I’ve been thinking…

The left has a very odd view of “The American Dream”.  Indeed, they have mischaracterized it in ways that advance their own political agenda among certain minorities in an exclusive manner.  They exclude people like me.

For them, “a dreamer” is someone who has come to America on the heels of an illegal act by their parents, and because they have been here a long time, they deserve to be legalized, the law notwithstanding.

I understand the sentiment.  After all, it is true that the immigration laws of this nation—which have always been clear that you cannot come here illegally—have been in salutary neglect for decades.  Why?  Because the feckless administrations of the past 25 years, well before President Trump arrived on the scene, have permitted our laws to be ignored and fall into disrepair.  I applaud and support the President’s effort to fix this mess, but this debate is not my point.

My point is the use of the word “Dreamer” in the exclusive way the left employs it.  You see, I’m a dreamer too.

In its purest sense “The American Dream” is a fundamental aspiration that embodies the very nature of our national existence.  

Our Founders had a vision of the American Dream that was rooted in natural law, won in revolution, ordered by a written constitution, and sustained by a commitment to freedom, virtue, and faith, all of which work synergistically to sustain our liberty.  

The American Dream, as inclusively understood, is for all to live freely under the rule of law, not the rule of man, within a constitutional republic committed to individual liberty as articulated in our Bill of Rights.

In that freedom all may enjoy the benefits of a free enterprise system.  All are protected by a legal system where we can pursue and fulfill our goals; provide prosperity for our families; and—as we see fit—join with our fellow citizens to advance the prospect that others may also pursue their American Dream.  And in doing so, we may pursue that dream unconstrained by a heavy-handed government that picks winners and losers by the policies it implements.

That’s my dream.  And I have others too… personal ones.

  • I dream of the day when I am respected for my deeply held view of faith, family, and freedom in the same way others—who may disagree with me on those things—insist that I honor theirs.
  • I dream of the day when innocent life in a mother’s womb has the protection of the right to life that God intended for all of us.
  • I dream of the day when people do not find their identity in the color of their skin, rather in the content of their soul.
  • I dream of a day when people come to the view that our nation is grounded in the rule of law, the right to possess private property, and a common American identity.
  • I dream of the day when fatherhood in America is once again viewed as instrumental to the family.
  • I dream of the day when motherhood is not viewed as anti-woman.
  • I dream of a day when parenthood—with an engaged father and an engaged mother—is re-embraced as the most efficacious way to raise children in a loving and civilized manner.
  • I dream of a day when people can send their children to the school of their choice without the government imposing economic penalties if they choose an alternative to public education.
  • I dream of the day when young people can attend universities that are truly committed to critical thinking and learning, not to political indoctrination.
  • I dream of the day when I can disagree with the policy of another and not be unjustly subjected to baseless accusations about my motivations for doing so.
  • I dream of the day when civil debate is centered on logical argument where facts are central in the exchange of views, and the participants press their case toward truth without invective.
  • I dream of the day when I can go to bed at night and slip into a peaceful sleep not worrying whether the great nation where I was raised will be here for my children and my grandchildren.
  • I dream of the day when leaders are what they say they are and do what they say they will…

I’m a dreamer too, you see.

Scott Lingamfelter is a former delegate from Prince William County.