Note: This is an abridged version of the Declaration of Mission. It is followed by the rationale for the document in American and world history. For those interested in the full, philosophical text, please Declaration of Mission (Full Text). Audio files of the full text are provided on our Blog.
PREAMBLE: We the Compassionate People of the United States of America, in order to promote a more perfect union, are asking for those who believe that there is a gentler, kinder, and more rational and reasonable America underneath the bi-partisan-corporate-media-noise of our times to step forward and say, “Count me in!”
Too many times decisions are made in the governing of this country from a zero-sum, winners v. loser’s mindset, instead of finding middle-ground, and win-win solutions for the greatest possible good. Our representatives always should hold their constituents as human beings in mind as they legislate, instead of serving corporations, special-interest organizations, or themselves. Representatives with compassionate hearts and reasoning minds, are those we want representing us, and we intend to support and vote for people who share the same compassion-based interests in the well-being of the United States, as described in this [abridged] Declaration.
We get it. Not everyone is on the same page politically, but it’s America, and we were taught that such diversity is fundamental to who we are. It’s okay that we all don’t want the exact same things, so long as we take personal responsibility for keeping an eye on our elected officials, as they make the compromises needed to ensure domestic tranquility, promote the common defense and general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty for ourselves and our nation’s children, while ideally following and honoring the rule of law. It’s okay if we don’t all agree, but it isn’t okay, if we don’t get along with each other as human beings in our republic, first. Nothing matters or can get resolved, if we don’t step up and say to ourselves, our families, communities, the nation, or even the world, “PLEASE STOP!”
Please stop the madness of not caring about people as human beings. We are the people in America who want reasonable human-focused solutions to the problems that we collectively face in our daily lives like: bad roads, caring and educating our kids, helping our families and communities be better places, managing health care needs and costs, and, well, you name it. We know and care about the broad range of issues facing our nation, but we as individuals simply don’t have the time, energy, skills, and resources to deal with them all. However, with a collective voice standing up for human-centered and fiscally-responsible solutions to our problems (the two are not mutually exclusive), we can challenge ourselves and others to actively in daily life represent and promote a new ideological approach to governance from ALL partisans in this country, one that promotes and is called Compassionate America.
America is best understood as a practical, hard-working, caring society that has been battered by its lesser nature and the terrible injustices done to peoples, past and present. We acknowledge those injustices, and deeply want to see real solutions to the problems facing people who just as easily could be us, because we’re not heartless beings. We truly care about “other people,” because “other people” are our sons and daughters, aunts and uncles, mothers and fathers, friends and neighbors. We are aware enough to know that, to “other people,” we and those whom we love are “other people.”
From the lessons of history, Compassionate Governance acknowledges that human beings are just that: human, and thus capable of great good, but also great harm. Despite our collective and individual faults, it also recognizes that most people in this country are fair-minded, caring, and deeply believe that the primary way to achieve healthy governance is through our individual and collective commitment to live wisely and with care for our fellow humans. This part of our country’s history has been neglected by current, mainstream narratives, and it is best summarized in the often-overlooked words from the Constitution: TO FORM A MORE PERFECT UNION. This common-sense, framing ideal acknowledges that most humans very much want to lead uncomplicated, peaceful, decent lives, and to provide for their families and selves, while also seeking to leave the world a bit better than how they found it. In our lifetimes we will not fix everything, yet we must rise to the challenges of our age and in the spirit of forgiveness do better than those who have come before us, as we hope those in the future will do for us.
And, We Must Do This work! We’re a country in crisis. We must act. But, how? What kind of action is required of ordinary, everyday Compassionate Americans in the early 21st century?
COMMON SENSE UNDERSTANDINGS: We believe the simplest and most impactful solution is to live our lives and self-govern as Compassion Activists, honoring these types of understandings to the best of our abilities:
1. Strive against injustice whenever we encounter it in our daily lives.
2. Contribute to the well-being of others, especially those who are less fortunate.
3. Take personal accountability and responsibility for our actions.
4. Endeavor to be honest and humble with ourselves and others.
5. Reject negative and fearful mindsets that discourage us in living hopefully.
6. Make good decisions based on vetted, reliable information, while keeping human well-being as the top priority.
7. Be mindful of our actions and words so we don’t unintentionally insult or hurt others, while also being firm advocates for being treated respectfully ourselves.
8. Not sanction or stand by quietly when those who are vulnerable or need care are exploited or treated unjustly.
9. Be willing to sacrifice personal convenience and safety for a greater good, without being ignorant of the world’s dangers and pitfalls.
