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American Thinker
American Thinker
6 Jan 2024
J.B. Shurk


NextImg:Can You Be Counted On?

Can you be counted on?  That is the question we quietly ask others.  It is the question good people ask themselves.  And I suspect that it is a question the Almighty will pose when we stand before Him to be judged.  

It is a question that has nothing to do with intelligence or talent.  It is a question that has nothing to do with one’s ancestry or station in life.  Yet it is the most important question when danger comes, time is short, and everything is on the line.  When you say, “I will hold this position,” can others put their lives in your hands?  When you give someone your word, do you treat it as a solemn duty?  When you make God a promise, can He count on you?

That’s the test for integrity, and it is a test that most people fail.  That’s because being a person of integrity requires choosing tough and sometimes lonely roads.  It requires the honesty and discipline to admit when you have done wrong.  It requires moral resolve.  And all these traits are in short supply today.

There are a thousand different ways in life to seek honors, and there is no shortage of honors out there waiting to be won.  There is only one way to live a life with honor — by being a person of character, strength, and commitment.  Doing so requires walking a thin line while almost everyone else veers far from principle’s path.  Seeking to behave virtuously in a world that mocks virtue is not easy.  Living honorably is its own precious reward.

Why do I bring this up?  Because 2024 is not only going to be a tumultuous year but also a year when the wheat is separated from the chaff.  Each of us will be tested, and each of us will be given the opportunity to prove our mettle.  

With two regional wars already raging in Ukraine and the Middle East, China’s Xi promising an invasion of Taiwan, and a not-so-secret globalist plot to resettle millions of military-aged illegal aliens into the United States, the geopolitical cauldron is boiling over.  With the U.S. government’s deficit spending, money-printing, and “green energy”-induced inflation spiking the cost of necessities at home while America’s foreign adversaries rapidly decouple from the dollar, we are one match strike away from the whole financial tinderbox going up in smoke.  With Democrats moving from mail-in-ballot fraud to outright removing Trump from ballots (as well as imprisoning his voters), the justice system’s self-immolation could incinerate what’s left of due process and the rule of law.  2024’s fortune cookie might as well read, “Only those who seek shelter and hide will see ’25.”

How we respond to these chaotic events will define both our lives and the life of our country.  When disaster strikes, can you keep a calm head?  Will you do everything you can to safeguard your family, friends, and community?  Will you dig down deep with steely nerve?  Can you be counted on when it matters most?

It has never been more important for people of integrity to lead, and in the trying times that lie ahead, there will be a public desperation for such leaders.  How do I know?  Because, with a few notable exceptions who are already being mercilessly persecuted today, America’s entire leadership class lacks honor.  

After years of shamelessly defending the wealthy and powerful from what it routinely denigrated as “baseless conspiracy theories,” the mainstream media have finally been forced to admit that two separate sex scandals (one involving Jeffrey Epstein’s child sex trafficking operation and another involving a Beltway prostitution ring — both probably honeypot goldmines for foreign intelligence services) substantiate long-running claims that America’s “ruling class” has a predilection for pedophilia.  After failing to defend Jewish students from on-campus attacks following Hamas’s October 7 slaughter of Israeli innocents and failing to truthfully defend her academic record as one befitting for the president of the country’s oldest university, Harvard’s Claudine Gay still refuses to take responsibility for her own actions and instead blames her ouster on “racial animus.”  After spending the last three years discharging servicemembers for refusing experimental “vaccines,” promoting men in skirts, stigmatizing conservative troops as “extremists,” and insisting that “white supremacy” and “climate change” are existential threats, the Pentagon has proven itself so full of horse manure that nobody wants to get near its stench. 

While the whole world knows Joe Biden is suffering from dementia, the U.S. press corps never says a word.  While roughly half the country believes his 2020 election “victory” depended on electoral fraud, and with evidence of that fraud piling up for three years, the press corps refuses to ask hard questions.  When hundreds of thousands of unarmed, patriotic Americans show up to exercise their First Amendment rights to protest for free and fair elections on January 6, 2021, however, the press corps can’t stop talking about an imaginary “insurrection.”  Today’s journalist class is filled with liars and frauds who have no time to speak truth to power because they are too busy manipulating the public and protecting the powerful.

America’s current “leaders” are power-hungry pedophiles, plagiarists, propagandists, and pro-Hamas partisans.  They chase cushy academic positions, meaningless journalism awards, and the superficial trappings of professional prestige.  They are not, however, people with honor.  If they were, most would have resigned long ago or begun fighting the corruption from within the Marxist globalist beast.  Instead, they use their resources to undermine those who have the audacity to exhibit character and moral strength.  The people who cannot lead and cannot be trusted have chased all the real leaders away.

What we have is a leadership vacuum.  For too many years, the worst among us have risen to the top, while the best take cover to avoid being seen.  American exceptionalism has withered because America’s most exceptional people have quietly disappeared.  In “going Galt,” they have left the keys to the kingdom with the ransackers and thieves.  Too many of the clergy — those who promised God, “Thy will be done, On earth as it is in heaven” — have proven through their own sex scandals and willingness to be silent in the face of government-directed evil that they cannot be counted on.  Too many academics have proven that they prefer their sinecures to their intellectual obligation to think critically.  Too many natural-born warriors have proven that they would rather avoid rocking the boat than protect the country and Constitution they swore oaths to defend.  

If and when tragedy strikes, though, these Americans who have been far too quiet for far too long will have a second chance.  They should take it.  Reclaiming their honor by admitting their past wrongs is the way those who have been silent can rejoin the fight for America’s survival.  Victory, after all, is never easy.  It is defined as success in a struggle or endeavor against great odds.  It is a difficult ordeal that ends in triumph.  In other words, there can be no victory, unless we first acknowledge that the work before us is immense and the challenges daunting.  There certainly can be no victory for American freedom, unless those with honor join the fight.  Integrity shines most during uncertain times.  And as those lacking honor “lead” our country to its destruction, more and more Americans will turn to each other with a single question on their minds: can you be counted on?

Image via PickPik.