Is America Becoming Lawless?
One would like to be optimistic about the current state of American culture. But one must be realistic. Some of us remember when our culture was quite different. What are signs that there has been a deterioration of law and order, decency and honesty?
Before the 1960's illegal drug traffic was very minimal. There was some drug traffic in the big cities but the country as a whole was spared. The Beatles in their songs and life style glorified the use of marijuana. LSD became popular and the hard drugs followed. Today drug use has infiltrated the whole country; even smaller towns and villages have their drug users and dealers. It is a curse in the country, maiming and destroying the lives of many. The law is flaunted by millions who use illegal drugs. Drug use encourages other crime, burglaries and robberies to buy the drug. It is hardly a sign of a society that respects law.
Crime has escalated. Rape is more and more common, along with murder and crimes of violence. Domestic violence is common and child abuse.
All one needs to do is to read the newspaper. The New Orleans hurricane prompted most to evacuate the city. The country watched on TV as the remaining population turned to looting and pillaging homes and stores. Armed gangs roamed the streets, shooting and killing. Finally 40,000 troops were sent in to restore law and order. The world was not impressed with our respect for property and law. Teenage gangs terrorize some cities and are found even in smaller towns. These are young people with no respect for law or human life. Their only loyalty is to fellow gang members. Murder and revenge is their way of life. Where is the respect for the police and law and order?
Now there are moves to grant amnesty to illegal immigrants. Millions in our country are here illegally, having broken our laws to enter. One may sympathize with their desire to earn more money, but we do not justify crimes because the poor want more and steal. The tolerance for such behavior shows a disrespect for the laws of our country. To grant amnesty is to legitimatize criminal activity. Is that the kind of society we want in America?
Where there is no fear of God there tends to be a lawless spirit. Dostoevski, the Russian novelist, well said, "If there is no God then everything is permitted." The proverb states, "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge" (Prov. 1:7). In turn this will bring a respect for the rule of law (Rom. 13:1). In an atheistic society, such as communism, the only law is the arbitrary rule of the leaders and human life is cheap. Witness the history of Russia under Stalin. As the United States was birthed it was in an atmosphere of prayer and respect for God and the Bible. Not all were devout Christians but some were and most respected and believed in a God over all. This is what has made America great. It is time to get back to our roots.
Donald L. Norbie
September 19, 2005