The Heart of the Nation

Jill - Mill Creek, Washington
Entered on February 11, 2009
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: family

I believe in Family. I believe that the Family is the single most important unit of society in the world. I also believe the Family is falling apart, because of a lack of family values, especially in America. I believe Family is the foundation of America, and with the disintegration of this important unit, so fades the American Dream.

I believe that we as Americans need to put family values back at the top of our priority list. There was a time when sitting down to a family dinner together was important. A time when both parents didn’t have to be working outside the home. A time when “family nights” were regular, and family vacations actually meant spending time together.

Times have changed, technology has advanced, and our lives have become busier.

Because of this, it is now harder for many families to maintain Good old family values, that really supported the American Dream of working together for a greater purpose,

The society we live in today, doesn’t do much to support the family unit. Everything seems to be about the “individual” and getting more “me” time. For example: It is hard to find a job today, that allows you to be home by 5 to eat dinner with your children, so dinners together get taken off the family values list. Most companies in America don’t allot many vacation days to their employees, so spending vacations together are off the list too. Our society has even changed the definition of family vacation. I was flipping through a brochure the other day that showed 3 different cruise lines offering vacation packages that emphasized individual sections of the boat for parents, teens, and even children to spend their entire vacation apart. Where is the family bonding in that? With technological advances, less group activities are emphasized, like playing board games, or just talking with one another. Now Families are listening to their individual IPODS, on their individual laptops, or sending texts on their individual phones.

I believe since society as a whole is not likely to change anytime soon, then we as individuals need to make the change in our own homes. We need to reinstitute family values. It is up to us to decide if maybe sacrificing a promotion at work is worth it, to eat dinner with our family every night. It is up to us to make time for our family members instead of working on our computer, or listening to our IPOD. It is up to us to put our family members first, even above ourselves, in order to learn the value of service and sacrifice.

Again, I believe the family unit is the foundation of America, because the values we learn and practice in our homes is what determines the kinds of citizens we become. If we learn the values of hard work, honesty, and team work at home, we will practice those values as citizens, which will make for a better America. How can we learn these values if we spend all our time alone?