We need to progress to the business of building our character around the absolute truths of self-responsibility and everyday common virtue (statement paraphrased from A Nation of Victims by Charles J. Sykes). The positive societal contributions of good character, and the negative consequences of its alarming decline in America today – especially as it relates to the public education system and to public/government service – are two sides of a single critical issue. These contributions and consequences may generate a cause-and-effect nature that continues beyond and outside of our own singular life. This is comparable to the familiar ripples-in-the-pond analogy.  In other words, each one of us does make a difference in the world around us. An unforgettable story illustrating this aspect was researched and presented by Bill Gothard of the Institute in Basic Life Principles. He speaks of two specific Englishmen who founded families in the eighteenth century. One man led a selfless life, and generation after generation of his posterity was documented as being heavily populated by doctors, lawyers, and ministers. The other led a life of depravity and crime, and generation after generation of his posterity was documented as being heavily populated by rapists, murderers, and thieves.

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