Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Federalist No. 10: Unalianable rights -The Pursuit of Happiness

We all want to be happy. With the exception of maybe angst-ridden emo teenagers, no one goes thru life wishing they were sadder or more depressed. The question is, what does it take to be happy?

The answer is simple, tho many people have a difficult time understanding its significance or how to apply it. The answer is: you have to find happiness for yourself. We all have different wants and desires. We all have different values and priorities. We all have different ideas about what will make us happy.

Nowadays, the right to pursue happiness is confused with a right to happiness. The problem with this is a few things. First and foremost, while the former exists, the latter does not. Second, for something that is supposedly unalienable (cannot be bought, transferred, sold, or given away), this so-called "right to happiness" is not much of a guarantee. Remember that the right to life boils down to the right to experience life -the good and the bad. As a natural part of our existence, we will go thru moments of pain, suffering, depression, sadness, sorrow, and discouragement. We will not always be happy, either as a result of our own bad choices, or the bad choices of others. A third problem is that too often those who confuse the real right to pursue happiness with the imagined right to be happy take such a right to mean "their right to force you and me to make sure they are happy and content in life". Which really is just a justification for slavery. These individuals confuse the means with the ends, or use the philosophy that because happiness is supposedly an "unalienable right", then the ends justify the means.

So what is the pursuit of happiness, if not a guarantee that we will be happy? Benjamin Franklin said "The Constitution only gives people the right to pursue happiness. You have to catch it yourself." There a various understandings by conservatives of the term happiness and how it relates to property, and what the Founding Fathers meant by it, and while those are undeniable facts of history, for the sake of argument I will use the term as most people, liberal and conservative, do: the opportunity to make ones dreams come true, or ambitions realized; the ability to pursue a course or occupation that is conducive to one's individual's happiness.

"Among these unalienable rights, as proclaimed in that great document [The Declaration of Independence], is the right of men to pursue their happiness, by which is meant the right to pursue any lawful business or vocation, in any manner not inconsistent with the equal rights of others, which may increase their prosperity or develop their faculties, so as to give to them their highest enjoyment. The common business and callings of life, the ordinary trades and pursuits, which are innocuous in themselves, and have been followed in all communities from time immemorial, must therefore be free in this country to all alike upon the same conditions. The right to pursue them, without let or hindrance, except that which is applied to all persons of the same age, sex, and condition, is a distinguishing privilege of citizens of the United States, and an essential element of that freedom which they claim as their birthright. It has been well said that 'THE PROPERTY WHICH EVERY MAN HAS IN HIS OWN LABOR, AS IT IS THE ORIGINAL FOUNDATION OF ALL OTHER PROPERTY, SO IT IS THE MOST SACRED AND INVIOLABLE." Butchers' Union Co. v.Crescent City CO., 111 U.S. 746 (1884)

This seems simple enough: what a man can do, without encroaching on the unalienable rights of others, to further his own enjoyment of and happiness in life, a man has an unalienable right TO DO.

What does that say about arguments for welfare, minimum wage, or even gay marriage, that make the case that the recipients of such benefits have a "right to pursue happiness?" While it is true (as the poor man, the working man, and the gay man ALL have the same God-given rights as you or I), it does not mean that such, in their pursuit to make themselves happy, can then force us to accommodate their whims and fancies because of their inherent desire to be happy. "That property which a man has honestly acquired he retains full control of, subject to these limitations...that he shall not use it to his neighbor's injury, and that does not mean that he must use it for his neighbor's benefit". Budd v. People of State of New York, 143 U.S. 517 (1892) We all have the unalienable right to pursue a path we believe conducive to our individual happiness: not force others to run down that path for us and make us happy. This means that when we elect to follow a course that we perceive will lead us to happiness, and discover on the way that it is, in fact, unconducive to that happiness, we change course, or find a different path. Never can the pursuit of happiness be used as a bludgeon to force people to do what will make us happy.

