Location: The Heritage Foundation's Lehrman Auditorium
At a time when the nation confronts dangerous threats beyond its
borders and within the homeland, America is also undergoing
profound change in its culture, economy, law and politics. Our
diversity, one of our greatest assets, too often produces divisions
and confrontations among people. Our economy, despite being the
strongest in the world, seems fragile and dependent upon forces
beyond our control. The nation remains deeply divided politically
and a new level of hostility has emerged in the nation's political
discourse. These represent fundamental challenges to "the American
way of life." And they represent symptoms of a larger problem:
America losing touch with itself. This lecture will explore what
has happened to the American identity and what might be done to
renew it. America is different than other nations. It is a set of
ideas and principles every bit as much as a nation and a people.
Ensuring those ideas and principles inform and instruct American
culture and politics has always been the nation's greatest
challenge and most essential task.
Dr. Eugene W. Hickok is Senior Policy Director at Dutko Worldwide,
a government relations policy and management firm. He served as
Deputy Secretary of Education during President George W. Bush's
first term. Prior to that, he was Secretary of Education for the
Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. He served on the faculty of Dickinson
College and the Dickinson School of Law for fifteen years.
This lecture is the fifth in a series to consider the meaning
and status of America's common national identity and to define an
agenda for restoring that meaning as the central idea of America's
politics and political culture.