10. Strive to respond firmly, justly, and compassionately to those who commit injustices or are unable to correct their behaviors.
11. Show patience and respect by genuinely listening to others, even if they hold vastly different or upsetting ideas, since we’d expect the same in return.
12. Get to know “one’s neighbors” and contribute to our communities.
13. Communicate directly and honestly with others to connect with our fellow Americans as human beings, not as statistics or stereotypes and certainly not as contrived enemies.
14. Care about maintaining a healthy planet and environment because it is where we live.
15. Respect and meet the needs of vulnerable populations like children, persons with chronic illnesses or disabilities, and elderly adults.
16. Demand that the rule of law and fundamental principles of our democratic republic should apply equally to all.
We the Compassionate People of America declare the need for a narrative that is both timeless and “new” and that organizes all Compassionate Americans under a new banner to be embraced by partisans and non-partisans alike. Ours is a philosophy centered on doing right by our fellow human beings, regardless of our former or current political leanings, and it must be vocally expressed and actively lived NOW. After all, what else do we have, if we don’t have humanity? And, from this type of reasoning, shouldn’t “liberty and justice for all follow?”
Indeed, let the dawn of a peaceful revolution in America begin! Let it be one that manifests this ideological narrative in our country! We can learn from our history, and by this point, we should know how to treat others with compassion. We must stand and act together NOW and be the vehicles for Compassionate Change in our daily lives. By sharing this declaration with the Republic, we put forth into action the convictions and changes required to hold ourselves and others accountable for higher standards of behavior toward our fellow Americans, whether we like them or not (especially in matters of politics and governance). If We the People do not, then what hope is there for the future? What hope is there that this government of, by, and for the people shall not perish from the earth.
Please declare your patriotic commitment to role-modeling and outreaching to others about Compassionate America! Let’s preserve and extend the work of generations of ordinary, Americans who lived decent lives, while promoting and protecting the values that made America a model of liberty to the world. Thank you!
The compassionate and reasoning people of America DO NOT APPROVE and are DECLARING OUR MISSION for self-governance to ourselves, those who are elected to represent us, and the world.
Our political culture is multifaceted, but one thing remains true: WE THE PEOPLE OWN OUR REPUBLIC, no one else. To the Compassionate American “liberty and justice for all” – truly means all! We come from the ranks of conservatives, centrists, liberals, and independents or non-partisans alike. Many of us have been decrying the state of the American federation for decades and overall do not think our elected employees and related appointments are representing the will of the real majority in our country. WE THE COMPASSIONATE PEOPLE of the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, refuse to give up on our stated duty to the ages to “form a more perfect union.”
But, as seen in the headlines and on TV, many Americans now fear for our future as a free, self-governing people. We are scared, confused, and suffering, but the Compassionate people of America are reasserting themselves and finding the courage to expand upon the values of the Enlightenment that have helped birth and sustain republics the world over! *
The Declaration of Mission is a new, American document of additional, governing principles from which the Compassionate Majority now DECLARES the standards by which we will vet all of our elected employees in 2020 and beyond! The Declaration of Mission was created by individuals serving their country via this “grand gesture statement” of civics to and for the caring and reasoning people of the United States.
Like other documents related to constitutionalism, it serves to advance the principles of self-governance by reclaiming the American narrative away from combative, partisan-media actors and reasserting our collective will for HOW we wish to self-govern. It reminds the United States and the world that “WE the PEOPLE” are in charge and have ultimate responsibility for the tone and style of our self-governance. –not Congress, not the Supreme Court, and not the presidency.
As history has shown many times over, in the course of human events, there are times when the people who empower government to act on their behalf must stop indulging and allowing those with combative, selfish, and destructive aims toward other human beings to be voted into office. Instead, WE the PEOPLE, must SPEAK WITH ONE VOICE through a document that solidifies our intention for the tone of our self-governance for the ages, before it is too late. We must declare our intention to maintain the positive, commonly-held values that our ancestors fought and died for in our republic. We will do so by also correcting the injustices and abuses within our systems in order to evolve our government’s role in serving human beings first!
Although we are hurting, the United States is more united than appearances show and the Declaration of Mission reflects that fact. It is a document to be read, savored, and discussed by all Americans! It reflects the common-sense will, reasoning minds, and loving hearts of the American people. Please help us make this “Grand Gesture Statement” to the people of the United States and the world, so that the ages will remember!
Let it be heard throughout the world! Americans are determined to reclaim that which we let slip from our hands – our fundamental responsibility to self-govern for the benefit of humanity.