How does the government secure such rights? By giving us rights to property, and by allowing us to do what manner of work that a man can profit from (provided it isnt illegal or infringes on the rights of others). In short, sustaining the free market system. What a man works for with his own two hands is his and his alone, and cannot be taken by force except as the public need AND use will dictate, or as punishment for a crime. If you are unhappy with your lot in life, CHANGE IT! You are free to experience life; you are free to choose. These freedoms, combined with the freedom to pursue happiness, give you all the tools you need to find that place in the universe where you are content. But true happiness will only occur when YOU work for it in your own life.

This is not a guarantee. Some of us will find the happiness we are searching for right off the bat. For others it will take some trial and error. Sadly, there are quite a few who may never obtain the happiness they seek, but in their pursuit they may find a better happiness than what they had before. But if we are to be happy, we must first pursue happiness. We may not, from time to time, be able to find the object of our pursuit, but we will never find happiness if we are not allowed to pursue it in the first place. It is only by the pursuit of happiness that we can hope to ever find it. Our government exists to ensure that we can pursue it.

We just have to catch it for ourselves.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Federalist No. 9 Unalienable Rights: Liberty

Second on the list of unalienable rights is liberty. Liberty ties closely to the first; the right to life, or the right to experience life, the good with the bad. Liberty is understood as being free from arbitrary or despotic control. It is the power of choice, of agency. In order to fully benefit from the experiences of life, we must be free to experience them as is our wont.

For liberty to exist, there must be three conditions met first:

1. The ability to choose
2. A choice between two or more opposing options
3. A consequence as a result of the choice made

The ability to choose- We are all born with the capacity to make informed decisions. That God which gives us life also gives us the ability to weigh, to consider, and to act accordingly, every man according to his circumstances and his knowledge. We are free to choose what path we will take, and to choose whether we will continue down that path or abandon it for another. While all men are subject to various pulls and impulses that his nature imposes upon him, no man is an automaton. We are free to make the choice to heed the call of nature, or or resist it, overcome it, and master it.

A choice- We live in a world of opposition. There is an opposition in all things. Good and bad, better or worse. Every day we are confronted with choices: some minor, some major, some critical, some trivial. This is not to say that all such opposing choices are always diametrically opposed (for example, a choice between a good option and a better one). The concept of choice merely stems from the reality of scarcity, specifically of our time. We are all mortal, and so our time here on earth is limited. The choice to do one thing means an opportunity forgone elsewhere. Time spent working is time not spent with our family. There will always be choices, some more difficult to make than others. Even the decision to not make a choice, is still a choice (between decisiveness, an indecisiveness).

A consequence- Inherent in any choice is a natural consequence induced by the choice. This may be something as simple as the inability to pursue B when we have chosen A (such as when we choose a profession or a mate), or it may be something much more dramatic (such as getting cancer form choosing to smoke six packs a day). While we are free to choose what course of action we will pursue, we are never free to choose the consequences of our actions. This fact seems to be the most troublesome to most people, especially in light of the fact that too often we make bad decisions as the result of imperfect information, or in spite of the best of intentions. The wonderful fact of life, however, is that which does not kill us, truly makes us stronger. While we may suffer for our mistakes (and some us suffer more horribly for the mistakes of others), we learn and we grow from those mistakes. We become more adept at making wise decisions, and reaping the positive consequences therein.

Albeit cliche, the saying "freedom isn't free" is nonetheless true. The natural instincts of man runs between two violent extremes: that of having all his decisions made for him (tyranny), or one where everyone decides for themselves, and only the strong achieve their goals while the weak are left to suffer (anarchy). For liberty to exist, there must be a strict, but fair, legal framework that establishes a set code of acceptable behaviors, and declares certain unalienable rights of man. Civilization cannot exist, until man can reign in his natural instincts, and learn to acquiesce to certain learned morals and traditions that society imposes on him. The cost of liberty then, is the submission of man to certain moral intuitions. It is only when man is virtuous, that he can truly be free.

