What is it about me that liberals/”progressives” find so threatening?
And they do fear me because they are attempting to stamp out or make illegal most of what I am.
I am a Christian. I believe in God and I believe in apparently arcane things like the Ten Commandments and the Golden Rule. I believe that humans are inherently flawed and to follow the path of Jesus provides the method to overcoming those flaws. What is it about a religion that provides a moral code, yet preaches tolerance and forgiveness that they find is such a threat? What is it about a religion that is totally voluntary and left up to individual acceptance that is such an anathema to them? I don’t understand why my beliefs in Jesus and God are so threatening to the left – other than they represent my allegiance and love of a higher spiritual power that they can’t control and therefore they cannot control me.
I believe in helping those who deserve help and in the spiritual healing that can come through Christian charity. I will devote my time to helping my neighbor herd his cows, repair his fence or build his barn; however, I will not work on his fence or barn in the rain while he takes the afternoon off to watch the Sugar Bowl on TV (this actually happened once when I was a kid – it happened once).
I am a gun owner who has never committed a crime. I’ve never shot anyone, brandished any of my weapons in anger or used them inappropriately. I have never used them to defend my home but until I moved to Scotland, everybody in my neighborhood had guns, so maybe that knowledge kept criminals away. My guns are kept secure from children and people who should not have access to them and I also observe all safety rules when I do use them to legally hunt (yes, I eat what I kill), to practice or to enjoy. By the way, “progressives”, I also own a bow (and am quite proficient with it) and I have a collection of knives to boot…
I believe in the rights guaranteed by the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence. If I look at the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution, I would compare them to a business’ statement of core values (the Declaration) and a mission statement (the Constitution). I believe that these tenets are statements of principle based on natural law and therefore transcendent through time without need for modification or adaptation. They don’t tell us what to do; they tell us how we should do it.
I believe that America was blessed by God as unique in the world and that our founding was based solidly on Judeo-Christian tenets. This does not mean that I believe that every American must be forced to become a Jew or a Christian but it does mean that we should recognize that these tenets are drawn from natural law or as Jefferson wrote, “…the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God…” and Judeo-Christian morality is required for the survival of the Republic.
I believe that any form of coerced, permanent collectivism means the death of freedom because it eliminates the very morality that our country was founded upon. Collectivism substitutes morality with the arbitrary and capricious rules of government. I believe that Hayek was correct in stating that a collectivist system rejects the kind of morality that has built the free Western Civilizations and without morality, the “only tastes which are satisfied are the taste for power as such and the pleasure of being obeyed and of being part of a well-functioning and immensely powerful machine to which everything else must give way”. As we have seen in every collectivist society to date and are glimpsing in America today:
“…the supreme leader who alone determines the ends, his instruments must have no moral convictions of their own. They must, above all, be unreservedly committed to the person of the leader; but next to this the most important thing is that they should be completely unprincipled and literally capable of everything. They must have no ideals of their own which they want to realize; no ideas about right or wrong which might interfere with the intentions of the leader.”
I believe that the people have power over the government, not the converse. I believe as Thomas Jefferson said:
The constitutions of most of our states (and of the United States) assert that all power is inherent in the people; that they may exercise it by themselves; that it is their right and duty to be at all times armed; that they are entitled to freedom of person, freedom of religion, freedom of property and freedom of the press.
I believe in freedom for all. I believe in “freedom of“, as in freedom of opportunity, self-determination, liberty, not “freedom from“, freedom from economic, political and social risk. The former requires minimal regulation and control, the latter requires maximum regulation and control. I wish everyone to experience life to its fullest and on their own terms, I do not want to use government control to protect everybody from life.
I believe that we should work for the common good through voluntary association and not through the forced union through the coercive power of government. I believe I have the right of both freedom of association and the right not to associate.
I believe that everyone has the right to speak but I also believe that I have the right to ignore them.
I do not believe that the sons are burdened with the sins of their fathers. I do not carry the weight of slavery in my DNA simply because I am white. I do not believe that I am guilty of the sin of slavery and I feel no obligation to a black man other than to treat him as an equal. I do not believe in generational guilt because every civilization, including the African tribes that sold their own people into slavery (as well as the white slavers), can be judged as guilty in equal measure. What matters is that we learn from our mistakes and that we move forward toward toward honoring our founding principles.
I do not believe in discrimination by race, creed, color, national origin or sexual preference. I have never in my 30 years in business used any of those criteria in the selection or de-selection for filling a job unless I was forced to by federal law. Businesses do have to take these into consideration – when I worked in Utah, the general population was less than 2% minority and we were constantly harangued by the EEOC and the OFCCP because we didn’t have enough blacks in our business. To satisfy them, we had to run ads in newspapers in major cities knowing that it was highly unlikely that anyone was going to move to Utah for the jobs – but the Kabuki Theater had to be acted.
I am a capitalist. I believe that the transaction that occurs when a buyer is willing to buy and a seller is willing to sell is the most moral and fair way to transact commerce. I believe that capitalism guarantees the rights of the individual to become whatever they have the desire and drive to be. I also believe what F.A. Hayek said is true:
Capitalism is not only a better form of organizing human activity than any deliberate design, any attempt to organize it to satisfy particular preferences, to aim at what people regard as beautiful or pleasant order, but it is also the indispensable condition for just keeping that population alive which exists already in the world. I regard the preservation of what is known as the capitalist system, of the system of free markets and the private ownership of the means of production, as an essential condition of the very survival of mankind.
I believe that it is solely my responsibility to provide for, protect and assist my family; it is not the responsibility of the “collective” to do so. Every village may well have an idiot but it does not take a village to raise a child.
I believe that redistribution of wealth, the abolition of private property and the welfare state kills individual initiative and hope. I do understand that people from time to time need help but the creation of a permanent welfare state breeds a dependent class that will vote themselves a larger and larger share of the pie. I believe that the welfare state is a back-door route to collectivism, servitude and tyranny.
Maybe what they fear is that I am an American.