The Jeffersonian ideal of a nation of independent farmers and ranchers living lives that rarely, if ever, conflicted with those of others has been replaced. Today, we live in a consumer society, where each person is directly connected to many, many others, near and far.
I have friends who live on a 1,600-acre cattle ranch in South Dakota. Their nearest neighbor lives more than a mile away. It may be of no consequence whatsoever to my friends if their neighbor comes down with some dreaded disease, even if that disease is highly contagious; to them, the way to avoid coming down with that disease is to do what they do naturally, day in and day out: Stay on their own land and away from the neighbors.
That plan might work for my rural friend, but my city-dwelling acquaintance would find staying away from the neighbors difficult, if not impossible to do; after all, for many urbanites, that "next door neighbor" might live all of 10 feet away!
The very act of living side-by-side with others creates demands for programs and services that, to those living elsewhere, seem unnecessary but, to those living in thickly-settled areas, are essential to modern-day life.
City-dwellers need and deserve a publicly-funded source of transportation in order to get to and from work, school, and the marketplace; modern urban living would be impossible without it. Just try to think of where all those extra cars and trucks would have to go to be parked when not in use, and how much more asphalt would have to be put down to accommodate them when on the road!
Modern industrial processes involve exposure to dangerous chemicals and substances. Without regulations governing the entire manufacturing process, from acquisition of raw materials to production and distribution of finished products, serious workplace injuries and deaths would occur much more frequently.
As the nation and the world become more densely-packed with humanity from all over, the notion of "We The People" will continue to evolve and change. For some, that may mean the loss of cherished ways of living, but time marches on, and time waits for no one.
Because of all the changes that increased population, and increased density of populated areas, will bring to our society, our culture will inevitably change. It is entirely possible that, in the next decade, one or both of our cherished political parties may go the way of the Whigs.
When the American Frontier closed in the 1890s, America changed; we became an industrial nation, with industrial ways of organizing our society.
Submitted by Virtual Newsroom