In the Crosshairs: Looking Back to See Ahead

While serving in the U.S. Air Force in South Vietnam during the early 70s, I had the opportunity to see the movie Catch-22 in the base theater. I’ll never forget the scene of the outrageous conversation between Nately, played by actor Art Garfunkel, and an old, lecherous man which took place in a whorehouse somewhere in Rome during WWII. Part of the conversation (taken from the Kindle book) went like this:

‘America is the strongest and most prosperous nation on earth,’ Nately informed him with lofty fervor and dignity. ‘And the American fighting man is second to none.’

‘Exactly,’ agreed the old man pleasantly, with a hint of taunting amusement. ‘Italy, on the other hand, is one of the least prosperous nations on earth. And the Italian fighting man is probably second to all…Yes, I am quite certain that Italy will survive this war and still be in existence long after your own country has been destroyed.’

‘America is not going to be destroyed!’ he [Nately] shouted passionately. ‘Never?’ prodded the old man softly. ‘Well . . .’ Nately faltered.

The old man laughed indulgently, holding in check a deeper, more explosive delight. His goading remained gentle. ‘Rome was destroyed, Greece was destroyed, Persia was destroyed, Spain was destroyed. All great countries are destroyed. Why not yours? How much longer do you really think your own country will last? Forever?’

The idea of America being destroyed was unthinkable in 1970 when this film was released. Even though America was still involved in the war in Vietnam, Richard Nixon was president and it seemed that the anarchy of the 1960s had been quelled.

Who could have imagined then that America would only last another 50 short years?

When I got off the plane at Travis AFB in California in 1972 after the flight from Tan Son Nhut AB, Vietnam (with a stopover in Japan), I felt a sigh of relief—I was back in the “World.” I was even more relieved after arriving at JFK and after having taken a cab through familiar surroundings to Bay Ridge, Brooklyn where my aunt and uncle had an apartment.

There was a certain feeling of security in the U.S. back then. No one worried about being attacked, that didn’t occur in America…then 9/11 happened and everything changed.

In my opinion, nothing has been the same since the World Trade Center in NYC came down. Yes, America rose up to fight back but the cure has turned out to be worse than the disease.

On the other hand, nothing really happens overnight, America was already pivoting away from her traditional values of borders, language and culture during the 1960s.

Even though the radicalism of the 1960s was subdued during the Nixon years, it wasn’t cured it just went into remission only to flare up again in the 1980s with the appearance of political correctness.

Political correctness has since metastasized into almost every institution in America: the mainstream media; Hollywood (actors and films); academia; the scientific community; government (Executive, Legislative, and Judicial); and churches…yes, even churches! Has America joined Europe and the rest of the world in this insanity?

So, here we are 16 years into the 21st century and you have to ask yourself, “Has anything really changed?”

Politics certainly hasn’t changed. I recall spending time, while growing up, with my parents at Uncle Wallace and Aunt Sophie’s house in Wallington, NJ which is very close to Passaic. Uncle Wallace owned and operated a storefront deli in the front section of his house and once a year, around Easter, he would give my father some homemade kielbasa to bring home, usually two rings which never really seemed to be enough. Anyway, in 1964 during one of our visits, my father’s cousin along with his family were there also and the men were having a conversation on politics at the kitchen table. My father’s cousin was trying to make a case against Barry Goldwater for president by implying that if elected he would ban rock ‘n’ roll. From that moment on, the name Barry Goldwater was to me anathema since I was a big Beatles fan.

So, after all these years I decided to read a transcript of Barry Goldwater’s 1964 acceptance speech. I wanted to see if there was any basis for believing that he, as president, would turn out to be some kind of intolerant dictator as my father’s cousin would have liked us to believe. To the contrary, based on the following excerpts from Goldwater’s acceptance speech I find there was no basis whatsoever for my father’s cousin’s erroneous statements:

We see, in private property and in economy based upon and fostering private property, the one way to make government a durable ally of the whole man, rather than his determined enemy. We see in the sanctity of private property the only durable foundation for constitutional government in a free society. And beyond that, we see, in cherished diversity of ways, diversity of thoughts, of motives and accomplishments. We do not seek to lead anyone’s life for him – we seek only to secure his rights and to guarantee him opportunity to strive, with government performing only those needed and constitutionally sanctioned tasks which cannot otherwise be performed.

