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What All of Us Can Do

9.19.01
Balint Vazsonyi


Tuesday night on FOX News, veteran Congressman Charles Rangel (D-NY) spoke simply and eloquently about the way Americans respond at times like these. Acknowledging the existence of passionate debate on just about any issue amongst ourselves, he told the world in calm, strong, deeply-felt language what happens if our home is attacked, when members of our family are killed.

We urgently need more of the same - reminders that we are a family. By way of illustration, here is an example of what we don't need.

The Saturday "before," America watched the long-awaited final between the Williams sisters at the U.S. Open Tennis Championships. Billy Jean King, tennis icon and activist for women's increased prize money, was front and center as the event unfolded. During her interview, Mrs. King related in a highly emotional manner that in 1973, at the time of her famous match with Bobby Riggs, "women could not even apply for a credit card in America."

Miles, not inches, separate her statement from the truth. I got my first credit card from Diners Club in 1963, ten years before the date Mrs. King cited, because a female colleague of mine - a valued cardholder already - was invited to recommend acquaintances of hers for membership. This was the dawn of credit cards, so women were never excluded.

Mrs. King's remark, apart from being untrue, is an example of using a night of celebrations to arouse hatred toward fellow-Americans, on this occasion: men. There has been too much of that.

Most of us agree with the incessant admonishment coming our way about the need to avoid stereotyping and generalization. This would be a wonderful time to make it the individual and corporate resolution of every American to apply this lofty ideal across the board. Before you applaud, though, you should realize that it's easier said than done, because people would have to give up long-accustomed perks. That, for sure, is more difficult than submitting to additional questioning at airports.

Millions of decent, hard-working black Americans are tired of the rest of us thinking - there comes a black person, he is about to mug me.

They are right, but the rest of us are tired of being told we are the descendants of slave holders. The change in tone should also include halting the deconstruction and desecration of America's Founders. Like the rest of us, black Americans owe everything to them.

According to the Census Bureau, just under 25%, or one-fourth of the entire population, has been qualified as Americans with a disability. There is no way on Heaven and Earth such a number could be accurate, unless the Americans With Disabilities Act is being abused by a horrendous number of people. This is a drain on our national resources we can no longer afford. Doctors who invent bogus diseases daily can cease and desist, just as the abusers themselves.

The same applies to people on welfare. An old immigrant was asked many decades ago what he had learned as his American education progressed. "There is no free lunch," he said. We ought to return to the maxim that able-bodied people who don't work by choice, don't get to eat. I know it sounds harsh, but we need a change of attitudes if we want the only beacon of hope in the world to survive.

This time it really is about our survival - individually, and collectively.

We need to stop various Nazi/Communist-inspired trends, such as having children inform on their parents, or sending people to sensitivity training because they speak their mind. We need to stop telling our children that human beings, especially of the American variety, are destroyers of the Earth.

Instead, we need to tell our children - white, black, yellow or purple - that Americans have been the saving grace of this planet, and the people who live on it, for a hundred years now. That without Americans, most would be living in slavery - or not at all.

And now for the big one. Nothing has erected thicker concrete walls between us than the so-called hate crimes legislation. It has made a mockery of the Constitution by separating Americans according to race, sex, private habits or religion. Since there is no good reason to hurt, maim or kill another person, nothing can be a worse reason. "Hate crimes" is a deliberate misnomer for thought crimes. Thought crimes have no place among America's laws.

Call your elected representatives and ask them to repeal everything that stands in the way of "e pluribus unum."