Letters to the Editor

Don't encourage handout culture

Issac Bailey, you have disturbed me.

I was born the last child to a family of five. My father was a Baptist minister and the closest thing to a pure of heart Christian. He never made much money, but he did shepherd a large number of church families to spiritual health over his lifetime. He ministered love, character, honesty and responsibility. He prepared us for the reality that we should not expect to be given anything. Work hard for the best things to happen in your life. Be satisfied and happy at each level of your life journey. Be charitable and tithe to your church.

My wife and I have passed his wisdom on to our children who, at this stage in their young adult lives, are progressing very well. We are proud but fearful. I stress to them that their mother and I have worked for and earned anything we have. We will share our success with them until we cannot, but that the most valuable thing we pass on to them is the skill of a productive and creative life that fulfills individual passion, but, importantly, also pays for material needs.

I am troubled that in your recent columns, Mr. Bailey, it seems you are promoting an ideology that the U.S. government should provide for the needs of each of us. It flies in the face of everything this country has stood for since our forefathers wrote our Constitution. We are on a dangerous slippery path with this perverted idea of "fairness." This is not about politics, it is about entitlement culture.

I admire you as are a unique and intelligent gentleman who believes what you write. I also assume that you have earned all you own and all that you have found success through personal hard work. I believe you deserve to keep what you have earned. Conversely, I sincerely hope you are smart enough not to promote the lesson to your children, as well as your readers, that the state, not personal achievement, provides for our needs, and not from hard work, honest productivity, and personal accountability.

When you give your support to a utopian society that gives handouts you are influencing all who read you to "relax" and wait for a check. Logic and math require that we must connect the financial dots to furnish equal health care for all. Simply ignoring the realities of cost for this enormous program is naive. Taking from the "haves" and redistributing to the "have-nots" by mandate of the government conflicts with the spirit of the Constitution.

Each of us is frustrated with the debacle of the broken system. Indigence is a fact of life, much of it not the fault of the individual. As Americans, we should work together to establish more free clinics, perhaps using medical students, altruistic doctors, nurses and church saints. Private insurers should sell across state lines to keep competitive rates. Doctors should be protected from enormous and ridiculous malpractice judgments. America should encourage corporate charities that support the common effort. Americans are the most generous people in the world.

But if government simply uses the power of law to hijack already thin profits from business with draconian taxes and mandates, the impetus of profit will be removed.

The writer lives in Myrtle Beach.