So, today in my political science class, one of the many flavors of youth decided to chime in with some ever informative wisdom. The topic was the President's bullet points for the budget, one of which being the promotion of "social compassion" and "family values." The aforementioned expert on all things government says "That's wrong, the government can't legislate 'family values.' That's just Bush trying to push his Christian values on everyone." Ok, fair enough point. He doesn't want the government stepping in and promoting family values as he doesn't believe it is their place. Fine.
About five minutes later, the subject of welfare and poverty came up, and this same student says "It's so wrong that the government doesn't step in and do more for the poor. We're fighting a war but we can't get people jobs." Now, I'm not the smartest guy in the world, so I'm wondering if I am missing something here. In my mind (however twisted it may be), there seems to be a serious disconnect with this logic. On the one hand, the government shouldn't meddle in people's business, and on the other, it should step in and fix everything. Gotcha.
When described like this, it seems quite contrite, but the fact is, this is actually right along the lines with how a large number of people think. I am just throwing this out there in case there is someone reading who thinks that I am maybe missing something. I understand that there is a point where government involvement can go overboard (Cuba, I'm looking in your direction), and there is also a point where it can be totally absent (anyone know if Haiti is for sale on the open market, yet?). However, the middle ground is obviously something that people are only willing to go to for issues that they feel passionately about. I really admire people that feel convicted about a subject, as long as they are willing to see it through. Yet this is often not the case. More times than not, tunnel vision sets in and it becomes difficult to relate separate issue to one another (e.g. the rise of global warming and a lack of legalized prostitution. Think about it).
The overall point being (in addition to my question of me possibly missing something here), is that if I am not, then how do people miss the connection? How do people not see that the redistribution of wealth leads to complacency? Why do they not see that lack of response to threats leads to more tragedy down the road? And why, oh why, do people think that Shakespeare is relevant at all? I mean seriously, that stuff is wickedly boring and... oh, different topic.
Anyway, just a few afternoon thoughts.