How Did The United States Ever Become So Divided?

Written by Dr. Everett Piper

2021 is behind us. It has been another year of conflict. Another year of anger. Another year of division. A year of the vaccinated versus the unvaccinated, the masked versus the unmasked, of us against them. A time of racists calling everyone else racists, men calling themselves women and basically everybody accusing everyone of being the cause of everything that ails us.

How did we get here? How did the United States ever become so divided?

Some argue it’s all political and that if we would just set our partisan differences aside, all would be well, but such thinking is wishful at best and naive in the extreme.

The problem isn’t that progressives disagree with conservatives, Republicans with Democrats, or independents with Libertarians. No, political differences are not the cause of the disease. In fact, debating differing opinions isn’t the issue at all. As an educator, I’ve always believed that the give-and-take of a good argument is actually healthy.

The disease plaguing our culture isn’t disagreement, but rather it is that we have completely abandoned any objective standard for deciding how to arbitrate our differences. The problem isn’t that we disagree but, rather, that our nation no longer has any rational or peaceful way of deciding who’s right and who’s wrong. The problem is that we have abandoned truth.

In 1992 Rodney King brought our nation to its senses for just a brief moment when he uttered the now-famous words, “Can’t we all just get along?” For over 200 years, the answer was yes! Sure, we had our struggles. And many were of no small significance. But, for two centuries, we debated, argued, protested and even fought our battles with self-evident truths as our standard of cohesion. From generation to generation, we resolved to find a way to “just get along,” and the way we did so was to trust in truth as our judge and believe that it, and only it, would set us free.

The Declaration of Independence tells us that such truth is bestowed upon us by our creator and that it’s not made up by the crowd. Truth is not a construct of a king, nor is it the product of public consensus. Truth is revealed from above, not made up from within. As St. Paul admonishes, “It is written on every human heart.”

Since the founding of America, the unalienable rights that form the building blocks of our society have found their source in God’s revealed truth, not the government. The rejection of this fact — of this truth — goes hand in glove with our country’s consequent loss of cultural unity and cohesion. We dare not forget that John Adams once famously warned, “Our Constitution is made for a moral and religious people and is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”

In other words, to live together in peace, Adams (as well as all others who fought for and gave us the freedoms we now enjoy) believed we must have a binding glue that comes from somewhere other than ourselves, from something bigger, better and wiser than you or me.

To claim otherwise is pure arrogance; chronological snobbery, to be more precise. It is akin to pretending that all reality can be explained from within the test-tube of ourselves. This is a creed of mere mortals who think they know more than the giants who have gone before them. A religion that shouts, “we are the ones we’ve been waiting for, and we are the change we seek.” A priesthood that believes its incantations can stem the ocean’s tide, calm the nation’s storms and control the world’s climate. A Holy See that pompously presumes redefining biology and ignore genetics. This cult can cure diseases with cloth masks and replace science with scientism. It is a faith that genuflects to Dr. Anthony Fauci as its pontiff with a “vaccine” as its eucharist. It is a religion of hubris and lies in opposition to one that humbly bows to what is true.

This is the worldview that many Americans now share, and because of it, the sad answer to King’s question is, no, it appears we all can’t “just get along.” Our new national religion is one of feelings over facts. It is a church of the created over the creator, the self over the savior, and our power over God’s enduring principles.

History teaches us that freedom’s blood flows in the streets when the truth is beheaded on the guillotine of Jacobin arrogance. No culture has ever survived the elevation of Robespierre over Revelation, of lies over what is real and right and true.

A return to true religion — a return to the truth — is the only thing that will save our nation and heal our land. We can’t all “just get along” unless there is some standard other than ourselves that tells us how to do so.

Dr. Everett Piper (, @dreverettpiper), is a former university president and radio host. He is the author of “Not a Daycare: The Devastating Consequences of Abandoning Truth” and Grow Up! Life Isn’t Safe But It’s Good, both published by Regnery. This article was originally published by The Washington Times.

Dr. Piper has been a featured speaker in dozens of venues including the Values Voter Summit, the Council for National Policy, the Young American Foundation, the National Congress for Families, and the inaugural ceremony for the United States Department of Health and Human Service’s and Office of Civil Rights creation of a new division for religious freedom. Go here to listen and watch these and/or for more info.