Another price of liberty is the unending pursuit of truth and wisdom. We all have experienced the harsh lessons of decisions made on imperfect or incomplete information. We must covet truth, no matter its earthly source, or be forever doomed to blindly swat at the choices in front of us in ignorance. ''Truth is the oldest of all the virtues; it antedated man, it lived before there was man to perceive it or to accept it. It is the unchangeable, the constant. Law is the eternal truth of Nature—the unity that always produces identical results under identical conditions. When a man discovers a great truth in Nature he has the key to the understanding of a million phenomena; when he grasps a great truth in morals he has in it the key to his spiritual re-creation......Truth is first, intellectual honesty; the craving to know the right; second, it is moral honesty, the hunger to live the right." (William G. Jordan -The Power of Truth)

A smart man may learn from his own choices, but a wise man can learn from the choices of others.

As all the other rights mentioned in the Declaration of Independence, Liberty is unalienable -it cannot be bought, transferred, sold, taken, or given away. No man can take away my ability to choose, to make a choice, or to reap the consequences. To attempt to do so is to execute a mighty injustice, and incur the wrath of Almighty God. We must be ever vigilant to secure the right to liberty, that we may fully reap the benefits of the right to life.


Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Federalist No. 8: Unalienable Rights: Life

The more I learn about the human body, the more I am amazed at the ingenuity of our Creator. The engineering principles behind our musculoskeletal system, the chemistry involved in the digestive and endocrine systems, the physics behind our optic, nervous, circulatory, and respiratory systems; they all give witness to the beauty and complexity of life. I don't think I could ever become bored with learning and studying about the human body and all the various facets of human biology.We eat, we breathe, we run, we play, we sleep, all without giving a second thought to the complex processes that occur within our bodies at any given second.

Life. For something so precious, we take it for granted all too often. It seems that only in times of war, disease, or physical ailment do we ever stop and consider the value of life, especially when it's our own life on the line. Death in particular is a harsh reminder of how frail we mortals are, and how precious life is. "The Lord giveth, and the Lord taketh away," is a common eulogizing phrase. We are born into this world, and whatever gift or opportunity we are given in life is based on the fact that we live. "The dead know not anything, neither have they any more a reward" (Ecclesiastes 9:5). Only the living do.

For this reason our Founding Father's were correct in declaring life as the first among many unalienable rights given to us by our Creator. The definition of unalienable is that which cannot be transferred or sold. So precious is this gift that they felt it appropriate to label this right as something that could not be stripped away by anyone, not even our own selves, without risking incurring the wrath of Almighty God. Our life is something we are given by God, and only by God can it be given away.

What does this say about contemporary issues like euthanasia? suicide? abortion? human trafficking?

How about issues like government-provided health care? food? shelter?

The right to life must not be confused with the right to live. The right to life is the right to experience life, with all the good and bad that entails, with all the choices and their consequences that accompany it. It is the right of conscience, of the soul, and is as unalienable and inviolable as either. We cannot give up that experience, nor deprive others of it.

The right to live is not inviolable. In war, or as punishment for a crime, or as the natural consequence of bad decisions made, the right to live is violated every day. It is neither unalienable or inviolate. No one may arbitrarily deprive a man his right to live, but man can relinquish his right to live thru his actions. He can never relinquish his right to experience life.

Whatever your views on these and other life-related issues, does it not seem contradictory to deem the government responsible for providing things essential to life (like food and medicine), but then say the government cannot step in to prevent the giving away of life (such as in abortion or euthanasia)?