Balance, diversity, creativity – these are the elements of Republican equation.

This is a party, this Republican Party, a Party for free men, not for blind followers, and not for conformists.

Naturally, no one remembers any of these great words. The only words from Goldwater’s speech that people tend to remember are the words that the biased, dishonest media will allow you to remember, and those words are:

I would remind you that extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice. And let me remind you also that moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue.

Goldwater’s obvious fatal mistake was his use of the E-word. Ever since then, people have come to automatically equate conservatism with extremism, while on the other hand, they have come to automatically equate liberalism (progressivism / socialism / collectivism) with moderation (normalcy).

So who are the real extremists, Donald Trump or the criminal-coddling Left? Lest we forget, it was not long after Trump made his [in]famous statement about Mexican and other immigrants being “killers and rapists,” that Kate Steinle was murdered in San Francisco by a seven time convicted felon, an illegal Mexican immigrant who was deported five times and returned. San Francisco provides a safe haven for illegal immigrants since it is a “Sanctuary City,” and the Democrats in Congress blocked the passage of Kate’s Law. Insane? Yes. The inmates (politicians) are now running the asylum (government).

As I read through the text of Goldwater’s 1964 acceptance speech, I thought to myself, “This speech could have been used today, almost in its entirety, by Donald Trump.” Pretty much all that he would need to do is substitute “communism” with “radical Islam” and he would have it. After all these years, very little has changed, if anything.

The experts like to make comparisons between Donald Trump and Ronald Reagan but I think Mr. Trump’s views on many issues are more in line with Goldwater’s not Reagan’s. But no one dare mention the name Goldwater—it has become a pariah.

I believe the very reason for the Left’s unrelenting vitriol directed at Donald Trump is because he has become the 21st century Goldwater Republican. And, if Ann Coulter’s theory is correct, no Republican can ever win the White House again. On the other hand, if Donald Trump does manage to get elected, he will in all probability be the last Republican president.

So, will the voters going to the polls in the U.S. make the same mistake on Election Day in 2016 as they did in 1964? Time will tell. Will the biased media be successful in demonizing Donald Trump so that enough people are persuaded to vote for Hillary Clinton? It depends on whether or not America is already too far gone.

Hillary Clinton was deemed “extremely carless” in her handling of classified information by FBI Director James Comey but she still leads Donald Trump in almost all the polls. Also, based on James Comey’s answers to Trey Gowdy’s questions concerning Hillary Clinton’s past statements, it seems clear that she has been less than truthful with the American people. While it appears that she can fool the FBI and large segments of the electorate, she isn’t fooling God (this is a theological blog after all).

Everyone deceives his neighbor And does not speak the truth, They have taught their tongue to speak lies; They weary themselves committing iniquity.

Jer. 9:5 NASB

Has America become like those of whom the prophet Jeremiah spoke of? Will Hillary Clinton’s lies eventually catch up with her as it is written:

A false witness will not go unpunished, And he who tells lies will not escape.

Prov. 19:5

Along with the proliferation of lies and liars, there is also no shortage of hypocrisy and hypocrites during this presidential election season. So…

Can someone please explain to me why the Liberals are all upset with Donald Trump for speaking out against the vicious personal attacks made by Khizr Khan during the Democratic Convention when it was those very same Liberals who during the Vietnam War called returning veterans “baby killers?”

Can someone please explain to me why Seddique Mateen, the father of the Orlando Pulse Nightclub shooter, was sitting in a prominent location directly behind Hillary Clinton at her rally in Kissimmee, Florida? Seddique Mateen is a Clinton supporter and gun control advocate—go figure!

