Monday, February 22, 2016
People vs. Establishment, and Why We Are the Answer
Having said all of that, I must now say that with all the excitement of the election, there is palpable fear. We, as a nation, are more divided, more bitter, and more angry than I can remember since the 60's and 70's. When I compare the two periods of revolt, the cry was for freedom...FREEDOM! The same college professors extolling the virtues of Socialism (a system of government that limits freedom in order to produce sameness and fairness) are the same Hippies that were crying for the government to get out of their free love, and drug taking lifestyle. I confess that I struggle to see the correlation, but, maybe they took too many of those drugs back in the 60's and 70's. The cries we hear today are for more freedom and more liberty, more protection of our "inalienable" rights as listed in our constitution. Many in the government are actively trying to limit these rights, and sadly, many in our country have no clue why we must protect ourselves from them. College students are crying because they can't pay off their student loans, low wage workers are complaining that they don't make enough and are being mistreated. The list of fears is very long, and what we are fearful of varies greatly.
As for me, I too, still carry student debt, I am concerned for my children and grandchildren, I am concerned about our nations security, I am fearful of an every growing government and its power, I am fearful of the attacks on religion, gun rights, health care, property rights and higher and higher taxes, and I know that my good friends on the left are concerned over the same subjects, though perhaps for different reasons. The good news is that there is a consensus on the issues, where we differ is on the solutions. But, is there a chance that we can be united again? Can we come back together as a nation? We have always had our differences as a nation, we have always had passionate debates over issues and answers, but on the big stuff we have usually found common ground.
A person like me seeks solutions from within. I believe we must be honest with ourselves about the real problems and stop blaming others. What do I mean by that? Most of my problems can be fixed by me, I do not want or need the government to fix my problems. I want to be free to fix them myself. I do not want to stand there with my hand out until a benevolent government agency finally fills my hand with a devalued benefit from the tax dollars of my fellow Americans. Devalued, because our government is HORRIBLY INCOMPETENT! They have so many middlemen that get their palms greased before any person sees a dime of benefit. I wouldn't be surprised if 90 cents of every dollar goes to feed the government before it ever feeds a hungry child.
I want to be responsible for my health, wealth, actions, successes and failures. I do not expect to be equal to everyone, nor do I want to be. I am equal in the eyes of God and that's good enough for me. I am reminded of President Kennedy's famous statement; "Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country". As for me, the best thing I can do for my country is to honor the constitution, respect our history, be self reliant, be kind to my fellow man, be charitable toward those in need, give a hand up to others rather than a hand out. Get involved with our youth and teach them what little I may know that can help them.
I confess to using government aid at times past in my life, but, can it be different? I think so. I have been so blessed by the kindness of others at critical times in my life, and I did not have to fill out a government form, stand in line for hours, or put up with a bloated bureaucratic system. Family, friends and my church have been a great blessing in my life. I have also been able to help others because I saw a need, or was asked by my spiritual leader to assist others. And it feels good too. You cannot feel that emotion of love when you fill out a tax form. I do not feel, wow, sure felt good to give all that money to the government. When we are the ones who act, we do not addict a fellow American to the government dole. In doing so, I'm not taking away a persons incentive to succeed, but I am helping to give a hand up when there is a need.
So what does this all mean? I think it's a recognition of our core values, or lack thereof. I believe we have degraded to a point that our children do not understand economics, where money comes from, the true history of our nation, why the freedom of religion and all of our constitutional rights are so very important, and that because of these beliefs, we understand that everyone's rights must be protected, even if we do not agree. If you're in debt, get out, YOU are the borrower. If you are fat, exercise and eat right, don't sue the candy store. If you don't want to get lung cancer, don't smoke; don't sue the tobacco industry and claim ignorance. If you don't make enough money, improve your skills and talents to increase your income. And in all of this, we need to get the government out of our lives to allow us to be self-reliant; reduce regulations to remove barriers to entry, and hold fast to our constitutional rights, this cannot be stressed enough.
It's an election year, so get out there and "SHOUT IT, OUT LOUD!"