Liberals like to think that they are the only compassionate people around and that conservatives care only about the wealthy. There is plenty of evidence to refute that, which I won't go into now, but the Republicans have not, in my opinion, effectively dispelled that notion. This could possibly have repercussions for the upcoming elections.
It's obvious to anyone who has even half a brain that we cannot continue on the current spending spree if we want to survive as a prosperous nation. Cuts, some of them painful, are going to have to be made, if politicians can find their spines. Of course, the Democrats will cry foul and make it sound as if Republicans are cruel and cold. How can Republicans counteract this?
It's human nature to want to get something for nothing. Those of us in touch with reality know that happens very seldom. It's comforting to think that someone will take care of you too, but what's the downside of all this?
Aside from the obvious economic implications of a welfare state, people who are dependent on others for their care and upkeep are in a vulnerable position. I believe that Democrats have a vested interest in keeping more and more people poor and dependent on the government because, after all, they count on their votes to keep them in office. What's a Republican to do?
Let me say clearly and unequivocally that I recognize there are people who truly are unable to take care of themselves because of physical or mental limitations. As a Christian, I feel a moral obligation to help people in need. I have no problem with that. However there are too many families in our society that have been on welfare for generations and way too many people who think the country owes them something. I definitely do have a problem with my tax dollars being used to promote learned helplessness and/or laziness.
This brings me back to my original question: what can Republicans do to counteract this trend? Well, it's time that we had some politicians who talk to us like adults. First, they should outline in a clear and concise fashion how being dependent on the government makes you vulnerable so people understand that having the government take care of you is not a free ride. It actually decreases personal freedom; the dependency makes the government feel as it it has the right to make certain demands.
Second, Republicans should make it very clear that the more people we have in this society of all races and ethnicities who are educated and self-sufficient, the better off our society will be for everyone. If a person receives welfare, then perhaps we should put a limit on how long they may receive it and make it contingent on their getting educated or trained so they can get a good job (assuming they're able-bodied, of course).
Republicans should explain that being independent and self-sufficient produces a variety of benefits. By facing challenges and mastering them we discover true self-esteem and confidence and are free to enjoy the satisfaction that comes with a job well done.