January 31, 2014 5:43 AM

Our modern tragedy: We'd rather kill people than save them

She died where she lived: at the bus stop. Willie Mae White loved to dance. She told stories about her boyfriends. She treated everyone with kindness. She was homeless. On Tuesday, White froze to death at the Joliet, Illinois bus stop she called home. She was 55 years old…. “She doesn’t have to worry about being cold anymore,” an acquaintance, Audrey Laye, told the Herald-News. Living on the streets is dangerous any time of year, but that’s especially true when temperatures dip below freezing. In this past week, as a cold front swept through the Midwest and Northeast, at least five homeless people have died from the cold.

I can think of little that illustrates what’s wrong with America more than the idea that people can freeze to death in the most prosperous and powerful country in the world. Willie Mae White froze to death because she was poor and powerless and no one cared enough to give her shelter. Think about that for a moment. We live in a country that can spend literally trillions of dollars on two far-flung wars, yet the idea of spending millions or perhaps even a few billion to take care of our own is beyond the pale. We devote truly obscene amounts of money and resources to killing people around the world, yet we reject the idea of spending even a small percentage of that on caring for Americans in need.

There’s nothing that could possibly justify allowing five Americans to freeze to death. Somewhere along the line, we CHOSE to ignore the needs of people like Willie Mae White. Whether it was because we thought someone else would do it, we decided that we weren’t going to give her a handout (that would promote dependence), or that we simply just don’t care, allowing people to freeze to death is wrong.

It’s not socialism to take care of our own. Ensuring that those at the lower end of the socioeconomic scale don’t freeze to death during a harsh winter isn’t giving people handouts or encouraging dependence on government. It’s not creeping socialism. Compassion is not weakness, nor is the social contract an abstract concept best left for losers and Liberals. If we can’t find it within ourselves to care for our own, what claim do we really have to ANYTHING resembling humanity? If our primary motivation is self-interest at the expense of all else, then we’ve lost that humanity.

We’ve somehow managed to evolve into a society that values the means and methods for destroying human life far more than anything that could be used for saving it. We could have saved Willie Mae White for far less than what we spend destroying people and property in distant lands.

What’s happened to us that’s caused us to view lending a helping hand as the harbinger of creeping socialism?

We’re better than this…aren’t we??

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This page contains a single entry by Jack Cluth published on January 31, 2014 5:43 AM.

There's no problem this country faces that can't be fixed with more guns...amiright?? was the previous entry in this blog.

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