Are Muslim terrorists capable of understanding what our government is all about?
Editor's note: The following is a response Larry Hatch, a Virginia Beach resident drafted to the Arab News. This is the copy he sent VNS:
Dear Arab News,
I am an American.
I read with great interest the opinions expressed in the Arab News because I, unlike many of my countrymen, work diligently to keep an open mind about what the rest of the world thinks of the United States.
Not only, I believe, do many in the Muslim world misunderstand America, but many Americans, who are blind of their own nation's impressive history, qualify as American only by happenstance of birth.
In order to truly understand the United States you must look back at the history of the North American continent prior to, and then after, independence from England. This continent functioned as a colony of England for over 150 years with a colonial capitol built and functioning in Williamsburg, Virginia. Jamestown Settlement functioned as the center of colonial activity prior to that.
For a century and a half the colonists owned property, built businesses, raised generations of families, were protected by a colonial judicial system which reflected English law, and prospered. All the while they built entire cities and continued to accept boatloads of immigrants from not only England, but most of the rest of the world. Why did so many individuals desire to come to America? Individual liberty and freedom of religious expression. Long before July 4, 1776 there was a relative freedom to live your life the way you chose and escape the barbaric and tyranny of leadership whose only claim to power was being born to one of the "chosen" few who held tenaciously to power through fear and brutality. America was as far away from Mother England that a colonist could get which offered a degree of freedom to prosper and practice your chosen faith without harassment.
When the value of the import / export products between London and The Colonies became high enough King George III became greedy. The colonists wanted a higher degree of self-determination and the King wanted more tax revenue. That gave birth to revolution and offered the opportunity to bring together a group of the greatest statesmen, in one place, the world has ever known. The product of those gatherings produced the Declaration of Independence. Arguably one of the greatest documents ever produced by the hand of man.
Independence was not acquired with ease. The war was long and bloody. American colonists fought against the greatest military force the world had ever seen - and won! George Washington wears the title "Father of our Country" for good reason. He beat all the odds and, in the end, served as the President of the United States. When he was offered lifetime tenure in that lofty position he turned it down. To the end he held his honor intact, chose not to wear a crown, and retired as the most revered statesman of the age. Jefferson, Adams, Franklin, the list goes on and on. What did they hold in common and why does the United States still reflect what they believed?
The United States of America is a Constitutional Republic. Nobody has any more rights or power than anyone else. The nation was not formed to guarantee prosperity. It was formed to offer the greatest environment for the individual to prosper as countless individuals have done over more than 225 years of our history. We have no kings. We have no princes. We have no "chosen" bloodlines who are prone to becoming corrupt. We have a nation of law whereby each and every individual has the same opportunity to aspire to whatever his or her God-given talents allow.
Why do Americans see themselves as superior to the Muslim world? Why do Americans throw their flag up in the air and boast of our nation? Here's why: As an American looking through the long view of American history, and seeing so much of the rest of the world still suffering under the boot of tyranny, we despise ANY nation who practices a system of national politics which allows self-serving potentates, kings, princes, or any other self-righteous buffoon to hold claim to power over the mass of individuals. We fought and won our FREEDOM from oppression and cannot conceive of any population who chooses to remain indentured or enslaved. We see ourselves as superior due to our obedience as Christians to put NO POWER above that of Jesus Christ. God creates man. Man has NO RIGHT to determine the value or success of another man if he lives a just and lawful life. In the Muslim world you have allowed tyrants to choose your fate. Until you stand up and break the shackles and allow individual liberty to be the beacon and lead yourselves to true freedom, Americans will always see the Muslim cultures of the world as inferior.
Our history affects how we see the world to this day. The world is full of nations which hunger for freedom. The United States of America still practices the most free constitutional system of government on the planet. Our economic system has produced the tangible value which all the rest of the world aspires to emulate. The creative production bred in our universities and businesses is the envy of the world. Most of the rest of the world wants to live like an American - but they miss the point.
The point is this: Build a constitutional representative government that takes the crowns off the kings and put a crown on every single individual God has created. Make government serve people. Allow people to determine their own fate, including their religious fate. Offer no lifetime government leadership. No kings. No princes. EVER.
Then, and only then, will you understand why America shouts loudest "Let Freedom Ring"!!!!!
Larry Hatch - Virginia Beach