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SLAVERY OR RESPONSIBILITY?
by M. Sidney Wallace, ©2012, blogging at Gulf1
(Dec. 1, 2012) — I had the opportunity to re-read Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address over Thanksgiving. Using this historical document as a pattern I have written a short epistle that seems to be appropriate.
Two hundred twenty five years ago representatives of the thirteen original colonies of the new world gathered to create a workable form of government for a new nation. These representatives created the Constitution of the United States. The original document was not perfect and required ten basic amendments to make it acceptable to a majority of the colonies. Over the following years there were other amendments added in an attempt to make the Constitution a more insightful document for the nation. President Abraham Lincoln said the Constitution brought forth a new nation conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.
Nowhere in the original Constitution, nor any of its amendments does it suggest that one man is responsible for the well being of his fellow man. Each man or woman is considered equal and under the Constitution of the United States has the liberty to achieve happiness in any legal way they choose.
We are now engaged in a great social war, testing whether the United States will survive as a nation. As I write this epistle, and you reflect upon the words, keep in mind that we are both on the battlefield in that war. I shed a small tear not for myself because I have lived a full and happy life enjoying the fruits of my labors in the way I saw fit. I have never taken or asked for any help from the United States government, but I have been able to achieve every dream because I had the liberty to choose what was best for me and my family. The small tear I shed is for younger children who will suffer the most because they will never have the liberty to make choices for themselves.
Just as President Lincoln said in his Gettysburg Address “ we can not dedicate – we can not consecrate – we can not hallow this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled, here, have consecrated it far above our poor power to add or detract.”
The names of the men and women who struggled to build a life in a new land are far too many to list. They were the men that explored the great western mountain ranges in the 1790’s. They were the men (both Americans and Mexicans who wanted freedom) on the ramparts of the Alamo in 1836. They were the men like Ira Hayes, a man of the Pima Indian tribe who risk his life to help raise the American flag on Iwo Jima during World War II. They are the men and women who have lost life and limb in foreign wars attempting to carry liberty to nations that do not understand its meaning.
Now we have another individual occupying the office of President. This individual desires to make everyone equal in the name of fairness. He wants to redistribute anything of value that one man earns for himself to another for simply breathing. The world will little note, nor long remember, what I say here, but can never forget what independent Americans have accomplished on their own.
Abraham Lincoln said, “ It is for us, the living, rather to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they have, thus far, so nobly carried on. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us – that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they here gave the last full measure of devotion – that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain; that this nation shall have a new birth of freedom; and that this government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”
The two alternatives are clear. To live in Obama’s world of personal slavery and a declining America, or personal responsibility and freedom on your own? I have made my choice. Have you?