Institutions exist to support human endeavors to improve the common good. Enshrined in our Declaration of Independence is that ”We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men [1]are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, driving their just powers from the consent of the governed.”

The institution that has the greatest influence and the object of the Declaration of Independent is government. It is responsible for promoting the ideas, laws, and resources for sustaining and growing the common good. However, today this is the institution with little credibility and is in a state of chaos. It is not politics that is wrong, but the politicians who run governments. Governments impact all aspects of the socio-economic system.

A country can only be as great as its governance. History tells the stories of fallen civilizations. No country or civilization is immune, nor does any nation need to succumb to this decay and irrelevance. The world is full of ambitious people, whose parochial motives are ready to pounce on the weakness of others.. There are times when you need to defend yourself. However, the ultimate power of any civilization is implementing the ideals of democracy and servant leadership into action. Rhetoric is easy because it just moves the lips. The difficult and vigilant path comes from your hands and feet. Theodore Roosevelt said it best – “Rhetoric is a poor substitute for action, and we have trusted only to rhetoric. If we are really to be a great nation, we must not merely talk; we must act big.”
            Humanity is both good and evil, weakness and strength. This is the reality of life, regardless of the times. Martin Luther King Jr. gives us the perspective – “Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle. And so we must straighten our backs and work for our freedom. A man can’t ride you unless your back is bent.
It is impractical to change everything. Focus on the area that has the greatest impact on socio-economic circumstances. Get into the arena, take a position, became part of the political process. At a minimum, make sure you vote! You have the power to change things, but you must be willing to risk being in the middle of the stream. Start local, but think global. Make sure that your government is working for you, not only a few.

[1] Men is a generic word for that time meaning all human beings.