"Men are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights,-'life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness;' and to 'secure,' not grant or create, these rights, governments are instituted."
BUDD v. PEOPLE OF STATE OF NEW YORK, 143 U.S. 517 (1892)

Our government secures the right to life by ensuring that no man may take the life another without the harshest of punishments. It ensures that there are ample opportunities for us to provide for our own needs, and that we are free to pursue the wants and needs of the body at our leisure, without any direct hindrance from our neighbors (tho we are not free to choose the consequences). We may pursue whatever occupation that is common in life, in our attempts to put a roof over our head and food on our table. "That... which a man has honestly acquired he retains full control of, subject to [this limitation]:... he shall not use it to his neighbor's injury...[T]hat does not mean that he must use it for his neighbor's benefit [at his own expense]"
BUDD v. PEOPLE OF STATE OF NEW YORK, 143 U.S. 517 (1892)

Life is a gift from God, one that is often accompanied by the pangs and sorrows of mortality. Some of us will have harder lives than others. Some will have a comparatively easy life. Most of us will experience a motley combination of euphoric joy and unbearable heartache.And how often do we hear from others the phrase, "That's life!" The right to life, with all its associated joys and sorrows, it being the right upon which all other rights are predicated, must be of utmost importance. We are all in this world together, alive, for better or for worse. And we must learn to cope with the ups and downs of life without infringing upon those same unalienable rights of others.

We must treasure life, particularly human life, it being created in the image of God. We must see it as the single most important reason why we exist: to be exposed to good and evil, and to choose between the two. We must experience life, learn from it, overcome it, and master it, and then bring new life into the world and teach that new life what we have learned, so that the cycle of life may continue. We must never come up with vain excuses to diminish the value that individuals have, or the potential that each life brings. "Sickness and healing are in every heart. Death and deliverance are in every hand." (Orson Scott Card, Speaker for the Dead)

We are are born into this world, created equal by God. Each of us has the right to experience the blessings and sorrows this world has to offer, and to learn to choose between the good and the bad, and to endure the consequences thereof. And we must endure, until such time that God which gave us life demands it back.


Thursday, August 5, 2010

Federalist No. 7: A Firm Foundation

By now we can all agree that, as in the period right before the American Revolution, "these are the times that try men's souls". As elitists in Washington use "divide and conquer" as a standard MO, as both political parties continue try insist on leading us by the nose, and as our economy continues to flush itself down the toilet, many fined themselves despairing, or at the very least, getting really really frustrated with what seems like an endless cycle of corruption and fear.

Of course there are no shortages of answers from the right and the left as to what to do, politically. And all manner of political solutions have been proposed, defended, criticized, discarded, and recycled. I watch the news and listen to talk radio (It's no secret I enjoy watching and listening to Glenn Beck), and one of the most agonizing things about both is, at the end of the day I'm left thinking, sometimes even yelling at the TV, ''SO NOW WHAT?!". No doubt many of you find yourselves in the same situation. You watch the news, you read the papers, you hear the radio, and you think "Ok, so Congressman so-and-so is a schlub. Congresswoman so-and-so is crooked. The attitude and actions of the entire Administration is an affront to the America People, SO NOW WHAT? What do I do? What CAN I do?" No doubt that many of us who are frustrated or despair feel that way because of our own perceived impotence. We WANT to make a difference. We WANT the problems to go away. We WANT things to go back to more peaceful times.

It has been said that the price of freedom is eternal vigilance. But vigilant in what? Civic duty? The political system? Who has time to spend protesting or playing activist? How many of us would love to attend a TEA party convention, or participate in some form of activism, but cannot because of school, work, or family obligations? It's not fair that the squeaky wheel gets the oil, especially when so many of us are too damn busy to waste time playing the squeaky wheel.

So where do we start? I've always been, and will continue to be, supportive of a nation-wide movement to vote out every incumbent from Washington in order to effectively break the back of the two-party charade, and to send a simple but powerful message to all current and future leaders: "We are not as as stupid as you would like us to believe, and we are in control, not you!" But such a movement would take much time, organization, and resources, and as a nation, we are too divided to accomplish such a feat...for now.

So what can we do in the meantime?

