There is a great deal of fear going around the US lately.  Fear of terror attacks.  Fear of refugees.

I’ve heard more and more people being afraid to fly, to go places.

What’s with all the fear?  Since when did this country become filled with a bunch of fear?  When did fear become the norm?  When did living in fear become acceptable and even, dare I say it, patriotic?  That’s a sick sense of patriotism that leads to places we don’t want to go.

The politicians certainly don’t help – and why should they?  If people are afraid, it can only mean one thing – people will feel like they need the politicians to save them.  And there’s nothing politicians love more than to be needed by people.  It ensures that they will have job and be able to employ a whole bunch of other people in some government program designed to “protect us.”  Politicians love to take on the savior role.

Seriously though, when did fear become cool?  This is a recent development.

Of course, fear has always existed, as long as there has been people around.  There is fear during every war.  There was fear during the cold war.  But this feels different – it feels a bit more irrational.  I don’t think I have the words to describe it.

And allowing the country to be in the grip of fear is not only unnecessary, but also harmful.  And for that, I’m disappointed in our so-called leadership.  What do we need right now?  Reality and reassurance.

It’s no secret that I’m not a big fan of the President.  Then again, I’m not a big fan of most politicians.  Half the time I can’t believe some of these people get elected.

However, it was be nice and helpful if the President would do some kind of national broadcast and say something that would sound something like this:

“Good evening.  In light of recent attacks in Europe and the possibility of attacks in the coming days, I want to take a moment to address the country.

Terror is real.  These attacks are real.  There are people who want nothing more than to destroy our way of life and to kill us.  They have told us these things and we have seen them carry out this sick vision in Paris and other parts of the world.

There are plenty of reasons to let fear into our lives lately.  Beyond these attacks, there have been shootings, racial tensions, and a great deal of civil unrest in our own country.  Some of you may feel like the whole world is coming apart at the seems.

But I’m here to tell you something important – you and I have a choice.  We can choose to live in fear.  The price of this choice is that we lose more freedom.  The cost of fear is restriction.  Ben Franklin once said that the man who would give up a little bit of liberty for security, deserves neither.  And the fact is, you can’t have both.

The other choice we can make is different.  We can recognize the reality of fear and terror around us and decide that we will not let fear have a grip on our lives – we will not let it choke us to death.  Instead we will live in peace and hope.  We will continue to live.  We will mourn the losses we have experienced.  We will fight where we need to.  But we will not allow ourselves and out country to be led into a slavery of fear and become servants to that fear.

I ask you tonight to do one thing – take a moment of silence.  If you are person of faith, then I ask you to pray.  Pray for those who would cause us harm.  Pray for our nation.  Pray for your neighbors.  Then I want you to do one more thing – find a neighbor, or even a stranger on the street and tell them this – “Be not afraid.  We’re in this together.”

Be not afraid America.  We’re in tough times right now, but we’ve gotten through much worse.  Just ask the Greatest generation.  We’ll get through this too.  This isn’t the end of America.  It is the beginning of a new chapter for our country.  A chapter full of peace and hope.  A chapter where fear has no place.  A chapter where neighbors work together and care for each other.

Be not afraid America.  We’ve got people coming in from the chaos of war.  People who look, sound and practice their faith different from us.  They are full of fear from the atrocities they have experienced.  We have a solemn duty to greet them with peace and hope.  They are part of the new chapter of America.  We’re in this together.

Be not afraid America.  We’re in this together.

Good night and God Bless you.”