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Ain’t True In America Today | By Louie Overstreet

October 14, 2021 by  
Filed under Community

Aint True In America Today


Louie Overstreet

Five sayings that once defined America are at best only marginally true today.

“Women and children first, and every man for himself” may have been true in filling the lifeboats on the Titanic, but it is not today. Women’s right to safe abortions is under wholesale assault. And at our southern border, immigrant children are caged and uncared for. However, “every man for himself” remains in vogue — especially as it relates to political power and greed.

“One [person], one vote” came to be represented by a narrow 5-4 ruling of the Supreme Court in 1964, which served as the basis for the passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. We all know that, after decades of progress, the act was gutted in 2013 — and dealt a death blow in 2021.

“A rising tide lifts all boats” is not true for poor folks in raggedy row boats along America’s coastlines, but the tide of wealth certainly floats the sea-worthy yachts of the rich.

“A chicken for every pot” can be found in the homes of families with six-figure incomes, but in the homes of families below the poverty line, the pots at best contain boiling water to make potato soup.

“The good, bad, and ugly”: the good was the generally held belief that if you worked hard, you could get ahead in America. The bad was that for persons of color and women, you had to do it with the anvils of discrimination and gender bias weighing you down. The ugly truth is that acts of oppression and suppression are more stifling today than at any time since the 1950s. The only difference is that such acts were once overt; today they are so covert, it makes the CIA green with envy.

The foregoing realizations and accompanying frustrations moved me to ask a dozen or so Facebook friends to contribute essays to my seventh book: “How to Survive America’s 21st Century: Essays on Personal Responsibility, Accountability, and Initiative.”

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