A recent letter to the Editor in a local newspaper got me thinking about welfare vs charity. In the letter the writer quoted one of our federal ministers James Moore as stating “Is it my job to feed my neighbors child? I don’t think so.”’ The letter write disagrees with Mr James Moore’s sentiment. In this letter he quoted the bible and the story of Cain when he asks “am I my brothers keeper”. The writer implies that our government cares more about pipelines than helping the poor and the needy.
Thousands of poor around Canada and the world suffer from want of food, proper housing, clothing and other essentials. We as a culture applaud any government program to help the needy and provide assistance to the poor. Ironically these programs have only furthered a dependency on the welfare state and have stolen from those not on welfare and provided handouts to those who are on welfare or social assistance. A relative of mine once said “I can’t work at a better job because I will loose my government cheque and I don’t want to loose that Income I make more on welfare than if I were to take a better job”. Essential this welfare state paid for by people like me who have had there livelihoods made that much more difficult have been victims of theft to support laziness and dependence on government. This happened in book of Mormon times as well with king Noah. We read about this in Mosiah 11:6 “6 Yea, and thus they were supported in their laziness, and in their idolatry, and in their whoredoms, by the taxes which king Noah had put upon his people; thus did the people labor exceedingly to support iniquity.”
John Taylor (3rd president of the church) has said “there is also another political party, who desire, through the influence of legislation and coercion, to level the world. To say the least; to some it may appear an honorable one, but nevertheless, it is robbery. What right has any private man to take by force the property of another? The laws of all nations would punish such a man as a thief. Would thousands of men engaged in the same business make it more honorable. Certainly not”
This quote aptly describes what is happening in our socialist welfare state. Mosiah 7:15 says changing the word lamanites for federal government so that we can liken it unto our selves “For behold, we are in bondage to the federal government, and are taxed with a tax which is grievous to be borne.” Effectively we are having our hard earned money taken from us without choice via taxes, then they are given to those who “need it” and then we pat our selves on the back talking about how great we are to take care of the poor and needy. Now there are people who honestly are not able to work due to disability or other factors. I have no desire to condemn or judge those individuals. Those who honestly cannot work for various reason, mostly mental or physical limitations we have an responsibility to care for, However care for those who cannot work should first and foremost come from family and friends. Going to the state should be the last resource and ideally should not be needed at all. And those who are quite capable of working with no limitations should not be receiving handouts or charity whether in the form of Employment insurance (which I feel should be a privatized industry) or other programs as these programs do not support working for a living but rather laziness and dependence on the state, effectively handing over the power to the state. Employment insurance like other social programs do not take into account your work history, employ-ability, industry or other factors that would make you more or less employable. Those with poor work ethics, poor job skills, poor employment history and industry’s of high unemployment pay equal premiums as those with strong work ethics, high employ-ability, advanced education and industry with high employment rates. Thus you have the regularly employed paying for the lazy and unemployed by force as employment insurance premiums are mandatory. A Government can get you to be dependent on them then they have control over your life not the other way around. They can then dictate what you will do, when you will do it and how you will live. Sadly we all are paying for this evil notion. And not by choice.
“you must remember that back and behind this whole propaganda of pensions, gratuities and doles to which we are now being subjected is the idea of setting up a socialistic or communistic state, in which the family would disappear, religion would be prescribed and controlled by the state, and we should all become mere creatures of the state, ruled over my ambitious and designing men”
Marion G Romney general conference April 1976
This statement from Marion G Romney sends a clear message and warning that dependence on the state for our welfare is the path to bondage and tyranny from the powers we seem to so freely give to our political leaders. Here in Canada we are a very socialist nation with social programs that we are heavily taxed to support and our political leaders still manage to over spend and burden every tax paying citizen with massive amount of debt.
Stats Canada reports that as of 2007, 6 years ago Canada pension plan alone cost 35.1 billion dollars annually. (http://www41.statcan.gc.ca/2008/3055/ceb3055_002-eng.htm), 31.1 billion for old age security, that works out to over 1,800 dollars a year for every man woman and child in Canada. Or in the case of my family 9,000 annually based on those numbers, if we consider that we get a child tax benefit that would not be needed if we were not taxed so heavily that would amount to support these programs that amounts to 15,120/year for my family is being spent just on these 3 social programs. we are not including the countless others in this country. Going on these numbers and the total of my tax deductions from last year it is costing Canadians over 6,700 dollars annually not including the tax return we receive. We have convinced ourselves that we are doing the right thing. But this has had the effect of fostering dependence on a select few for our well being. We are taxed to the extreme To support programs that give us a dependence on the state for our financial, educational and social welfare. We are then bribed by our politicians with our own money that should not of been taken from us in the first place. We say thank you for giving us money that was not theirs to begin with.
The flip side of the coin is charity. The act of proving service to those in need of our own free will and choice. Charity unlike welfare is not forced on you. Charity is when you impart of your own abundance to those in need without coercion and without hesitation. Charity is where help for the needy should be coming from, not government controlled hand outs by theft from hard working Canadians. Charity not welfare is what will help the poor and needy get out of the circumstances which they are in. Charity does not force from you that which you have to support those that are then dependent on it. Charity promotes self reliance and not dependence.
There are so many good scriptures regarding charity allow me to share some of them with you.
2nd Nephi 26:30 states “30 Behold, the Lord hath forbidden this thing; wherefore, the Lord God hath given a commandment that all men should have charity, which charity is love. And except they should have charity they were nothing. Wherefore, if they should have charity they would not suffer the laborer in Zion to perish.”
Moroni 7:46 “46 Wherefore, my beloved brethren, if ye have not charity, ye are nothing, for charity never faileth. Wherefore, cleave unto charity, which is the greatest of all, for all things must fail—”
1 Corinthians 13:4 ” Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up”
1 Corinthians 13:13 “And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.”
These are just a few of the 56 results you can find on charity at lds.org under the scriptures. Charity is what Christs expects of us, not welfare. Lets work to support charity rather than theft from hard working people and opposed oppression in all its forms. Mosiah has said in chapter 2 vs 14 “14 And even I, myself, have labored with mine own hands that I might serve you, and that ye should not be laden with taxes, and that there should nothing come upon you which was grievous to be borne—and of all these things which I have spoken, ye yourselves are witnesses this day.” May this be so in our lives. Let us labor to help others and have charity rather than being laden with taxes that burden us and hinder us rather than helping us progress. God Bless.