The Constitution, Article 2, Section 3, “He [the President] shall from time to time give to the Congress Information of the State of the Union, and recommend to their Consideration such Measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient…”
The State of the Union has become a phrase we use to refer to a speech given by the President. However, it’s more than that.
What is the state of the Union? In other words – in what particular condition is the United States of America as a country? The SOTU is the President telling Congress how healthy or sick he believes the country to be, then giving Congress recommendations on how to improve that condition.
So what is the state of the Union? What is our particular condition at this moment in time? And what can be done to fix it?
In his speech this week, Trump laid out his opinions on the matter. However, I think the condition of the Union can be summed up a little more succinctly.
The State of the Union is Divided
One side says that an unborn child is just a clump of cells, has no rights, can be murdered at will, and have its body parts sold for a profit. The other side says that an unborn child has all the rights of any other human and that those rights must be protected.
One side says that socialism just hasn’t been “implemented correctly” and that we ought to give it a try here in America. The other side says that socialism is a danger to liberty and will result in the loss of freedom.
Need I go on? America is divided.
And even worse than that, we’re no longer debating, we’re just screaming opposite opinions at the top of our lungs while freedom suffers.
Can We Agree on Anything?
While our Union remains this divided, it’s hard to have much hope. It’s hard to see us getting much done or making much headway. But with that in mind, we have to ask ourselves – what is the goal?
America is synonymous with freedom. The goal of this country is to promote and protect freedom. Ask any Republican, Democrat, or Independent “Do you want more or less freedom?” The answer you get will nearly universally be “more”!
More freedom. This ought to be something we can all agree on. The problem is, we often disagree on how to get there. This goes to the fact that we have done a poor job explaining the concept of limited government.
Let’s break it down – our freedoms are wrapped up in our God-given rights. Government is put in place for one reason – to protect our rights. Now is possibly the best opportunity we’ve ever had to explain the need for limited government.
The Constitution puts a lot of limits on what government can and can’t do. Americans needs to understand that these limits are put in place to preserve freedom. We need to show people a new way of looking at government. It has to do less.
They need to see that as government does less, we have to do more. We have to show them that the problems we face need to be solved by us, not the government. We must show them that government is not the solution. It must be limited in order for freedom to be preserved.
It might be a stretch, but if explained right, we just might be able to find something we can all agree on. And if we do, we can start healing the divide and the State of the Union can finally be improved.