From the very beginning the liberal notion that I was responsible for my brother, through the government, placed in jeopardy the concept of private property. Liberty was placed at odds with collectivism, though few really saw that paradigm when it flushed through my generation on high school and college campuses. But it has been there always.
The primary difference between a conservative and liberal is not about “we are our brothers’ keeper.” It is about how we manifest that Christian belief. For liberals it is used to build government, and the decisions and philosophies that were made or created to manifest this philosophy, through an all-powerful government, destroys the very Christianity that is responsible for the foundation of “we are out brothers’ keeper.” For conservatives, manifestation of this value is much more personal, independent of any coercion and practiced primarily through a person’s faith and church. The practice of this value is completely voluntary as is the belief of Christ.
In many respects the imposition of the Great Society and the welfare state is a violation of the First Amendment, the free practice of one’s religion. Since the concept of “we are our brothers’ keeper” is religious in nature, the imposition of that value through the forced seizure of personal property is an imposition of faith through government. And if the liberals argue that my assertion is nonsense, that their welfare state is based on secular humanism, the same is still true. Secular Humanism is a “faith” so once again it is imposing a “faith” through government to seize property and is still un-Constitutional.
AMERICANS KNOW that America was a place for people to go to live their lives free from government interference. Our heritage begins with limited government, limited in its power and limited in our expectations of it. We want it to do what it was formed to do; secure borders, jail criminals, regulate trade between the states and conduct a foreign policy free of entangling alliances. According to the liberals, on both sides of the aisle, those limitations are in the past, not relevant to today. Things have changed and we must change with it.
From my point of view, if that is their position, then “the contract” (the Constitution) has been broken. I will not be forced to live with a broken contract and accept their version of what is possible. I believe in the original American dream, and I believe it is timeless. I believe the American dream was based on Christianity and God and that He is timeless. I do not believe I should be forced to surrender private property to fund programs and philosophies contrary to the original Constitution, or to Christianity.
What is so disappointing is that all of what is wrong with America, all of the contradictions, all of the strife, all of the chaos we face and the final economic collapse coming were predictable in the 1960s and before. We knew, conservatives knew and pointed out the consequences of the liberals’ policies and plans. We knew the appetite of government was and is insatiable. We knew the problems and issues would be endless. And we knew that no matter how much private property they took, no matter how much they spent, the problems would NOT be resolved. There is no Spirit in the government, God has been chased out. Therefore no matter what is done, it is done without God and cannot succeed.
If there is a true conservative movement in America it must be based on Christianity. Christianity and God cannot be in the closet in a true conservative movement, but must be at its forefront. We cannot pretend that because we love God, our policies will be perfect. But, we can know that our policies will be designed to invite God back into our nation, to rely on Him for solution and resolve. If neoconservatives, libertarians or other so called conservatives cannot accept God’s role in governance, than we cannot accept them in a new Christian Conservative party.
There are only two ways out of our present condition. One is to continue on the course we presently hold and lose our sovereignty and place as a nation. The second way is to go back to the beginning, where the American Dream, and American Way were created.
For those who have not read my articles before, (America Today at www.nolanchart.com ) or who don’t want to search through them to find the history Christianity and the American government, I point you to The Christian Life and Character of the Civil Institutions of the United States, by Benjamin Moore, published during the great American Civil War in 1864. It is here, through 1000 pages, you can be introduced to the Christian founding of America and God’s original place in governing our nation.
Mark Vogl is a resident of the Latch community in Upshur County.