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One of the biggest perversions of big government is when it presumes to take over family roles and responsibility. No matter how much money it spends, big government simply cannot write a check to provide the love, security, acceptance, or nurturing available in family. So, why does it try? Individuals who make up big government are ‘normal’ in that they all have some kind of family experience entitling them to opinions on what are “good” or “bad” family values; but as an institution, big government is handicapped. It should not “establish” a religion, it should not distribute public funds as charity, and most of them go home at 4:30! Still, voters expect big government to provide a ‘safety net’ when there is human tragedy caused by dysfunctional families. Even if government meddling is sourced in noble motivation, it becomes destructive when it presumes to meddle in the affairs of functioning families.
There is too much evidence of inappropriate government intrusion:
- over-aggressive control of parental education choices;
- over-compassionate distribution of health and welfare benefits; and
- over-protective removal of children from their parent’s influence.
It is not difficult to imagine how noble intentions of big-spending government are ultimately overplayed, but it becomes very difficult to then eliminate or reduce any inappropriate control of ‘nanny’ government.
It is tragic folly when the governed actually believe the government should fill-in when family fails. Secular government is simply not capable of either replacing or repairing families. Families, on the other hand, are the only source of the elements of good government (wise and principled future governors, legislators, and judges).
We are approaching our traditional holiday season. Let’s determine to make them family holidays by focusing on choosing to be thankful in the tradition of Thanksgiving, and to be compassionate and giving to those around us in the tradition of Christmas. Let’s return to the premise families primarily exists to produce and nurture children. The holidays provide the perfect opportunity to enjoy our spouses, children, and grandchildren while giving them foundational family memories – and in Alaska, often our friends become our family. It’s also a good time to look around for those who don’t live in a functioning family and include them in your family benefits. Again, the government won’t/can’t provide much outside of some physical needs.
If you are a parent, it is your inherent right and responsibility to choose the values you want to teach your children. You get to select the truths you want your children to know and how they build the foundation to your beliefs about God and religion and our constitution. It is not up to the government to be a nanny for us, our children, or our friends.
This was also submitted as an article to The People’s Paper.