Yesterday, the twitter-sphere blew up with articles and videos of Mitt Romney’s secret confession about the #47percent. As he described,
There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. All right, there are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it. That that’s an entitlement. And the government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president no matter what…And so my job is not to worry about those people. I’ll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives.
Imagine: I watch Romney’s video and I’m furious honestly. He clearly is dismissing an entire population of people and attempting to justify his falling poll numbers in a conclusion that 47% of Americans wouldn’t vote for him any way because they are dependents of the state. Instantly, I think to myself what is the role of our government if it is not to take care of those citizens who are in need. In my opinion, there is nothing wrong with our government helping the poor and suffering. If our government ignores those individuals who are unable to afford housing, food and clothing – the necessities – then what is the point of our government. Who are they taking care of? Maybe Romney thinks our government’s job isn’t to take care of anyone and let the poor and downtrodden struggle until they… well I don’t know… disappear?
The role of government got me thinking about the bible verse “For everyone to whom much is given, of him shall much be required” (Luke 12:48). Conservative Christian and Evangelicals and liberal Christian can all agree that God has blessed the United States. We are the one of the most powerful nations in the world with an immense amount of wealth. I’m not saying the USA is perfect; we definitely have our problems. But because we have experienced so much success and wealth, we are in a position where our country has the ability to take care of those who do need help. As John the Baptist says in Luke 3:11, “Let the man with two tunics share with him who has none, and let him who has food do likewise.”
A couple hours later on twitter in the mist of all this #47percent brouhaha, @catholicdems posted a verse from Proverbs 31: 8-9, “Open your mouth in behalf of mute, & for the rights of destitute; Open your mouth, judge justly, defend needy & poor!” I thought to myself, “Yo, that’s it.” That’s our politicians role, that our government’s role, that’s our society’s role – to speak up on behalf of those who are marginalized and need our help.
Romney says it is not his job to worry about these people. But it is. It’s all of our job.
Follow me on twitter @jaranathan