It was the French social scientist Alexis de Tocqueville who famously said: “America is great because America is good. If America ceases to be good, she will cease to be great.”

There are some who consider social conservatism a distraction, and argue Republicans should purge this agenda in order to survive. These people are dead wrong.

Character and values make a nation. They underpin everything. They underlie the American financial crisis. They underline the difference between America and other countries. They buttress correct foreign policy.

America’s challenge to remain the greatest nation that this world will be determined solely by its ability to retain its character and values.

In 2012, forty-two percent of American babies were born to unwed mothers. When Ronald Reagan was first elected in November 1980, it was eighteen percent. That’s a problem.

The ban of partial-birth abortions (a live, fully formed infant) by the Supreme Court earned the opposition of the current American President, who was subsequently re-elected. That’s a problem.

Moral and cultural relativism are hurting America. They threaten to destroy its character. And these two relativism cancers are being sponsored by big government. But big government can’t be addressed or downsized without talking about the human attitudes and values that produced it.

As Star Parker puts it: there may be Republicans who think that we can ignore the crisis in character and values that underlies our fiscal crisis. There may be Republicans that think if we have a better tax system it doesn’t matter if we have a country of single mothers, sexually ambiguous and confused men, and abortion and euthanasia on demand.

I have observed as an outsider that America, even at the height of its depths, always feels only five minutes away from a full-blooded renaissance or revival. This is true for there are just so many Americans both home and abroad doing so much to return their country to its character and values. But it will take national leadership and individual action.

It should also be noted that compared to all other civilized nations, American’s character and values still remain head and shoulders above. But it’s like being the top student in the weakest academic class at school. It doesn’t mean much.

Americans need to consider the country and culture they wish to bequeath to their future generations, the owners of tomorrow. If they don’t, they may not have the country they’ve always had, to give.