Do you really need to ask? Just look around.
In the first decade of the 21st century, we have:
- Seen Americans killed in multiple terrorist attacks, including 9/11
- Learned that Al Qaeda is seeking and/or developing nuclear, chemical and biological weapons
- Seen terrorist attacks on U.S. targets abroad and on our European allies, including the London subway bombings and Madrid train attack
- Experienced the anthrax crisis, which scared a national already scarred by 9/11
- Invaded and occupied Afghanistan and Iraq and fought Al Qaeda in the Middle East
- Been threatened by a nuclear-armed North Korea
- Seen Iran refuse to halt its nuclear development programs and increase its support of terrorists in Iraq
- Witnessed an escalation of conflict between India and Pakistan, both of whom are nuclear powers
- Faced the possibility of Pakistan’s nuclear weapons falling into the hands of militant Islamists
- Experienced the emergence of a new diseases, such as SARS, Ebola and new variants of influenza
- Lived through the dot.com bubble burst, followed by a recession and economic woe, only to repeat some of the same problems with a housing bubble
- Paid more and more for energy, including gasoline, natural gas and heating oil
- Witnessed the dollar tumble against the Euro and other currencies
- Seen increased trade imbalances and growing government debt as well as warnings of inflation
- Watched terrorists blow up hotels, night clubs and Saudi Arabian compounds
- Seen the worst tsunami in memory
- Experienced substantial flooding, harsh winters, damaging hurricane seasons and record droughts
- Witnessed the failure of state, local and federal hurricane preparations in Louisiana and Mississippi as well as in New York and New Jersey
- Watched a terrorist group take over Palestine and set back the peace process between Israel and the Palestinians
- Heard the president of Iran threaten to wipe Israel off the face of the map
- Seen China threaten our allies along the South China Sea
- Experienced the resurgence of pirates in shipping lanes
- Seen hyperinflation strike in Africa
- Seen the collapse of our housing market, the failure of major financial institutions, the government bail out of Chrysler and General Motors, and an unemployment rate above 10%
- Experienced a day in which the Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged 1000 points in a few hours
- Lived through a surge of immigrants and drug smugglers illegally crossing the boarder from Mexico
- Experienced the largest and longest oil spill in history
- Seen the continued moral decay of our youth and the concurrent lack of discipline in our schools
- Raised a generation of obese, helpless people who feel the world owes them a living
Not to mention global issues such as a corrupt and ineffective UN, unchecked killing in Africa, the spread of HIV in third-world countries, the emergence of radical Islam, a festering resentment of America in the developing world, a growing economic superpower in China, a decade of recession and deflation in Japan, a decade of widespread illegal immigration into the U.S., an increasingly socialist European Union, the growing Federal deficit, and a decay of the constitutional protections that have kept America great for more than 200 years.
I’m sure that by the time you read this, you can add a few more to the list. It’s enough to make the late 1990s look pretty calm. In fact, I’d say the last time we were in such bad shape was in the late 1970s.
Some of the threats we face are natural. As we build closer to the sea, we are threatened by the waves and the hurricanes. As we build in wilderness areas, wild fires threaten more homes. As the world grows more crowded, new diseases emerge. When we elect weak officals with socialist views, our policies slide towards socialism.
Some are unintended consequences of our way of life, such as rising oil prices, threats of inflation, an entitlement society, obesity and laziness, increased drug use and abuse
But many threats are man-made, driven by social, political or religious differences. The sad truth is that many resent the United State’s emergence as the sole super power. They resent our economic clout, our size and natural resources, our wealth, our politics, and the way in which our culture slowly overtakes and supplants theirs. For example, militant Islamists extremists have made no secret of their desire to destroy the United States and our lifestyle, which they see as a threat to their plans to not only reestablish the Caliphate in the Middle East, but to re-conquer Europe.
In addition to the many countries that oppose us, there are many groups of people – both within and without the United States — who object to our policies, our positions on certain issues, our power and even our religious beliefs. These people would like nothing more than to knock us down a few notches. Americans have two choices: Expect our government to protect us as individuals from these threats, or take our survival into our own hands. While it is the government’s duty to protect the country from foreign aggressors, the government will seek first to preserve itself, our institutions and the bulk of our population. Preserving the life, liberty and well being of each individual citizen is at the very bottom of the government’s list.
In short, the government will protect and ensure the continuity of the government and our country, but the individual citizens had better look out for themselves. That is why we must prepare to protect ourselves, shelter our family and friends, and survive the next disaster, emergency, war, or TEOTWAWKI event.