Recently, I find myself reacting the most to the progressive social justice movement. Social justice, “often employed by the political left to describe a society with a greater degree of economic egalitarianism, which may be achieved through progressive taxation, income redistribution, or property redistribution” (Social justice, n.d., para. 2), is a political push towards socialism. I do not view this movement as socially responsible, and I will explain why.
I was a high school student during the Clinton presidency, and when he announced a national rebate based on the federal surplus of tax dollars. Though I believe the economic boon was due to comprehensive reforms under President Reagan, I will give President Clinton credit for maintaining it as long as he did. It was at this point that I decided that I needed to understand politics and economics in a way that would allow me to make more responsible choices as a voter. Since then, I have watched as Presidents Clinton, Bush, and Obama have squandered our money for their supporting political allies, forsaking the people of the United States.
I had considered myself a Democrat until I took the time to understand the simplistic nature of economics. Obviously disagreeing with left-wing politics, I analyzed the right and found much more of the same waste, fraud, deceit, and callousness in the Republican party. I found that I had to understand my own values before I could vote again. My values are much more in line with the libertarian philosophy that once made this country great. Libertarianism is about freedom, freedom to make choices, freedom to succeed, and most importantly, freedom to fail. For failure is the greatest teacher and motivator.
The United States is heading for a disastrous economic climate where millions of people who rely on government subsidy will find themselves without benefit. Government-subsidized social programs, such as welfare, Medicare, et al., are meant to be stop-gap measures designed to temporarily fix problems to extend the time available to find more permanent solutions. For welfare, short-term use precludes this necessity, but abuse assures the programs demise.
The greater social responsibility is understanding that as a member of our great society, and in order to help many, we need to support the survival of our society. This means that we, the individuals, need to be self-sufficient. This means that we, the communities, need to be self-sufficient. This means that we, the states, need to be self-sufficient. This means that the next larger government is there to help the next lower government recover from the unforseeable. As individuals, we need to rely on ourselves, our families, our neighbors, and our community before asking for a hand-out from the state, and we should never have to ask for hand-outs from the federal government.
This post may seem like political ideologue drivel, but I assure the reader that it is not. Some, like the author of our class text, would have you wave a sign for the sake of political or environmental activity (Loeb, 2010, p. 10), but I argue that if we all minded our own homes with such conviction, then no one would dare stand up to advocate diminishing us as people. So long as an action benefits society, it is socially responsible. And, I am socially responsible.
Loeb, P. R. (2010). Soul of a citizen (2nd ed.). New York, NY: St. Martin’s Griffin.
Social justice. (n.d.). In Webster’s online dictionary. Retrieved from http://www.websters-online-dictionary.org/definitions/Social+Justice