Ladies and gentlemen, the time has come to think for yourself.

Perhaps, like me, you’ve noticed an alarming trend in our society. We are living in what I call a “retweet culture.”screenshot-2016-09-09-at-6-47-17-pm

By that I mean a culture where independent thought has largely vanished, and people merely repeat the talking points they get from “professionals.” After all, why take the time to really think through an issue when someone smarter and more clever has already done it for you, and probably included a hilarious meme to boot?

In this day and age where opinions are more plentiful than Hillary Clinton’s lies, real facts can be hard to find. Original thoughts regarding facts are even harder to find.

When the answer is never more than a quick Google away and you don’t even have to spell the words correctly, how much thinking do you actually have to do? When you don’t know what to make of a complicated issue, an opinion is just a quick Google away.

We are all guilty of this to one degree or another. And I’m not dissing retweets or Google. In fact, retweets are great and you should totally retweet this article.screenshot-2016-09-09-at-6-39-16-pm

However, the problem arises when we lack the initiative to do our thinking for ourselves. Instead we allow ourselves to be spoon fed information by our favorite talking heads on TV. Instead of critically evaluating a statement or policy, we accept it simply because it came from the politician we like or some other “trusted source.”

This is a dangerous trend and I believe it is one of the biggest reasons we now have to pick between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump to be president. It is one of the biggest reasons behind the propagation of the myths of global warming…I mean climate change. It is one of the biggest reasons behind the apparent success of Black Lives Matter’s hateful lies.

For all that and more, you can thank the retweet culture.

Exhibit A:

Behold, an actual tweet:screenshot-2016-09-09-at-6-49-17-pm

Let’s think about this. According to this misguided individual, saying “we need to only judge others based on character and not based on skin color” is racist because it ignores racism’s existence.

First off, this is nothing more than a parroting a logical fallacy previously voiced by others. There was no independent thought that went into this statement whatsoever.

Second, it is a logical fallacy and completely baseless. Looking at someone and seeing first and foremost another human being, regardless of color, does not ignore any pain they may be experiencing. No one is denying racism’s existence by saying “I’m a human, you’re a human. Period.”

And third, apparently Martin Luther King, Jr. was a racist. Because I seem to remember him saying something about this…what was it now? Oh yeah, that’s right –screenshot-2016-09-09-at-6-02-16-pm

People are literally retweeting insanity because it looks good, it’s pithy, and they don’t have to worry about straining any brain cells.

America

What do most people think of when they think of America? Not the country, but the nebulous concept of what America is?

(I’ll give you time to Google what the word “nebulous” means.)

America. It brings to mind images of the waving stars and stripes, fruited plains, mountain majesty, the Statue of Liberty, the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall, Pilgrims, explorers, pioneers, the monuments, statues and buildings of Washington D.C., the bustle and hurry of N.Y.C. and L.A. contrasting with the steady, quiet beat of the heartland.

All this and more is captured in a single word – America.screenshot-2016-09-09-at-6-40-21-pm

But back to nebulous. (I’m assuming you were able to find the definition despite most likely spelling it wrong.) Think of all those things listed. They have something in common. They are all symbols. Symbols of freedom, liberty, and independence.

That is what America as a concept is. These principles and their foundation are why America went from 13 divided colonies to the world’s top superpower. These principles and their foundation are why we as a nation have invented and innovated more than any other country. These principles and their foundation are why we are the longest ongoing, constitutional republic in the history of the world, providing unparalleled freedom to millions of people.

I believe most Americans still believe in those principles. However, the retweet culture is eroding those principles. And it’s time for it to stop.

It’s time for us to take responsibility not only for our actions and words, but for our beliefs. It’s time for us to reclaim independence of thought. It’s time for us to critically examine everything presented to us as truth.

It’s time for us to think for ourselves.

Don’t forget to

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