The United States of America that we grew up in, and in some cases fought for, no longer exists. I would like to write something stirring in defense of our Constitution, but it isn’t under attack. It is simply ignored. Some have proposed that we have a Constitutional convention to add new amendments. What would that accomplish? Would our present Federal government respect a set of new amendments when they don’t respect the old ones? What good does it do to insist on one’s rights as a citizen, when in fact mere citizenship has lost its meaning? Americans have no rights officials in Washington feel bound to recognize. Both Republicans and Democrats overrule majority opinion as a matter of course. They do not doubt for a moment that they are the best and brightest, and that our voting franchise is merely an antiquated inconvenience. My elected representatives represent no one but themselves. They make war on my culture, my faith, and my security-- then they insult me in front of the elitist media on TV. The executive branch, the congress, and most of the judiciary have no more respect for me as a human being than colonial empires had for the most backward and primitive of their subjects. The elites that live inside the beltway and in the bubble of academia should try living in Ohio or Missouri for a few years. “White privilege” isn’t doing all that well in rural West Virginia. We are here, now, in this country at this time. We are real people with real lives. We are not statistics in a sociologist’s model, nor are we third and fourth generation perpetrators from some politically reconstituted version of history. It is all too obvious that our most unrepresentative of representative governments neither knows us nor respects us. They despise us. It is too much to ask us not to despise them in return.