Get PJ Media on your Apple

The Gate Called Beautiful – How Common-Sense Compassion Heals

Increasing dependence is not compassionate.

by
Janine Turner

Bio

December 3, 2013 - 10:59 pm
Page 1 of 2  Next ->   View as Single Page

ACTS 3 2 Now a man who was lame from birth was being carried to the temple gate called Beautiful, where he was put every day to beg from those going into the temple courts. 3 When he saw Peter and John about to enter, he asked them for money. 4 Peter looked straight at him, as did John. Then Peter said, “Look at us!” 5 So the man gave them his attention, expecting to get something from them.6 Then Peter said, “Silver or gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk.” 7 Taking him by the right hand, he helped him up, and instantly the man’s feet and ankles became strong. 8 He jumped to his feet and began to walk. Then he went with them into the temple courts, walking and jumping, and praising God. 9 When all the people saw him walking and praising God, 10 they recognized him as the same man who used to sit begging at the temple gate called Beautiful, and they were filled with wonder and amazement at what had happened to him.

A lame, dependent man was begging for money. This unfortunate man thought that money was the only answer for his particular plight. Peter and John looked at the vulnerable man. They saw his situation. They asked the troubled man to look at them — to see another way. Peter told him that they had no money to give him but that they had something even better to offer: a healing — a way for him to find his own peace, his own money. The man was willing and he gave his attention to Peter and John who, through the power of Christ, healed him. Peter and John provided a way for him to walk on his own two feet. He rose and started jumping and praising God. It was Beautiful.

The healing power of God is the obvious message. However, upon reflection there is a both a secular and political application.

Today, historic numbers of people are on food stamps. According to PolicyMic.com:

2013 has seen a surge in the use of food stamps which are now at historical records. Currently, a record 47.8 million Americans are enrolled in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). Enrollment in SNAP has increased 70% since 2008 and currently, an unbelievable 15 out of every 100 Americans are on food stamps.

Consequently, the U.S. spent a record $74.6 billion (slightly less than the combined budgets of the Department of Homeland Security and the Justice Department) on the SNAP program in 2012 alone. That expense has more than doubled since the start of the “Great Recession,” increasing $40 billion dollars since 2008 ($34.6 billion).

There are two political perspectives as to how to handle this problem. The Republicans, the Libertarians, and the constitutionalists want people to have the opportunity, the knowledge, and the tools to independently seek the gate called Beautiful. They believe this can only be done with a limited government that abides by the enumerated powers in the U.S. Constitution.

The Democrats and liberals want to hand out government money in order to convince vulnerable people that dependence on big government is the answer. The trap is set and the weak are caught. The gate called Beautiful is shut.

The media, the culture, and the president tell the vulnerable people, and all Americans, that it is not only socially acceptable but a social responsibility to rely on the government. Yet polls indicate that Americans are angry and unhappy with the government. They are unhappy because this trend in America not only goes against the independent nature of all Americans; it also goes against their moral compass.

Americans do best when they help one another find their way to the gate called Beautiful. Americans are happier when the government stays out of the way. However, the current popular, knee-jerk reaction is for the moral compass to point toward the government as the healer of all societies ills, and those who want big government perpetuate this myth.

Comments are closed.

Top Rated Comments   
I think the main problem is that even some Christian charities have gotten lazy on government handouts and tax exemption. Once you accept governement funding you are obliged to tow the PC line. Christian charities would be stronger in the long run by foregoing any kind of government assistance and will have to give up tax exemption to stay free. Even that may not save them. The last step may be to go underground.
33 weeks ago
33 weeks ago Link To Comment
Coerced compassion isn't compassion. It's coercion.
33 weeks ago
33 weeks ago Link To Comment
At the very least, the able-bodied should be required to do some work in exchange for government handouts. Existing without working destroys people psychologically.
33 weeks ago
33 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (16)
All Comments   (16)
Sort: Newest Oldest Top Rated
You wrote as I quoted that you want people reading your column to rise up as anti-progressives and denounce, in an effective manner, government dependency. You want them heard by the perplexed, dependent vulnerables who have been propagandized that only Democrat politicians care about the poor.
You can accomplish this.
Just put an anti-progressive on your staff, as a volunteer.
Then in your repeated emails to your supporters, provide means for us to contact that fellow soul – that anti-progressive.
Please open that door your staff has slammed shut since you began your radio show, and use this column as an excuse to finally overrule your staff.
Let your staff continue barring you from doing anything they deem risky regarding helping this nation. But give anti-progressives a single staffer, a volunteer, to whom they can go rather than to the rest of your staff. You would be amazed what your staff has barred you from seeing, let alone helping. You send us emails inviting us to contact you, and then your staff blocks us and censors us. Give us someone who will say, yes, I want Janine Turner to help this nation, so I will pass on your suggestion so she can consider it if she wants to do so.
If we cannot even reach you, how do you expect the entire nation to hear us? On your show we would be heard - every anti-progressive among us who your new staffer would let you consider putting on your show.
You should add to your column since you quote Acts 3: Because He died, many with faith could do what Peter and John did. We don’t have that in this nation. Unlock your show, and not only will you possibly save this nation politically as you seek in this column, you might permit a revival which will include healings like the one you cite. We just need one staffer we can reach, who wants what you want. She can be a volunteer.
If prayer says post this, I will.

