Leading a Righteous Life


Righteous – Morally good: following religious or moral laws – Merriam Webster

Morality – The differentiation of intentions, decisions, and actions between those that are “good” (or right) and those that are “bad” (or wrong) – Wikipedia

rightvswrong


Is it really hard to do what is right?

In today’s America, I believe most people’s first response would be “it depends.” Within that answer lies the problem. What is good versus bad, and right versus wrong, has become relative.

Not so long ago:

· American’s learned to read from their family Bible. As little as four generations ago, few homes owned more than one book. If it did, that book was the family Bible. The Bible was often displayed, frequently read and shared. Children learned its lessons, stories and morals. Neighbors and school mates shared our sense of right and wrong.

· In the movies and television shows we watched the hero was a good guy who always won, sex and violence were secondary to plot, dialogue and entertainment, the family and self-reliance were celebrated and police, teachers, parents and grandparents were revered.

· Children played outdoors with friends, families stayed together and often shared meals at breakfast and dinner, bad behavior was not condoned and rationalized, public schools were locally accountable and largely reflected community values and priorities. Reading, writing, arithmetic, history, geography and civics were basic skills and knowledge for all 8th grade students!

· Good grades, winning, good grooming, manners, charitable acts, marriage, an honest job and achievement were esteemed and celebrated at home, in school and in the media.

· Individual and family shame was associated with cheating, bankruptcy, divorce and breaking the law.

Is it any wonder why, in today’s America, right versus wrong is relegated to “it depends?”. Many people actually believe that one person’s opinion on right and wrong is as good as any another. The spread of moral relativity has all but removed meaningful boundaries to behavior. Consequences are seldom tied to personal decisions and responsibility but rationalized to circumstances.

Call me a skeptic, but I believe this is no accident.

Since America began the “New Deal” and “The War Against Poverty,” rather than a hand up, these programs have become a handout, and as a war have largely served to destroy the traditional family. Instead of decreasing poverty and want, these programs have increased out-of-wedlock children, divorce, crime and dependence upon the government. The elixir of government spending has proven irresistible.  Politicians, regulators and bureaucrats thrive upon and get reelected base upon its power. Politicians are elected based upon voters dependent upon the government dole. Voters seek more government control and regulation believing that social engineering and judicial discretion trumps self-reliance, individual liberty and founding principles.

America’s most recent generation’s moral compass is broken:

· Answers to important life questions are found through a Google search, blogs and social media.

· The life skills and lessons previously learned on the playground, in after school activities, at family gatherings, at the dinner table and from the experience and wisdom of elders are relegated to and derived from chat rooms and texting.

· Television and video games have become the nanny.

· Late to bed and late to rise has replaced industrious responsibility, chores and volunteerism.

·  The richness of reading the classics has been replaced by the scanning of websites and glimpses of videos.

· High school graduates border on illiterate with substandard reading and math skills with knowledge of history, civics and geography almost nonexistent.

What does this have to do with our 2nd amendment rights? Everything! The ultimate victory for those who seek central government control and power see the disarming of law abiding Americans as the final step in creating a dependent and powerless constituency. Then, self-reliance gives way to dependency. The government becomes the master and we the slaves. Firearms rather than the criminal are portrayed as evil by the media and self-serving politicians.

“Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom. It is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves.”

– William Pitt

Recognizing the current state of America and the destructive forces that have brought about this change calls for action. Above all else – VOTE! Ignore political labels and pseudo party affiliations. Whether a candidate is identified as Republican, Democrat, Libertarian, Independent or Tea Party patriot- vote for those who most truly share your values.

Study the candidates. What is their experience and record of accomplishment? If they speak of job creation and have never managed a business or worked in the private sector – beware! If they never served in the military and speak of support for a strong defense – beware! Do they walk the talk in matters of family, Judeo Christian values and founding principles? If not – beware! Ignore the “party” and vote for those most capable and committed to preserving individual liberty, free markets, the traditional family, State’s rights and a strong national defense.

Often, we don’t have the clear option of a candidate “totally” aligned with our positions. Because you may not have a candidate who you can enthusiastically vote for, choose to enthusiastically cast your vote against the candidate who shares your views the least!

America’s moral compass must be restored, or the very survival of our cherished republic is in question. Our founding fathers understood this all too well.

“[W]e have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. . . . Our constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” 

– John Adams

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