Tuesday, November 17, 2009

The Disconnect

My wife and I delivered some coats and things to an event where poor and/or homeless people come to get coats and a meal in a local park. I happened to meet a person there who if you'll remember had gotten quite caustic with me on Facebook when I decried her gloating over killing the health bill. She had demanded that I list everything I had done to help the poor to make me prove that I was better than (or maybe as good as) her in doing such things. I flatly refused and she she tore me up, calling me a hypocrite and laying down insults in her status updates. Remember, this was because I wouldn't tell her, not because I had nothing to tell, just because I wouldn't. She insulted liberals, me, and even one of her friends who agreed with me that bragging about our works was not appropriate.

Of course I believe that the work she does with the poor is admirable, but I can't help but think about the disconnect that this demonstrates to me. And forget that I think she's a poor example of a Christian. It just seem strange to me to outwardly be so generous, but inwardly be so caustic. To give coats to poor people and yet vote for measures and representatives who will make more poor people.

Now I know of course that she will disagree and say that I am the one who is making more poor people, but tell me, who's favorite representatives are for free trade which allows us to ship the jobs to other countries?

I'm under no delusion about the ramifications of what I believe. If my goals were enacted, it would absolutely make some people poorer, the rich ones. I believe in progressive tax policy which readjusts the distribution of wealth to a greater proportion of the population. If I can provide health care to the poor on the backs of the rich, I'll do it. No man is an island. No man becomes a millionaire without someone else doing a bunch of the work.

But, my goals and beliefs are consistent. I advocate for a tax policy that distributes the wealth more evenly among the classes, and I also advocate for the disadvantaged. I don't help the poor and then actively advance policies that will swell their ranks.

It's not productive.

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