Posted to my Facebook page October 12, 2013 at 5:28pm
On one thread, a former employee who worked with me helping homeless families.
The other thread, a formerly homeless mom that I've gotten to know quite well.
My former employee, hard-working, mother and a decent person.
My mom-friend, a hard-working stay-at-home single mother and a decent person.
The difference? Poverty, opportunity (or lack thereof) and perspective, for starters.
My former employee is evidently listening to the gospel of prosperity in one of its many forms, perhaps designed to encourage people to reach their full potential, thus eschewing dependence on government system, relying on God.
My mom-friend is being ravaged by the reality of poverty and bureaucratic dysfunction keeping her from life-saving surgery for cancer. Insurance-less, she's being denied the surgery she needs because she doesn't have the $13,000 to cover the procedure she desperately needs.
The argument against dependence on a system is valid--as far as it goes. People need to be encouraged to be independent, some need the nudge more than others. However, I don't believe that everyone all the time can avoid the system. And God is, was, and ever shall be distorted by human condition.
In some cases, lacking a personal support network, when the rug gets pulled out from under you by any number of disastrous experiences that can befall any of us at any time, you may need help. Or when you have no where to go but up, and no way to scale the slippery walls surrounding you, lacking a miracle, you'll perish. From what I've seen, miracles are in short supply for too many deserving, unfortunate souls.
In this case, my mom-friend is being told her life is worth nothing by virtue of inaccessible health care. She's been told she makes too much (child support) to qualify for Obamacare coverage.
In my opinion, the hoopla over Obamacare has fueled the disdain of the poor, not to mention a government shutdown, among other things. The haves are looking down on the have-nots, and in this case, the systemic looking down is depriving millions of babies, children, teens and adults of what they need most to live, much less thrive.
Implying that government is bad and people become dependent on hand-outs is a popular position. For religious leaders to preach it is, in my mind, holy malpractice. If this is what their congregations are hearing, then the preachers need a reality check.
I'm not sticking up for government across the board. Plenty is wrong with the way it's been going for a long time. But to toss government out...well...I'm just not sure that Jesus, or any other spiritual force, will be coming down in time to save the imperiled...like my mom-friend who needs surgery NOW.
Have we gotten to a point where we're even more isolated, using church walls to block out society's dysfunction and to separate believers from the undeserving? Inspiring others to reach for the gold and disdain the broken will accomplish just what the puppet-masters seek--total anarchy among the masses.
Whether or not anyone has thought through what this means is a valid concern. The blatant disregard of humanity --and our responsibility for ourselves and others--will bring about a whole new world...far weirder than I can even imagine. For my mom-friend, it very much means her children will lose their mother.
But thinking seems to be in short supply during this crisis of confidence in our elected officials. And we'll all pay the price.