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BETTER AMERICA: FREEDOM AND OPPORTUNITY

Many positive things are taking place throughout our society. Our economy continues to produce jobs and grow wages. Every demographic group is experiencing improved economic outcomes at the same time. Great number of communities see crime rates decline and hope increase. There is little doubt that this is a great time to be an American. 

The economic and national security overview of our nation is much improved compared to the Obama Era, where economic stagnation and global terrorism ran rampant. Despite the progress made, there is still a great deal of division, anger, and disconnect taking place in our communities. Many factors play a role in the growing trend towards political tribalism. Prevalence of identity politics dividing us around superficial differences rather than uniting around shared hopes and dreams. Natural conflicts among differing cultures with varying attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors. The fight against many traditional values that built our economy and society. 

American greatness is not solely reliant on the performance of our free market economy, but the unity of the people that drive that economy and make up the communities. Our diversity is one of our greatest strength, but can be a great source of conflict, if there is not commonality and consistency. America can both balance our cultural and intellectual diversities and our need for national prosperity. Americans must compromise on a set of shared values and be willing to hold all to the same social standards. Core values and consistent standards will be key for our return to true American greatness. 

There are many on the left fight against our traditional values and the true American way of life. The United States has not always abided by our espoused values, but many of our core principles and values are what made our economy and society great. The goal should be to identify ways society can better exemplify our core values and help Americans prosper. Future Americans need to understand how these values can help them achieve success, regardless of their personal demographics or geography. Economic freedom should never be a freedom that society abandons.

The United States is founded on the ideals of freedom, both socially and economically. Compared to other industrialized nations, Americans value self-reliance and the opportunity to determine their own economic future. Many Americans prefer to earn a living rather than receive one from the charity of government. Social programs may be vital to some, but not the source of our greatness and attractiveness to the world. Our vibrant private sector and personal property rights provide the opportunity that Americans seek, and immigrants leave their home domicile to experience. 

The path forward should be to expand economic freedom by helping more people develop the tools and skills needed to determine their own economic futures, not be a subject to government programs. Instead of growing socialist style programs, improve the quality of education and restructure programs to encourage work. As stated in Expanding Economic Opportunities, policymakers should help foster investment and growth of communities typically overlooked. Also, investors and business leaders need to rely less on demographics and more on character and skill set when selecting employees. 

Americans must also set aside past misconceptions surrounding race, gender, and other demographic characteristics. People should have the opportunity to pursue any line of work regardless of their demographics. Demographic qualities should not determine a person’s worth, but their character, ambition, and ingenuity. There is no denying that racism and discrimination still exist, but Americans must end these behaviors. Associating with people that look, speak, think, and pray like you only do a disservice to you. 

A better America can happen if Americans accept principles of social freedom, economic freedom, equal opportunity, self-reliance, and caring for those truly in need. Americans must afford these principles to all regardless of demographics. If the same standards are applied universally across society. Political affiliations or social popularity should not cloud clear violations of acceptable behaviors and policy positions. 

The acceptance of a common set of shared values does not preclude the ability of people having additional values or beliefs. But society should recognize the common shared values that promote universal growth and prosperity. Regardless of background, Americans, through birth or naturalization, all value opportunity, freedom, and some level of self-reliance. If society truly values equality, it will hold all to the same standards.