The can-do American spirit says, “I’ll use traditional American values and find a way. I’ll learn, make good choices, respect my neighbors, work hard, never give up. If I fail, I’ll take satisfaction in knowing I did my best.”
That spirit led our founders to craft a Declaration of Independence with the ideal of “liberty,” of freedom for all to find the way that works best for them to pursue “happiness,” to create, as best they can, the life they want.
Our founders based that freedom on a Judeo-Christian moral code requiring everyone to respect the God-given rights of others, too.
The federal government they formed was limited so it wouldn’t itself diminish freedom while defending it against foreign nations and criminals.
The can’t-do, un-American spirit says, “It’s too much trouble to find my own way. I’ll use the power of bigger and bigger government to give me what I want, even if it oppresses others to do it.” Slave holders did that, as do crony capitalists, “public servants” who don’t serve but rather use and abuse (IRS), and others saying, “We’re helpless victims. If government doesn’t give us what we want, we’ll yell and scream until it does” ( Wendy Davis).
All who honor the can-do spirit and traditional American values are real Americans. If not citizens, they’re still Americans in spirit.
Compare them as Americans with the can’t-do citizens President Kennedy criticized for asking only, “what America can do for [them].”
Lee Nahrgang, Denton