Continued dependence upon relief induces a spiritual and moral disintegration fundamentally destructive to the national fiber.  To dole out relief in this way is to administer a narcotic, a subtle destroyer of the human spirit.

Franklin Roosevelt

+ + +

These are the words of President Roosevelt less than two years after he initiated welfare programs during the Great Depression of the 1930’s.

These are not the words of President Reagan, nor the good sense similarly stated by any number of patriotic, thoughtful, kind and moral conservatives from the 1930’s to the present day.

Indeed, lest you think that this was FDR on a bad day, it might inform you to recall the words of Robert Kennedy decades later as to our national and local government welfare programs:

” … the criticisms of welfare do have a center of truth, and they are confirmed by the evidence.

Recent studies have shown, for example , that higher welfare payments often encourage students to drop out of school, that they encourage families to disintegrate, and that they often lead to life long dependency.”

Alas, the modern liberal and the Democrat Party of the Left is incapable of learning from the icons of liberalism.

Rather, they play to their ideology and their own prejudice and ignorance.  They deny facts and demonize those who dare to disagree with them – skipping over FRD, Robert Kennedy and others. Such is the mindset and foolishness of ideology, and its totalitarian nature, when fact and history are denied.

No one ever prospers when ignorance and prejudice prevail over fact, evidence and common sense.

It takes a humble and wise person to admit their errors.  Those who cannot are not worthy to lead in any fashion.

If there is one major ingredient in our cultural chaos it is this: we have a political party of the Left and a government that has usurped the role of moralist – – – taken this responsibility from religion and the conscience of the individual, sovereign citizen and his or her wrestling match with their faith and what this faith requires of them.

Yes, we have chased religion, the individual free citizen and God from the public stage and government has run amok.  Look only, if you will, at entitlements which promise us national bankruptcy in our lifetime, or the dozens and dozens of programs that fail and waste scads of money in the process.

Think of the consequences of what the government does?

Does not the public distribution of condoms approve promiscuity?  The support of out-of-wedlock births license such births and the poverty that follows?

Lest we be dishonest as to the failures of religion and the Church in this saga: too many clerics have endorsed government as moral decision maker, and too many pastors and their religious institutions have shown their failures, some indeed doing so only after covering them up.

Yes, this shows human failure and corruption – a betrayal of values and virtue, the demands of faith.  Yet, the truth remains that religious narrative is the moral guide, and the individual must confront their conscience and the demands of their religious narrative and its beliefs.

Faith acted on by believers – not politics, policy, programs, judicial decision, laws, rules or regulations – produces a moral culture, a good society.

Confusion as to who plays what role in matters of morality has shown itself to be destructive and to instill inter-generational poverty and widespread, tragic human failure.

In the end, one thing is sure – the zeal of the social justice crew (but a small percentage in any religious tradition) is misplaced and destroys, as FDR said, the spiritual and moral life of a people, and a nation.

Time has long since come in which we are obligated to change our ways and seek for all people – independence and freedom to live and grow in the strength of their individual initiative and their faith recognition that they are made better and more capable, not by politics, programs and government, but by a loving God.

Shalom.

Advertisements