Passing The Buck

Talk to any one person for just a few passing moments and you will likely be able to discern their poilitical and philosophical leanings based off of their answers to simple questions about current events. In my view, this is a sad commentary about where we have come in our society. Too often people are placed into one category or another without truly exploring how they came to that point of view. In this post I wish to explore our National consciousness and how we came to our point of view.

A few months ago, I heard my daughter exclaim, "Look Daddy, I did it ALL BY MYSELF!" I walked into the kitchen to see that she had written her entire alphabet in the form of a circle on her dry erase easel. She was so proud, as was I, that she accomplished this feat on her own, without any help.

Her mother had been working with her on her alphabet for as long as I can remember.  As parents, it was fulfilling to see our three year old child be able to do something that, frankly, some children older cannot do. Our children are like little sponges soaking all the good and the bad that we display for them.

There is a deeper meaning here as well. It seems to be in our nature, as displayed by our children, a yearning to be independent, to take pride in that achievement that is truly our own. But where has this spirit gone? Where did we learn to pass the buck? As I look out in our society I feel that the individual spirit of achievement has been squelched. Every time I turn on the TV (which is less often than ever nowadays) it seems that there is always someone complaining that 'somebody' needs to fix 'it' so that people don't have to 'worry' about something. There are in existence today Government programs that provide food, clothing, housing, transportation, and even cell phones. I certainly do not believe that people that truly need help should not receive some sort of assistance, but it seems that we have lost even the desire to achieve without being subsidized.

People also seem willing to sue at the drop of a hat more than ever as well. Just this week in Cabell County, WV the school system has decided to remove all swingsets from the Elementary schools due to the fear of being sued. Now the Federal Government is going to sue a State Government over immigration law, all the while one of our Interstate Highways has been deemed too dangerous to travel due to the illegal activity along the southern border.

So how does it happen? Where along the maturing process do we lose that exciting spirit of achievement and self-sufficiency? Why do we have teenagers and young adults with no work ethic? For that matter, why do we have seniors with no work ethic? Why are we deeply in debt as a country and as a citizenry? With the recent economic recession and housing crash, we found out the hard way what happens when people are deeply in debt with no cash reserves.  Yet, instead of looking inward to seek out the root cause of the issue, we seek to find someone to blame and then someone else to ride in on a white horse to save us from our own stupidity.

My wife and I have made foolish choices over the last few years. Those choices have cost us everything except our children and our marriage. We have started again from nothing with nothing. We will rebuild our lives. The process has already begun. Surely we would both love to able to go back and make different choices, but we can't. We have to start where we are. We will do it with God's help. We will do it without the Government's help. We made this mess and we will clean it up. Until America is willing to sacrifice something today in order to have something of  greater value tomorrow, our future will be tainted by the mistakes of yesterday. There is no political party, no left, no right, no earthly savior that is going to make our future success a reality. We need to lean on principle. We need to seek out common sense, individual solutions to the problems we face. Keep in mind that this country's freedom was won by a weak, untrained, and sparsely funded military - a military that beat down the strongest, most well-funded army on the planet at the time. They started with nothing and achieved great things on principle. Those same principles of independence and freedom are still applicable today. It just takes the will to start. Ready...set...GO!
Posted on September 2, 2010 .