First let me say that the words you see below are my opinions. They are based on not only what I have observed in recent years, but throughout my life. I am in no way suggesting that I have all or any of the attributes listed in the positive sections of today’s article, or that I am without any of the negatives. I am only suggesting that I observe and think about every nuance of life in the world in general, and especially in America. Like each of you, I have seen both the best, and worst of life. Being a logical sort of person, I gravitate towards the best, and the things and people who make us the best, and am scathingly critical of the worst, and the people who have guided society in that direction.
There are a lot of fine lines in life. A lot of tightropes to be walked. You have a friend with a problem, and on one side of the line you are helpful, on the other you are an enabler. It would seem that balance is the key. Good parents I would think, battle to stay on that tightrope all of the time. You want to help your child, but the line between guiding them past bad behavior, and approving of it, is fine.
When I grew up, it’s likely that there were not as many “helpers” as there could have and should have been, but it is just as surely that today, there are too many enablers.
It seems we are beset with diseases. Everything from our language to our manners, to our addictions and even the crimes that are committed, are either because of a disease, or something somebody else did. We are told that nobody is to blame, but it seems that is because everybody (else) is to blame. We live in a conflicted society, because it teaches us, that there is no such thing as right or wrong, unless the self-appointed arbitrators of the rules (or lack of), decide what those wrong things are. It is usually society’s most productive and self-sufficient members, that are labeled as the problem, when by example, they are often the solution. We admire the loud and selfish, and condemn those who live and give, quietly. Never in history, has there been so many (outside of the church) secular do-gooders, and we know that because they are right there to tell us how good they are. Yet, all we hear is how neglectful of a society we are, and how nobody cares. Could it be, that many of the do-gooders of today do what they do for the wrong reasons, and do not understand that doing good, is more than just giving things to people. Just maybe, a push in the right direction towards self-sufficiency is actually a kind and unselfish act? That is a truth that was once known and now forgotten in America.
In 1845 a family in Pennsylvania fell on hard times. They lost their farm and their bank account. At that period in time the government saw fit to settle the west and offered anybody who would remain on a piece of property, and work that property for at least five years, 20 acres of free land in any of 15 western territories. That family from Pennsylvania heard about a piece of land in the Nevada territory. The parents, their four children, their six oxen, two mules, one old wagon and their dog set out pretty much on foot to make the journey to Nevada. They thought they were blessed and thanked God for this country. They spoke Swedish but would continue to study English along the trail. It took a year to make the journey. They lost two oxen, one mule, and their six month old baby girl along the way, but they made it and did so as a family. They buried their child and over her primitive grave, thanked God for their blessings.
Today that family would insist that the government also provide the transportation. They would protest because they “have a right” to a living wage along the way. Not the minimum either! Even if they entered the country illegally, they would be assured (by the do-gooders) that the government (that means working people) will take care of any health issues they might suffer, and if they find learning English to be too hard, or even hard at all, they would order those Americans close to them to speak Swedish. They want all the benefits of America without adhering to our customs, our language, or our or laws, and there’s an ample supply of do-gooders waiting to approve of their actions.
Then of course, eventually there would be (and now are), those who will see the political gains to be made in assuring that there will always be an ample supply of the downtrodden, to depend on them (power), and vote for them (power). Eventually of course, there will be more of the “needy” than those who will care for them. More who cannot function without the politician, than those who are self-sufficient (like the Swedish family). Then it will be true, that government will be the only answer. Finally, we will have the epitome of a two class system. The haves (government and those who go along), and the have-nots (the rest).
The tightropes we walk, are indeed thin and precarious. What one household teaches about values or lack of, no matter how inadequate or immoral, has little consequence on an entire nation, but eventually, when that family is approved of and treated like heroes, there will be a second, and a third, and maybe eventually 150 million.
I can imagine that some of those who would find fault with this message, would state that every generation claims that the world is “going to hell in a hand basket”, so to speak. They would be exactly right. I’m not a fool, I realize that. I am quite sure than my grandparents generation said something pretty similar of my parents generation. My parents generation is commonly known as “our greatest generation”. I know for a fact that my parents said that about my generation. I am betting if you lived in George Washington’s day his parents said the same thing. They are all correct! While every generation, or better said, every decade or so of life, regardless of the generation, solves some problems and casts aside some iniquities, the overall moral fiber of it’s people grows increasingly weaker and more selfish. Just because that is a truth, doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t call attention to it, and fight to keep hold of the goodness that is vanishing. Any group of people who will not fight evil, deserve exactly the world that will result from it. We are getting what we deserve right now.
In great nations, its members always take responsibility for their own deeds. Their successes should be celebrated, only if they place the responsibility for their failings, on their own shoulders. We all make mistakes, it’s what we do afterward that makes the difference.
God Bless, Wayne