"And [Jesus] seeing the multitudes, he went up into a mountain: and when he was set, his disciples came unto him:
And he opened his mouth, and taught them, saying...
...Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon fa rock:
And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a crock.
And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:
And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it."

If we are to weather the coming storm, then there needs to be a solid foundation up which our houses, our lives, are built. The foundation of any society is a strong, healthy, loving family; and the foundation of any strong, happy, loving family is truth and righteousness. We have to gather up truth -all the good and true principles in the world- and treasure them and abide by them, or we shall not come out true Americans.

Our Founding Fathers believed in truths that were self-evident: truths that did not need to be explained our expounded upon. One of these truths was that we are endowed by our Creator (that we are Created seems to be a given -another self-evident truth) with certain inalienable rights. That statement alone is a profound one. We are created, by a Being who saw fit to put us here on the earth, and to gift us with rights that no man can take away. Among these rights, our Founding Fathers continued, are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness (property). No man can take my life.The Lord giveth life, and the Lord taketh it away. No man can strip me of my liberty, and compel me to act in his interest at the expense of my own. And every man has the right to work, and by the sweat of his brow, raise up to himself wealth and riches such as will make him content in his station in life. And those who will not work shall not eat.

We used to call such principles common sense. We used to accept them as a given. They, were, as our Founding Fathers said, self-evident. If such truths are no longer self-evident, than it is because we as a people have fallen from the lofty stage of enlightenment that our Founding Father's had obtained. Our minds have become darkened, and we have become blind to the truth. If we are to obtain the same level of enlightenment, the same level of divine grace, so that once again such truths become self-evident, we must once again obtain that same level of noble civilization. As individuals we must become humble, compassionate, meek, virtuous, merciful, pure in heart, and peaceful. We must refrain from violence in speech and action. We must seek to do good, and be anxiously engaged in a good cause. This can be something as simple as spending a little more time with one's family. Teach your children by example that all men are created equal. Teach them by example, by your words and your deeds, that God loves them, as well as all men. Teach them that truth exists, and that happiness is only obtained by those who actively seek it, and apply it. Teach them to hunger and thirst after truth and righteousness as if they were the very food and water needed to survive.

This is how we will fight back. This will be our defiance against the elitists in Washington. We will live on, we will survive, and we will stand for truth and righteousness. Our civil disobedience will be to believe what we know to be true, even when our leaders tell us otherwise. The greatest blessings or acts of charity we can call upon against those who would seek to govern us and exercise unrighteous dominion over our lives, are our little acts of defiance and personal integrity.

It is time for us to find those truths once again. Our lives and our families will never experience happiness until we become a people to whom these truths are self-evident: that all men are created equal, and that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, and that they will be held accountable to the Almighty Judge for the righteous exercise of those rights. It is time for us to become a people upon whom Almighty God can pour out the richness of his blessings. Lets us thirst for knowledge and wisdom. God is more liberal in His views, and boundless in His mercies and blessings, than we are ready to believe or receive. Our Founding Fathers knew this. It is time we came to know it as well.

Sic Semper Tyrannis,


Monday, August 2, 2010

Federalist No. 6 "The Race Game"

Racism. Without a doubt one of the most pernicious and persistent evils to devastate mankind. A disgusting blight in a society that prides itself on the belief that all men are created equal. One of the most disturbing things to witness in life is an act of racism. Be it a foul word, a demonstration of disgust, or act of violence, the scars left on the witness are as almost as deep as the ones left on the victim. Racism has damaged the spirit of our country via evil language, lynchings, segregation, miscegenation laws, the Rosewood massacre, and slavery.

And yet if there is any country in the world that can truly overcome racism, I believe it to be the United States of America. From its inception our country has tried to defeat the idea of race-based superiority or inferiority. We fought two wars intended to end slavery (the American Revolution and the Civil War), and in the 50-60 years since the civil rights movement Americans have seen great strides in race relations, until recently.