Can someone please explain to me why billionaires such as Warren Buffet, Michael Bloomberg, Oprah Winfrey, George Soros, and many others are supporting Hillary Clinton when she is supposedly running against Wall Street and the 1%?

Can someone please explain to me why the mainstream media gives Hillary Clinton a pass for not releasing her 30,000 or so deleted emails but they slam Donald Trump for not releasing his tax returns?

Can someone please explain to me why Liberals break out into self-righteous indignation over Donald Trump calling it as he sees it when these very same liberals called George W. Bush “Dumbya,” “Dumbo,” “Bushitler,” and “Uncurious George,” among other names?

Can someone please explain to me why Hollywood actor Will Smith can get away with making an outright threat:  “We get to know who people [Donald Trump supporters] are and now we get to cleanse it out of our country,” but the Left went hysterical over Donald Trump’s Second Amendment people comment? To most rational, thinking people what Trump said was an obvious double entendre—not intended to be taken literally.

I believe the results of the 2016 U.S. presidential election will either confirm or invalidate my earlier statement that America has been destroyed. That is not to say that America is or will be destroyed in the sense that Rome was destroyed in 476 C.E. America will be destroyed when her borders, language, and culture are abraded.

If my assessment that America has been destroyed is true, then Donald Trump is running for president of a country that doesn’t exist anymore and that pretty much assures that Hillary Clinton will win the election. Let’s hope I’m wrong. On the other hand, if Donald Trump does win the election, let’s hope that Miley Cyrus, Whoopi Goldberg, Rosie O’Donnell, Al Sharpton, Jon Stewart, and Cher stick to their word and leave the country. Do you think they’ll be missed? I didn’t think so.

However, if it all goes bad in November because the majority happens to get fooled again, then we can all sing the lines from a familiar song, “Meet the new boss. Same as the old boss.”


Joseph Heller. Catch-22: 50th Anniversary Edition (pp. 272-273). Simon & Schuster. Kindle Edition.

“Goldwater’s 1964 Acceptance Speech,” washingtonpost.com, accessed August 15, 2016, http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/politics/daily/may98/goldwaterspeech.htm.

“Senate Dems block votes on immigration issues, including sanctuary cities,” published July 07, 2016, FoxNews.com, http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2016/07/07/senate-dems-block-votes-on-immigration-issues-including-sanctuary-cities.html.

“Coulter: I Got 30 Million Reasons,” Ann Coulter, Human Events, July 3, 2013, http://humanevents.com/2013/07/03/coulter-i-got-30-million-reasons/.

Peter Townshend, Won’t Get Fooled Again, Abkco Music Inc., T.R.O. Inc., Spirit Music Group.

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Copyright 2016 Gerard Sczepura

One thought on “In the Crosshairs: Looking Back to See Ahead”

  1. The other day I happened to catch the Tucker Carlson interview on Fox with UCONN sociology professor Matthew Hughey on, what else, the “racial reasoning” behind Donald Trump’s election win. Hughey implies that President Trump is part of the “white supremacist nation” which is America. Hughey accuses white supremacist societies of creating a “large racial underclass” to do the work that privileged whites refuse to do. If Hughey is correct in his assumptions, then how does that explain Obama being elected president? If President Trump is guilty of trying to perpetuate this “large racial underclass” then how does that explain President Trump’s executive orders to build the border wall between the U.S. and Mexico and the implementation of extreme vetting of immigrants and refuges arriving from countries other that those in Europe? Seems to me like the exact opposite is true.

    You need to see the entire interview for yourself, but it’s clearly an example of just how far down the tubes some in academia have gone. The Alt-Left, of which Hughey is a member, is truly the lunatic fringe of our day.

    On the other hand, the lunatic fringe is not limited to members of academia, try doing an internet search on “whites need not apply” and you will get hits from the BBC, Broadway Musical Hamilton, Obama White House, Rep. Keith Ellison, and Buzzfeed Canada. So, as the saying goes, “Racism in the name of diversity is no vice.”

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