Thursday, October 25, 2012
The Shame of a Nation
I came across a news article that touted the United States as a "Food Stamp Nation". I know that in recent years food stamp usage has soared, but a food stamp nation? In America? It couldn't be true!
I stared in disbelief as I read the article before me. 44 MILLION people in the United States accept food stamps. Another 9.3 MILLION accept WIC. What has this nation come to?
When I was growing up, accepting "Food Stamps" was shameful. Men would rather dig ditches or shovel manure than see their family pay for food with government issued stamps. And it wasn't just pride that kept these men from accepting charity, it was a matter of freedom and justice. Free men don't stand in lines waiting for their daily bread, slaves do. Free men don't depend on someone else's benevolence to provide for their family, slaves do. Free men don't wait for others to direct their lives, slaves do.
This was once a nation of free men. In fact, freedom was so coveted that men gave up their lands, their families, and their sacred honor just to secure it. They fought to be beholden to no man. They shunned charity and embraced their role as provider.
We are the descendants of nation builders. The men and women whose blood fertilized this land built cities, traversed continents and founded institutions. They bled, they fought and they persevered. They left their nation a better place than they found it. They were builders.
What is our legacy? Ours is a legacy of destruction. We take, we plunder, we destroy. The children of nation builders have become the children of destruction. Not only can we not build a great nation, we can't even feed our own families. Rather than caring for our families and those less fortunate, we allow the strong arm of the government to steal money from our neighbors, all the while bemoaning OUR victim status.
Shame on us! Are we a country of free men or a country of slaves? Free men get off their duffs and do the hard things. Free men are willing to suffer in order to build something worth building. Free men realize that the borrower is always slave to the lender.
The truth of the matter is it is not and never was the responsibility of the federal government to provide charity. That responsibility rests squarely on the churches and citizens shoulders. There is no denying that people do need help from time to time, however, they are best served by help administered with accountability.
We need to become a nation of builders once again. Let's not leave a legacy of destruction for our children's children.