Obama, would you stop picking on the rich people? There are a few rich people I really care about and I don't think it's fair for you to take their money to give to lazy saps who think the government should support them.
Wednesday, July 27, 2011
I believe in a hand up, not a hand out. I believe people have lost the concept of personal responsibility. My parents lived within their means and saved what they could. Mama stayed at home but she worked hard taking care of a house full of other people's kids. They never missed a day of work It was very rare for us to go out to eat. We hung our clothes on a line to dry until I was sixteen.
I watch the MTV show "Teen Mom". One of the girls, Farrah, lost her baby daddy in a car accident before her baby was born. Her big goal this season was to get Social Security to start paying for this girl. Now... Farrah lives in a house much nicer than I'll ever live in. She drives a nice car. She gets paychecks from MTV, she works in a restaurant and her parents appear to be quite comfortable. So far, Social Security has been declined because they can't prove paternity... but I'm sure there are a lot more teen moms out there who are getting SS or other assistance just because they chose to bring a child into the world that they couldn't support.
I got pregnant at 17. I got myself a job with health insurance and I paid the way for my baby. My baby daddy married me and got a job himself. I didn't go running for handouts. I wasn't raised that way. Heck, I probably didn't know they existed because that was not the culture I was raised in. I took care of what was mine.
My kids' dad moved out when they were 13, 9 and 5. I went back to work. I lived with my parents and then they helped me buy the trailer. I probably qualified for a lot of stuff, I probably could have gotten government housing and food stamps and everything else but I wasn't looking for a handout. I took my responsibility seriously. I still do.
When I left Jacksonville with a shattered heart, I got myself out, found a place to live, found a job and got my baby back in my nest as quickly as possible. I could have made a case for social security disability based on my mental state at that time but I didn't. I slept on an air mattress for a month because we didn't have beds. The grace of God and the generosity of friends and family helped sustain us.
I have granulomas - scar tissue in my lungs that make me highly susceptible to respiratory diseases. My official diagnosis is COPD. I have degenerative disc disease, osteoarthritis in my spine and now, I haven't mentioned, I have it in my hands and feet as well. I have spinal stenosis, spondylolisthesis - spinal instability which cause back pain to the extent that I can barely walk at times. I could make a good case for disability... it might take a year or two to get it approved but I could. Instead, I get up every day and go to work to earn my own living and I will as long as I can.
When fire forced us out of our nest, I had two weeks available to spend in a luxurious cabin of my choice courtesy of my renters insurance. We stayed 3 days and moved into our new nest even though it meant that Austin had to sleep on the floor for a week. Red Cross could have been called for us. Instead our church family, cyber family and earthly family helped us. I could have taken that opportunity to give up and just go home to mama and daddy and end the daily painful struggle. Instead I found a place, moved in and have little by little feathered my nest.
Three kids... I raised with child support and visitation as unreliable as my old car was at the time. We lived without a lot of things. I worked hard and did what I could to give my kids the best life I can. I still do. As the insurance money has come in I have replaced Austin's things first. I could have taken the money to buy other things but his loss hurts me deeper than my loss.
I'm not saying this to brag on myself. I don't consider any of these superhuman amazing feats, I consider these things the LEAST I can do. I was raised that I am responsible to take care of my own. I've had help, don't get me wrong, but I've had help from family, friends, church family - in other words - community. A community of love that saw my needs and gave me a hand UP, not a hand out.
Our problem as a nation is very simple: we have lost our sense of community. We have raised a generation that holds less value to a human life due to legislation that was passed telling them so. We have raised a generation that doesn't take care of their own. We have raised a generation of people dependent on government assistance who make babies who make other babies before they are financially able to support them. We have forgotten to live within our means as individuals and buy more than we can afford. We give money away to countries who hate us. We have so much financial waste that it is shameful. We have a congress that is full of men (and women) who don't have the courage to stop the waste and stop the handouts and insist that our country live within it's means because they know that they will not be re-elected if they do this. We are a Robin Hood society - take from the rich and give to the poor.
Rich people are our friends. They work hard for their money. Every time I hear something about a tax increase I think about my brother who during the lean years in college decided he didn't want to struggle again... so he studied hard, went to law school, studied hard again, got a great job and works his rear off every day to earn a good living, rich by Obama's standards. He puts in a lot of 12 hour days and 7 day weeks to earn what he has. My brother deserves to keep his money. He's not greedy, he's frugal. He irons his own shirts. He lives responsibly. He made a choice that any of us could make to change the course of our lives. Yes, there are exceptions but trust me... what he has didn't come from a trust fund or handouts. Nor should what he makes go to handouts.
The truth is that I will, unless God heals me, end up physically unable to work at some point, likely before a normal retirement age. Until that day, I will do the best I can to earn what I can and take care of my own and contribute to society. And when it happens, I will choose the most comfortable nest from among my family members and become a burden on them. (I'm kidding, I hope)
I thank God for being raised in a culture of giving, not taking. My life has not been easy. We've done without a lot of things that others take for granted. BUT I also know that what others have that I don't have... they have because they worked hard and earned it. I don't have a right to what they have. To take what you haven't earned, isn't that stealing?
End of political soapbox for the day. It's whiny Wednesday so that's my rant. God is good. I am blessed. I've got a good lead on an affordable washer and dryer... I had prayed that I would have it by the weekend and I feel like that's not going to be the case. I'm going to do a load or two at Jim and Angie's to get us by and just keep praying for God to show me what we need to do. God has a plan... whether it's finding a nest or feathering my nest...
I felt a little greedy and spoiled when I prayed for a washer and dryer because there are so many people in this world who are living without food or clean water or a pillow for their head. But I know that God placed me in a society that requires proper hygiene... and I know that He knows the limits of my ability to carry laundry away from our house to wash. I believe that He is intimately involved in every detail of my life and I also know that I have worked hard and earned these luxuries... and they are, you know.
Have a great Wednesday and ... hug a rich person today.
Posted by Heather at 5:34 AM