It seems everywhere you go, every time you turn on the news you hear accusations of racism and hate-mongering. If you oppose Obama, or his policies, or you support secure borders or the TEA party movement, and you are white, you are a bona fide, good-ol boy, Jim Crow racist. Never mind if you have never used a racial slur in your entire adult life. Never mind if you have friends of different races. Never mind if you are married to someone of a different skin color. The fact of the matter is the civil rights movement didnt fix racism in America, it just buried it, and if you are in any way opposed to the man who has shouldered the responsibility to "heal the nation", it is because you hate black people. We have a black president now, and to oppose him is tantamount to opposing the entire black community....

...Or so the left would have you believe.

Now I am not so naive and idealistic as to believe that racism doesn't exist in this country. I've seen it plenty of times in my lifetime. There are an unfortunate number of ignorant, hateful people in the world, and racism is a social ill that continues to plague us despite the progress we have worked so hard for. The myth of post-racial America isn't that racism was conquered. We can look to our history to prove that. In a little over a century racism has gone from a socially acceptable paradigm to a taboo. In the same span of time the liberal notion that men are created equal, irrespective of skin color, has gone from being a radical ideology to a given. Racism may still be somewhat omnipresent in America, but it has become largely impotent as well.The first shot against racism was fired with the Declaration of Independence, and since then many battles against it have been won by blacks AND whites. Racism may not be conquered completely, but the war against racism has seen some decisive victories despite the odds, and I believe that same trend will continue.

The real myth of post racial America is the idea that the only racists left are remnants of an archaic society, -advocates of an outdated government- and all we need to do to eliminate racism is to get rid of such people, or at the very lest marginalize them to the extent that nobody listens to them (i.e your stereotypical white TEA partier, or what Obama calls "a typical white person").

The question is not whether or not racism is still an issue in America,but rather will it continue to be an issue, and WHY? To answer that we must look at WHY racism is still an issue today. This requires a frank discussion on race, one that will no doubt alienate a few people, and possibly earn the brand of racist (or race traitor as the case may be). If that is the price we pay to make the world a better place, then so be it.

Martin Luther King, Jr was without a doubt one of the greatest men to live in the history of mankind. He lived and died for his ideals. He has perhaps done more than any man in this world, save Christ Himself, to abolish racial hatred and sow the seeds of brotherly love. He lived great, and he died great in the eyes of God and men; and like most of the Lord’s anointed in ancient times, he sealed his mission and his works with his own blood.

Two things stand out about Dr. King's ministry. First, he taught the power of unconditional Christian love. He appealed to the Christian sense of justice, love, compassion. He did not rail against his opponents, or accuse or demean them. He invited them to let God into their hearts, and to feel a love that transcends race, and that humbly confronts evil and injustice with the truth. Second, he did not shy away from speaking the truth to power. He spoke on matters of principle.And he held blacks and whites to the same standards of morality, decency, and integrity. He called for a confrontation of the human and the divine, and an integration of the human spirit with the love of God towards all men.

Sadly, we see little of either teaching today when it comes to race. Self-sufficiency and equality of opportunity have been replaced with government dependency and restitution of victims. Love has been substituted with tolerance. As Charles Gilmer points out, "tolerance is championed as the appropriate response to the varying perspectives that have emerged. Yet tolerance has no cohesive nor healing power in society. It means little more than leaving one another alone. It leads to indifference, not understanding. Tolerance allows the gulfs between us to remain in place. In fact, there is little in the concept of tolerance to pull us away from racial isolation." Rather than have a frank (and possibly awkward or uncomfortable) discussion on race and how to overcome racism, we have become complacent in pursuing a narrative of victimization and blame.

