America's freedom has been tested many times since the Declaration of Independence was signed in 1776. Indeed, our country and our form of government endured a second war with the powerful monarchy from which we separated in 1812, a brutal Civil War and two world wars -- not to mention smaller wars in Korea, Viet Nam and other conflicts to stem the tide of Communist aggression toward world domination.

And, though our nation was seemingly the invincible power for freedom on earth during the 20th century, and we continued to mature in terms of citizens' rights and civil liberties, the United States is now being put to the terrible tests of attacks on our people and our existence, and to not only win the war against terrorism, but to measure the worth and stability of our government and our society.

If, however, what has transpired over the past few decades are any indication, the results don't look very promising simply because our people have been relentlessly assaulted by selfish interests and battered by the failures of good intentions. Clearly, the powers that control us have turned America into a superficial society of selfish interests and extremes, replete with self-destructive divisiveness.

Patriotism notwithstanding, if our society cannot resolve the internal wars and conflicts of America vs the United States, how can we expect to survive a war against terrorism, which has been brewing even longer than our social, political and moral decline? Indeed, it has been less than two months since the attacks, but instead of dealing with them as we should expect, as expected, government and the media have turned themselves and many people into an anxiety society of fear and uncertainty, absent direction.

Even though we have the most successful form of government in the world, lack of democracy is certainly the root of our problems. The vast majority of us are ordinary people with extraordinary common sense. If the people had more democracy to make informed decisions regarding major foreign and domestic policy 40 or so years ago, we wouldn't be in this mess. Indeed, without the, "e pluribus unum" (out of many, one), collective judgment of our citizens making the most important decisions, America will likely fail the ultimate test.

Daniel B. Jeffs, founder
The Direct Democracy Center