I applaud a letter to the editor which was published in the Clarion Ledger. Dr. Starner Jones hit the proverbial nail on the head.
I read some comments about his letter on various websites this evening. Unfortunately, some accused Dr. Jones of racism. Ludicrous! (And actually, the critics’ approach is more racist, as they assume the race of the person based upon the characteristics given when Dr. Jones doesn’t mention race at all.)
Others accused him of tarnishing the medical profession by “passing judgment” on a patient’s behavior. Please! Am I to believe, for example, that if a patient with COPD is smoking a pack of cigarettes a day it is not appropriate for a doctor to disapprove of that person’s actions? Disapproving of a patient’s choices does not equate to lack of care for that patient, after all.
Dr. Jones’ beliefs also do not mean he lacks charity. Rather, those beliefs reflect an understanding that charity should not be forced upon us by our federal government, for that is not the intended function of said government. And after all, forced charity is even in opposition to scripture. As the Apostle Paul wrote in II Corinthians 9:7, “Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.”
Our country was founded upon principles which were intended to guarantee liberty so that men *could* give from the heart. Liberty allows us to prosper through hard work—we are rewarded with the fruit of our labors. As a result, we are able to give back a portion of those fruits to others. On the other hand, forced charity through programs created by our federal government results in citizens giving out of necessity, and eventually those citizens begin to resent it. Ultimately we come to a state of socialism and then communism, and under such systems the hard workers begin to see the futility of their hard work. After all, the beneficiaries of their labors are others who are not working as hard. Those hard workers inevitably begin to realize that they can stop producing and ride the gravy train along with the sluggards.
Sluggards? Did I call all those who are not working “sluggards”? Certainly not, and I am not implying such. There are exceptions. And those exceptions would be cared for in a country where liberty abounds. Through the grace of Almighty God, the citizens of the United States of America are the most charitable of any nation on Earth. But they are becoming less so, and I believe it’s due in part to the resentment which surrounds the forced charity mentioned earlier.
Our great country’s Declaration of Independence states that our Creator has endowed us with the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Note that it does *not* state that we are guaranteed happiness, but rather the liberty to pursue that happiness! And no citizen should feel that they are owed happiness and prosperity at the forced expense of others.
As I stated before, Dr. Jones hit the nail on the head. The head of the nail is that of personal responsibility and the injustice which lies in one person being forced to pay for another person’s mistakes. The concept of accepting responsibility for oneself is fast fading in these United States.
“Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country.” – John F. Kennedy
How timely are these words, when so many in our country are looking to our federal government to solve the nation’s problems! The solution to our problems will not come from Washington D.C., but rather from *individuals* accepting *personal responsibility* for themselves instead of harboring an attitude of entitlement.
“If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” – II Chronicles 7:14