from – The Hill – by Dan Weber
Our nation’s moral fiber – the nation’s history of sacrifice for others, high standards of respect for human rights worldwide, generosity of spirit, and sense of personal accountability for our action – sometimes clashes viscerally with what we see around us. Collectively, those who have spent their long lives defending this country and those timeless American values, are often reduced to silence by behaviors we see growing common. There must be a way to turn this around. This reflection suggests one.
The list of dismaying behaviors on the rise is long, but they all turn chiefly on loss of respect for human life, for our common humanity. Older Americans see it in callous comments by insensible and unplugged leaders, often unaware of the history that has brought them to power. Our nation has 50 states, not 57. Our hand goes to our heart at Arlington because we love those who loved us. Our salute is tight, and enduring, because it represents something enduring – our love of country, ideals and each other. Now, look where we are today.
We see indifference to human life in random shootings of every sort, and in national inaction on issues like childhood drug abuse, family dysfunction, the role of small business people in our communities, and spiraling intergenerational debt. Most recently, we see a profound moral indifference in the graphic, incontrovertible videos that show Americans dismembering the little bodies of viable babies or fetuses to sell their limbs for money. And we see the United States Congress, somehow and without the heart or depth to say no, funding the very organization that is, rather unrepentantly, responsible for such a tragedy.
Perhaps more than any other recent outrage, but at least as much as any other, this cold, recurring act by those who pretend compassion is arresting. It makes the blood run cold, literally and figuratively. The actions of Planned Parenthood, so called, are both hard to understand and horrific. They grate on the way we think of ourselves as Americans and they awaken in us a sense of needing to speak out, and to seek action.
Recent events place a new onus on Congress – and on all of us. They argue strongly for ending, now and forever, federal taxpayer funding for a group – any group – that would act so coldly and immorally, without either quiver of conscience or apparent call to contrition. Far from helping to “plan parenthood,” this organization appears to be profiting both from termination of young life that would make someone a parent, and the grotesque resale of body parts. It causes pause just to utter the facts.
So what can we do, beyond continuing to urge a study of American history as it really is, and a more clear understanding of the moral depth that this country has long prided itself on? We can do several things, all minor but perhaps also important. First, we can urge Congress not to spend the hard earned tax dollars collected from Americans, old and young, rural and urban, on the kinds of organizations which will knowingly and arrogantly abuse our good will and sully our moral fiber.
Every tax dollar matters, and comes from some hard working American. We have a right to ask that they not be spent on acts which, almost by definition, undermine who we are as a loving, moral and historically caring people.
Second, we must think bigger – and longer – than we often do. We must think on this issue about being “pro-life,” not as a slogan but as a matter of habit and of who we are. We should be less anti-each other and more for each other, for our neighbors and their families, for our country as a moral and redemptive place, and for life – young, old and unborn. Because if we are not for life, who are we? If we are not for the future and preserving it, one child at a time, what future will there be? Let us dig deep and re-find our better angels, and then celebrate our love of life – as Americans.
Weber is president of AMAC, an American seniors organization with more than a million members and a strong conservative following in all 50 states.