So often in discussions on race there is a lot of talk about the wants and needs of "the black community" (without any mention of a "white community" for obvious reasons). Why must there be " the black community"? Why can't there just be "the community?" Does a black person value family any more or less than a white person? Do black mothers and fathers wish to see their children succeed and be happy in life any more or less than white mothers and fathers? When and where, in discussing the needs and wants of any community, does race enter into the equation? "If you prick us do we not bleed? If you tickle us do we not laugh? If you poison us do we not die? And if you wrong us, shall we not revenge?"

Of course the idea that blacks and whites have separate wants and needs because of their race is absurd. At the end of the day we are all human, with the same human wants and needs and desires. So why is it so hard to fathom that the manner in obtaining and satisfying those wants and needs would be the same for BOTH races? This isn't to say that there is an easy solution to fix racism and all its associated damages. Racism is a complex issue, one that has persisted for millennia, and that has left scars that run deep, and I would not dare try to come up with a solution. But absolutely nothing can be done if all we do is sit around and refuse to talk about it, frankly, honestly, with a spirit of sincere love and civility, rather than hurl the term "racist" as a political epithet towards anyone who disagrees. The worst thing that black men and women can do to themselves is decide to sit around and wait for a white liberal government to give them what centuries of institutionalized racism has denied them (for reasons that should be obvious), rather than take it for themselves thru industry, education, and a strengthening of the family.

If blacks are to see an improvement in their communities, in their homes, in their families, and their own lives, it will not happen as the result of protests or rallies. It will not be thanks to corrupt media whores like Al Sharpton or Jesse Jackson. Can anyone provide a rational explanation why they are seemingly viewed as more representative of the modern civil rights movement than men like Bill Cosby? Neither will lasting change occur because of a benevolent dictatorship that treats racial divides and issues like a political game. The Left has no incentive to fix the issue of racism. Why would they when racial animosity is such a useful tool in elections? All the left has to do is absolutely nothing (or in some cases, something that makes things worse) to help black communities, and then blame the opposition for the sorry state that these same communities find themselves in because of Leftist leadership. It is the classic example of the government demanding support and power to fix a problem it caused! Nor does the Left have any incentive to open honest dialogue concerning race in an attempt to weed it out at the root. After all, that just might reveal some of their own biases and prejudices towards blacks, which would ultimately shatter their self-righteous world-view in which only white conservatives are racist (and only black conservatives can be Uncle Toms).

Thomas Paine wrote " What we obtain too cheaply, we esteem too lightly". The Left has deliberately denied the community the integrity and self-esteem that comes with triumph over seemingly insurmountable odds, by perpetuating the myth of the oppressed victim.The only victims are the people who let themselves stay victims. When a victim ceases to view himself as such, and rises above his circumstance, then he is no longer a victim of any sort. We must refuse to be victims, even when there is any kind of truth to the victim narrative. Blacks have suffered at the hands of whites throughout history. By why continue to suffer, if there is another option?

I'm not saying it will be easy, only that it will be worth it. Blacks and whites, Hispanics and Asians, rich and poor, we must all come together to bring to pass a better world. We do that by showing genuine love, even towards those who would hate us, and by becoming self-reliant, and by turning to God. If God is no respecter of persons, why should we be?

Contrary to what we have been taught in high school and the media, it doesnt matter if you are black or white when it comes to success. The Left would have us believe the racist idea that, unlike whites, blacks can do nothing for themselves unless the government is there to take care of them. In other words, the slave-owners of old have just changed the shackles they bind you in. We break those bonds by freeing ourselves from the chains of fear and ignorance. We cannot do that without honest open dialogue that doesnt involve accusing the other side of hate every time they say something we dont agree with. A trademark of racism is the unwillingness to listen to what someone has to say on the matter.

Racism is still a problem. And I think it will be a problem for years to come. Like Dr. King, I long for the day when my children "will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character". It all comes down to wanting something bad enough and being willing to pay the price. Its time to break the chains we have ensnared ourselves with. It is time to discuss, openly, honestly, and humbly, the issues of race, and come up with real solutions. It is time to stop playing the race game.