33 weeks ago
33 weeks ago Link To Comment
First I want to highlight two paragraphs from your column, since they are powerful. Quoting you about midway through:
Thus, urgent is the call for the anti-progressives to rise up, get loud, and be law-abiding, respectful rebels. It is time for politicians, and citizens, to grab the megaphone and shout out the truth about the ills of government dependency. Knowledge is power and reason is vital. The anti-Democrats need to make their message clear, crisp, loud and pervasive because those who are perplexed, dependent, unhappy and angry are only hearing the propaganda machine of the liberal elites.
The vulnerables are taught by these elites that Republicans are cold and heartless regarding those who are suffering monetarily. They are constantly bombarded with deceptive imagery about the Democrats, depicting them as warm, big-hearted and compassionate. Yet the “D” in Democrat stands for Dependence.
33 weeks ago
33 weeks ago Link To Comment
Apostle: "Rise up and walk!"
Conservative: "Here's a couple of shekels for you."
Liberal: "I hereby declare War on Lameness!"
33 weeks ago
33 weeks ago Link To Comment
If you want to get rid of government mandated welfare, you have to allow poor people to live poor. You can't be starving or out on the curb in three meals or less. If Peter and John not happened upon the lame man, he could continue begging, but our government doesn't allow that. Our society doesn't allow that. Decide what you want, but remember that the poor continue to exist. They can work and strive to improve their lot, but you have to let them breathe first.......
33 weeks ago
33 weeks ago Link To Comment
In order to mess with the societal moral compass you would have to wage a war on morals....oh, wait. The ongoing war against Judeo-Christian principles is the main barrier to the Progs attaining their Marxist utopia.
33 weeks ago
33 weeks ago Link To Comment
Post Your Comment Here There is an unwritten agreement that governs welfare. That contract says that the government will support those who are poor and cannot support them selves as well as those who are able to work with the assumption that those who can work will try to become employed. That contract has broken down as those on welfare prefer to stay on welfare for generation after generation. When the government allows people to stay on welfare generation after generation, they are enabling people to be slothful which is a sin. Any person who advocates payment to the poor with no expectation of the able poor trying to better their situation is actually committing a sin by enabling them. Paul wrote about this in his 2 Thessalonians and he was mighty angry at them for maintaining this attitude while claiming it was consistent with the teachings of Jesus.
33 weeks ago
33 weeks ago Link To Comment
It's because being on welfare or other assistance doesn't suck enough to deter it's use. It has become, by design, an acceptable alternative to working and responsibility for one's actions.
33 weeks ago
33 weeks ago Link To Comment
"There is an unwritten agreement that governs welfare. That contract says that the government will support those who are poor and cannot support them selves as well as those who are able to work with the assumption that those who can work will try to become employed. "

That "contract" is the result of a very bad idea - that charity is a proper role of government.


There is no right way to do welfare that involves government. There is no amount of tweaking that can be done, no amount of reformation that can take place, to make government 'charity' a good thing.

It's fundamentally wrong. It cannot be fixed. It must be eliminated.

Only then can REAL charity can flourish.

33 weeks ago
33 weeks ago Link To Comment
I wouldn't say we've lost control of charity - it's been wrested from us. Through crushing layers of taxes and fees Christians have less disposable cash to tithe and give to charity.

So what do we have left? Why, our time, of course. Except the leftists recognizing a threat to their control of the huddled masses have started to shut down those avenues, as well. In many cities it's illegal to give food to the poor. In many states it's illegal to speak of God in soup kitchens.

Crushing fees and regulations are shutting down entire operations. School regulations have banned bake sales due to health and safety concerns. County and state fairs are being stripped down or being eliminated altogther for safety and insurance concerns.

