A friend of mine once posted this great quote from Cal Thomas on her blog:
I am not robbed by people who have more money than me. I am robbed by a government that wants to penalize my industry and give increasing portions of what I earn to people who do not emulate my principles, morals and ethics… We once taught our young people the virtues of hard work, saving, personal responsibility and accountability for one’s actions, chastity before and fidelity and commitment in marriage, honesty, integrity and virtue—not to mention the Ten Commandments (especially the one about not coveting that which belongs to your neighbor). We now teach them entitlement, victimhood, class envy and rights to other people’s money.
My friend commented that she’s not sure “chastity” still holds up as a virtue. She was probably being tongue-in-cheek. But, if you look at chastity in the sense of the number of children being born to single impoverished mothers, outside of any kind of stable home environment, it is still very much a relevant principle. (Here, by the way, is the entire somewhat amazing column by Thomas. It’s dated 2007.)
Our decades-old system of welfare and entitlement has created little more than generations of people who have all the desperation caused by poverty, but none of the motivation to change or work away from it. It is a huge disservice that we have done to entire communities.
Sadly, there are those who would like to keep them from becoming motivated because desperation and entitlement can be translated into class envy and, eventually, votes. Each election cycle, we have candidates for various offices who embody the very opposite of what this quote expresses: they want nothing less than a system based on the socialist principle of redistribution of wealth. This is, quite obviously, who we have in the White House right now.
Ironically, the left-wing hero Saul Alinsky alludes to this very thing when he said in a 1972 interview in Playboy (which one reads for the articles):
“We’ll give them a way to participate in the democratic process, a way to exercise their rights as citizens and strike back at the establishment that oppresses them, instead of giving in to apathy… We’ll not only give them a cause, we’ll make life goddamn exciting for them again — life instead of existence. We’ll turn them on.”
Leaders who push for socialist principles like redistribution of wealth and “taking things away from you for the common good” (as Hillary Clinton once stated and as President Obama clearly believes) do not want to turn the desperate and the impoverished on to anything other than the Democrat lever in the voting booth. I believe that every person deserves much, much better than a life of hopeless dependence.