In her latest "coming out" announcement, Democrat Hillary Rodham Clinton gave an hour-long pander performance to all those who desire the government to provide for their well-being. Nauseating though it was, I listened as she told of what she would do for each group to make them "equal". Along the way, she also gave us an indication of her callous disregard for the First Amendment to our Constitution. Of course it was too much to expect that she would enlighten us on how her generosity would be paid for. Nor did she tell us why she has chosen to eschew the American dream in favor of what she calls equality. Marx, Lenin, Mao, and Obama, probably applauded her ability to prattle on about everything except personal responsibility and the American dream.
Winston Churchill once stated something along the line of, you can tell a lot about a country based on whether or not people were trying to get into it, or get out of it. He was speaking about the United States and its promise of the American dream. A place where immigrants could enter, not knowing the language and with little or no money, and struggle to find work to earn the money needed to support their families. In their early years of struggle, they learned the language and, in those years, they sent their children to school, where they too, learned the language and assimilated themselves into the communities. Some of those children often learned the trade skills of their fathers or other journeyman trades, and others went on to college to earn degrees and become professionals. (Back then, colleges didn't have fees that would bankrupt a moderate or low income family.)
In those earlier days of struggle, some things became predictable. For example, the immigrant families worked hard and were prudent with their earnings. They would pool those earnings and put aside money with which to buy a lot, and then to build a house. Most often, the house was a two family home and the mother and father would occupy the first floor and the eldest son and his family would occupy the second. As the mother and father aged, the eldest son and his family were there to take care of them. And, when they passed away, it was often the eldest grandchild who moved in to continue the process.
Common among the immigrants was the respect for work. No job was too menial not to be respected. To be without a job meant you were spending all day every day looking for work. If there wasn't a full time job, you would seek out a day labor job to do. You didn't quibble over the amount you were to be paid as there was always someone else ready and eager to step in to take your place. Those daily struggles never ended because there was always more to be done . . . another child to raise, money needed to fix or replace the furnace, the need to make room for a widowed aunt to move in, and more. You see, it wasn't the government's responsibility to raise that child, or to provide for that widowed aunt, or the aged parents, it was a family responsibility. Nor was it the government's responsibility to provide them with food, clothing, shelter, medical care, telephone service, and myriad other things.
Today, we seem to have lost respect for the things that made this country great. Instead of respecting and encouraging work, we tell people we will make them "equal". If we don't encourage learning and work, but we expect everyone to be "equal", that can only happen if we diminish the status of those who sought and achieved some higher level of achievement.
In recalling history, the Pilgrims initially tried communal living, where everyone contributed to the common store of foods and other necessities needed to get through the winter. But not everyone contributed their "fair share" as some chose not to work as hard as did others. But when winter arrived, those who had not worked hard or contributed much, expected to receive a "fair share" of the labor of others. The Pilgrims soon abandoned the each to his own ability, each to his own needs scenario. But today, our political leaders on the left are trying to convince us that we should ignore what the Pilgrims and those who lived under communism discovered about communal living. Rather they want the country that birthed the "Greatest Generation" and led the world in personal achievement, to try again to substitute group obeisance for personal responsibility.
We, the citizens, need to be careful of what politicians may be promising. What on the surface may sound like a harmless platitude is in reality a road not to achievement, but to subjugation of our personal desires and ambitions to the whims of government . . . a road to serfdom dictated by the non-elected bureaucrats who will spell out your rules for life.
(Bob Meade is a resident of Laconia.)