In other words, every avenue of community cooperation and social interaction is being curtailed, ruined or banned altogether by the many tenticled reach of big government statists who view human interaction with one another as a threat to their control.
33 weeks ago
33 weeks ago Link To Comment
I think the main problem is that even some Christian charities have gotten lazy on government handouts and tax exemption. Once you accept governement funding you are obliged to tow the PC line. Christian charities would be stronger in the long run by foregoing any kind of government assistance and will have to give up tax exemption to stay free. Even that may not save them. The last step may be to go underground.
33 weeks ago
33 weeks ago Link To Comment
Coerced compassion isn't compassion. It's coercion.
33 weeks ago
33 weeks ago Link To Comment
At the very least, the able-bodied should be required to do some work in exchange for government handouts. Existing without working destroys people psychologically.
33 weeks ago
33 weeks ago Link To Comment
A good post that addresses the realities of human strengths and weaknesses, and also how the nature of reality itself affects each.

Generally speaking, one gets the sense that prior to, say, 1960, American culture was born both from the harsh nature of reality, our easy recognition of that, and our passing the lessons of a failure to address that reality onto our children, i.e. education, hard work, personal responsibility, discipline. At the other end of laziness was stark failure, which was its own motivation to a culture still in intense daily contact with reality, especially if you were something like a farmer. This was called common sense.

If you didn't work you didn't eat, a thing we recognize today in a more abstract sense than ever before, though it surely still motivates people.

In countries without social safety nets and the harsh competition of great populations, it shouldn't come as a surprise that their families value education and a trade more than we do, such as is the case in India and China. Probably the only thing that keeps those countries from doing much better than they are globally is the lack of native innovation that would truly cash in on that discipline; what they study they largely can't and didn't create.

When one reads biographies of successful Americans throughout the last century, what stands out time and again is a dedication to educating themselves in a single trade, whether it was science, painting or business. Much more often than not, they went into situations cold, without an ability to network, knowing no one. As with reality, their ticket to success, their letter of introduction, was their own competence. This is called a meritocracy. It is no surprise liberals despise that word, since the tough love reality itself dispenses is despised, as is reality itself.

Blame, complaint and self-pity together with mysterious systemic mechanisms that oppress people is the favored topic today, not a recognition that there is such a thing as simple failure brought on by individuals or their cultural value system.

Liberals may find the GOP "cold and heartless," but it is reality itself that is so, and the GOP a holdover from the days of simple common sense that recognized water is wet, as opposed to insane people now treated as "normal" who claim they are neither men nor women. Liberals are detached from reality and it is no surprise they attract an electorate that wishes to smear their own failings onto others using endless explanations and excuses.

The wrong kind of compassion can destroy a civilization.
33 weeks ago
33 weeks ago Link To Comment
".....In countries without social safety nets and the harsh competition of great populations, it shouldn't come as a surprise that their families value education and a trade more than we do, such as is the case in India and China. Probably the only thing that keeps those countries from doing much better than they are globally is the lack of native innovation that would truly cash in on that discipline; what they study they largely can't and didn't create........"

They also don't have impossible zoning and building regulations and recognise that poor people are poor. They can live within their means and still have a place to somewhat call their own and not be rousted hither and yon by whomever and whatever having a snit about it.......

I'll say it - bring back the slums.........

A lot of this welfarist garbage got going because slums were considered aesthetically horrible or something. No real concern for the impoverished, just that it showed a progressive nation up poor, is all....'>......
33 weeks ago
33 weeks ago Link To Comment
The War Against Poverty and urban renewal were carried out with the same dishonesty and self-delusion as the Affordable Care Act.......
33 weeks ago
33 weeks ago Link To Comment
The name "War Against Poverty" makes it seem like poverty can be eliminated. It can't - not in a capitalist system, not in a socialist system.

But leftists have convinced themselves (I guess) that they can socially-engineer poverty completely away. That is a massive, unrealistic, quixotic project.

But I think leftists thrive on being involved in massive, unrealist, quixotic projects. It's romantic. Heroic. It motivates them in a way that small, limited, reality-based projects do not. They don't want to help the poor - they want to Change the World so that everyone's rich. Excelsior!

If I were "selling" a welfare state to myself, I would pitch it like this: "We want to create a system that will give money to poor people so they won't be cold, hungry, sick, and ignorant. We're not trying to make your life more complicated. We just want to help people, same as a church or any other charity." I would sell it as a humanitarian cause.

Trouble is, I don't know if that's what our entitlement system is really trying to do. Its purpose (to me, anyway) is hidden beneath layers of political and sociological rhetoric.

If we're going to have government "charity," I want it to be as simple and understandable as when I give a homeless man a couple of bucks or drop an Elmo doll in the Toys for Tots bin. Somebody needs something, I'm helping them get it. I don't need all the "change the world" BS.
33 weeks ago
33 weeks ago Link To Comment
View All