Unfortunately, the fulcrum of this common ground seems to be religious hypocrisy, political ego and class distinction.
Politically, the divide between the givers and the takers, self imposed partitioned walls between common sense Democrats and Republicans and the extremes of Tea Party Fascist and left wing Socialist have made our almost dysfunctional Democracy a laughing stock in the theater of world politics. But, that could all be resolved if our elected Christian politicians lived by their Golden Rule of charity and giving.
The spirit of giving has its merits and rewards. It’s increasing the value of Macys and probably saving retailer JC Penny from bankruptcy. But there is a difference between the spirit of giving and charity. Those of us, who have, give to the have-nots by donating to the Salvation Army or other charitable organizations. The money is to help the needy, poor, homeless, hungry and less fortunate who can’t help themselves climb out of the desperation of poverty and who somehow slipped through the cracks of a middle-class society into the dregs of the streets and alleys of our metropolis.
Next year, there will be a debate on raising the minimum wage. Currently, the federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour. Nevada’s min. wage is $8.25 per hour. Wealthy businessmen and republicans argue a higher wage will cause layoffs, reduce the workforce, close factories and hurt the economy. Christian republicans want low wages protecting the bottom line of their business cohorts so taxpayers can subsidize their employees with food stamps, health benefits and school lunches. Ironically, it’s the same republicans who argue for the reduction of aid to the same working-poor they created in the first place by opposing the increase of the minimum wage that would remove many workers off of the welfare ledger.
As usual, Christian democrats have the solution. They know the difference between giving a person a livable wage to support themselves and their family without aid from the government and working at a minimal wage needing the charity of the taxpayers.
This Christmas, makes me wonder how a republican can celebrate the spirit of Christmas with a clear conscious. They oppose a person’s freedom to sleep with whom they please. They oppose their own healthcare system fashioned by republican governor Mitt Romney in Massachusetts that works in favor of no system or options at all.
They are opposed to an immigration bill providing any type of forgiveness or leniency for workers who have worked and raised their families in this country. They would have us go to war with Syria or anyone else rather than negotiate, talk and resolve situations peaceably.
This Christmas, we should all pray for republican’s to have more faith in humanity and allow us to manage our own personal lives; hope for the human spirit and peaceful, negotiated future and know the difference between giving workers a livable wage rather than the charity of taxpayers.
David Farside is a Sparks resident and political activist.