Gentle Warriors

Posted by Larry Miller on September 30, 2012 under How | Be the First to Comment

We conservatives and libertarians fight a never ending battle against the expansion of government giveaways and intrusions into our personal lives. This is something that needs to be done with greater effort and passion than ever. However, there is much more to the fight than political wars.

Mitt Romney was right, there is a sizable segment of our population that has become accustomed to living off the producers in our country. His percentage was off some as there are some people legitimately getting government checks. Military retirees who have earned their checks. Social security recipients who have paid in many years to receive their checks. Then there are those who really cannot support themselves. A compassionate society needs to give them a helping hand.

As much as the progressive left would like to deny there existence, there is a much larger segment than most people would like to recognize who are not interested in the national debt, in our country’s image overseas, or even the job creation Romney and Ryan are touting. There are those, who for several generations have made a science of knowing just how much the can earn before it starts cutting into their refundable tax credits, or welfare checks. They know every trick known to man to work the system to milk the taxpayers hard earned dollars from the bureaucrats whose jobs depend on giving away as much as possible.

These are the people the Republican candidate was talking about. They live in a different world than those struggling to make house and car payments and keep their jobs. He was right. Nothing he could say would cause them to vote for anyone talking about fiscal sanity… so the effort should not be made.

What we sometimes tend to forget is that between these two sets of Americans, lies a whole portion of the population that has found themselves with some degree of dependence on government that have real reasons and real need.

There are mothers who have been left hanging by irresponsible fathers infected by the it’s-all-about-me thinking fostered by our public school systems, politicians and media. There are elderly that, in spite of the social security safety net, still find themselves choosing between medications and groceries. Yes, there are people deserving of help in our world… those mentioned above and many others. Maybe it’s the guy down the street who lost his job because of the terrible economy, or the family hit hard by medical bills.

Here is where real “compassionate conservatism” comes into play. When George W. Bush used the term in his second inaugural address he was still thinking about using government programs to meet people’s needs. His father had a better idea when he called on us to be a “thousand points of light”. As much as we talk about personal responsibilities, so many of us, like liberal progressives, are willing to outsource our obligation to look after the “least of those among us”.

It is easy to be overwhelmed by the needs around us. It is easy to think there is little or nothing we can do. One the other hand, some of us can help one or two people. Some can do a lot more. But we can all do more than we are doing to ease the suffering around us. The key is that we open our hearts to those around us and do what we can do. This will accomplish several things.

It will help us handle our Biblical responsibility to look after widows and orphans. We may even see fewer people beholden to bureaucrats to have their needs met. Then, on the political front, those who feel they are looked down upon or ignored by the more successful in our world may actually join us in the fight for freedom.

Contrary to our public image, conservatives are the ones who really care about those around them. We don’t want to see anyone bound by the chains of tyranny. Because we stand against almost every government giveaway, even on the rare occasions when a true need exists, the formerly mainstream media and the progressive elites have painted us as uncaring about the pain of our fellow man. They forsake logic and play on the emotions by highlighting some real or imagined problem of the poor that would bring tears to the dead. Never mind that their solutions rarely accomplish what we were told they would do… other than expand the scope and control of government.

We can’t fix everyone’s problems. But if we start helping fix one persons problem at a time, they may well find that we care more and do a better job than any self important bureaucracy. We truly are “compassionate conservatives”. Let’s start acting like it and some of those who may have written off, may just join us in the fight.

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