earth, and what is still required of brave men and women today to keep her intact. It is the kind of complacency that takes politicians and the legacy media at their word, and drinks up their lies like water in the desert. And, it is the kind of complacency that assumes that someone else will deal with these problems and that we as individuals can’t really do anything about it.
There is a huge fissure across this country between good people who want what they believe is best for our collective future. What is the motivation behind the division? How did we get to this point of divergence? What are we as individuals willing to do about it? Are we even willing to seek the truth?
We, as a nation, are bigger than our politicians. We are not defined by the chaos and drama that is Washington today, yet it drives the divide. We have allowed social media and legacy media to become our informer. The truth is readily available to us all if we want to take the time to go find it and see it for ourselves, but most prefer to sit with the iPhone in one hand and the remote in the other, and let these other politically driven sources give us our opinions. We ravenously consume anything that confirms us and venomously reject that which does not, regardless of the source or validity. We have become intellectually lazy. It is just easier to hate and mock those that we disagree with, the truth be damned. We succumb to confirmation bias. We act as if we have the only truth, when in fact it is nothing more than a borrowed narrative from one outlet or another. The politicians and the pundits are all too happy to provide us with our opinions and inject their version of “truth” into our personal ideologies and feed the inferno of hate.
We're all susceptible. It is easy to get sucked in, and it takes significant effort to overcome. In this age of moral relativity, it is just too simple and too convenient to mold the "truth" to our lives and our views, or create our own "truth" rather than to mold our lives to the truth. The truth is not relative. It is not elusive, but it is not always what we want it to be, and it doesn’t always make us feel the way we want it to. It is never a good idea to put all of out trust in other men. We all have the same fatal flaws. If you diligently and sincerely seek the truth, you will find it. You may not like it, but you will know it is the truth.
There is an enemy among us that is desperate to hide this from us, but the truth will not be suppressed. As it rises, those that fear it are being exposed in their desperation. As I have observed the left attempt to destroy one person after another, from Kavanaugh, to Trump and everyone in between, one thing has become clear. Character assassination is the desperate tactic of people who have none.
Our national motto is still "In God We Trust". Look at any denomination of currency that you have in your pocket. If you are trusting in anything else, check your motive. Pride is not our friend. We are either feeding the fire of hatred, sowing the seeds of love, or are just along for the ride and letting simple cause and effect determine our outcomes. We all need to take a step away from our smart phones and laptops and take a long, hard look in the mirror and figure it out, because there are those in the world who think they already have it all figured out for us, and they will stop at nothing to execute their plan.
John is a Freelance Writer and Consultant with a focus on border and immigration related issues, personal security and leadership development/mentoring.
John retired from and draws on 29 years of experience with the United States Border Patrol where he held various positions during his career to include:
Associate Chief, Unmanned Aerial Systems, Headquarters Border Patrol
(A) Deputy Chief, El Paso, Texas
Division Chief Operations, Tucson, Arizona
Assistant Chief, Tucson, Arizona
Agent in Charge, Nogales, Arizona,
Spec Ops Supervisor, Prosecution Supervisor, BORTAC Tactical Team
John has a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Maine and completed an Advanced Management Program at the University of Chicago Booth.John has been on various church boards, been involved with community event planning and enjoys traveling and engaging in consensus building, leadership development and mentoring.