The American experiment. In a nutshell? The creation of a nation based on the best ideals of government cultivated by men that knew circumstances would arise in future generations. The key being that they would have built in legislative fail-safes that would allow problems to have sensible resolutions. They sought to form a government that could evolve. A government that would have the ability to adapt to an ever-changing world along with a system of checks and balances. Using language such as “Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”
When reading the constitution, the brilliance of its creators hits you right from the beginning. They address the first means of establishing a community, having the ability to communicate with one another. Language is the first connection that establishes culture. Our First Amendment is the right to free speech, press, petition, assembly and religion. I do not think that the founding fathers could have imagined social media. But they had the foresight to give us tools to regulate it. They sought to create a government that was unique in inception and would allow the United States to be a light for all other nations. The American experiment is still going strong. The science of it, political in nature is sometimes weird, but in a good way. Sort of.
I am an eighties baby and quite proud of it. I loved being a kid in that decade. Could particular movies from the eighties make the cut today? Our society and culture have changed dramatically since then. I am thirty-nine years old and I cannot find my footing on the ground of political correctness. The rules keep changing too fast to figure out why.
For instance, one of my favorite childhood movies is Weird Science. The plot centers around two teenage boys hacking into a government computer program to create their ideal woman, Lisa. Lisa is Risky Business meets Mary Poppins. Lisa has magical powers; she does everything from make Corvettes appear out of thin air to erasing someone’s memory. Lisa solves all of the main characters’ problems. She helps them become cool, stops their bullying problems and helps them “get the girl.” Everything turns out great in the end, but after revisiting the movie, there are some issues.
First, teenage boys creating a woman. Enough said. There is also underage drinking. The movie also has some misogynistic viewpoints outside its original premise. There are a lot of scenes from the movie that would be up for discussion. Did I realize this as a kid watching? No. As I get older a lot of things from my childhood are vastly different. I remember when you played outside until the street lights came on. America is going through the same kind of phase. People are starting to look back at America’s history and say, “No that’s not right.” The same arguments are being used from the past, but this time it’s not a room full of White men. The room is full of diversity. If you don’t like it, too bad. Blame the founding fathers. They brought African slaves to this land. They designed this country for people to come here, because English settlers were still migrating to the colonies during its conception. Alexander Hamilton, the first US Secretary of Treasury wasn’t born in the colonies. If the current changes happening in our country bother you, then some further research on our Constitution and Bill of Rights will serve you well. Also, some history lessons. Change is inevitable. History is a tool best used to learn from the past in order to have a better future.
There is struggle in America. People want to go back in time. It’s not happening…unless we figure out time travel. Based on sci-fi movies about time travel, I hope it’s never invented. The American experiment is not about what America is or was. It was built upon a vision of what it could be. This is “A government of the people, by the people, for the people.” That’s us, remember? The people…not my people, not your people. When someone says, “This is my country,” they are wrong. It’s our country and it has ONE flag. I repeat, there is only ONE flag that represents the United States of America.
The American experiment is a weird experiment. It’s how I feel about the movie Weird Science. I really enjoy it, but I understand if some people may find it offensive. We don’t need a reboot or a sequel to Weird Science. It wouldn’t be the same. Yes, sometimes reboots are better than the original. Sequels are made to be a continuation of a story. The story of the American experiment has many sequels all ready.
Our government was built to be a sequel with a different cast of characters running our country elected by the people. When we look back on the history of America, some parts are offensive. It doesn’t diminish what America is, or what it can be. We don’t need a civil rights reboot or civil war reboot. If you reflect on those time periods in our history and think it was the best time ever, that’s fine. Also, understand that someone else may not feel the same way. And we all have an equal right to do so. So, understand with our country and its history that we must be equally balanced telling the story. Remembering that its best to focus on the sequels and not try to make reboots of the past.