I’m speaking of this Republic.
With Rome, it was either when the Ottoman Turks took Byzantium (Constantinople) 1453 AD or when a barbarian deposed the last western Roman emperor 476 AD (ancient history About.com)
My Western Civilization professor said it began with (and I’m quoting here) “Moral decadence and pleasures of the flesh!” (to the cheers of the 400 or so horny underclassmen)
What is/was the beginning of the end of this Constitutional Republic we know as The United States?
The Whiskey Rebellion? (1791)
The Civil War? (1861)
Federal income tax (1913)
Direct election of Senators? (1913)
Establishment of the Federal Reserve? (1913)
The National Firearms Act (1934)
Or is it an amalgamation of these and many other things, eating away at our Constitutional substance, punctuated by further federal government oversteps such as Ruby Ridge and Waco? No-knock warrants, followed by airport searches and sobriety checkpoints. Massive surveillance of our electronic communications. Prohibitions of Speech seen as ‘politically-incorrect’. The killing of Blacks by police – whether or not legitimate actions – spun by self-serving propagandists into an ersatz race war?
Now followed by widespread racial civil unrest, punctuated by acts of terrorism against civil authority.
I’m certain all ‘civilizations’, be they primitive neolithic cultures like the American Indian when the White man first laid eyes on him, or the Romans, or the Christian Turks all thought they would endure forever.
And so have most of we Americans.
I guess the true question isn’t what was the tipping point.
It’s what do we do NOW?