brotherpeacemaker

It's about our community and our spirituality!

A Strong Federal Government

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Just in case you haven’t heard political conservatives hate the idea of a strong central government. It is the political conservative’s theory that a strong central government will choke the life out of the economy and out of people. A federal government that takes an interest in our lives is a government that is pushing its people into some form of dreaded socialism or communism. The political conservative is more likely to argue that the state and local governments are much more capable for responding to the needs of the people. We don’t need the federal government telling people what to do.

There are a few exceptions to this rule. Political conservatives think it’s the federal government’s responsibility to force people to adhere to a strict definition of marriage where none ever existed before. The federal government should step front and center to deny women the right to obtain an abortion. The federal government should also force our local schools to teach children to past rigorous standardized tests instead of letting our schools teach children how to read, write, and do arithmetic. The federal government should keep us from smoking marijuana. And the federal government is really good for protecting America with a strong military budget with more zeroes than a Sarah Palin for President rally. But other than that kind of stuff the federal government is better left seen and not heard.

But when it comes to the black community, a strong federal government is much more favorable than a federal government that works to dodge its responsibilities in our social construct. Throughout history, when the federal government has been at odds with the local and state governments as far as issues pertaining to the black community, it has been the federal government that has championed the type of social progression that works to make the black community stronger.

With each and every step for equality, individual states had to be forced literally at gunpoint to get with the new program. While the civil war may not have been directly related to the enslavement of black people issue, the black community ought to be pretty happy that it was a strong federal government that won that war. Our lot in life would have been greatly different if the southern states had gotten their way. And throughout the struggle of the civil rights movement, some states resisted most vociferously forcing the federal government to federalize the national guard and threaten Governors with federal arrest if they did not stand aside and let black children enter schools and become students.

A weakened federal government does not appear interested in protecting black people or the civil rights of the black community. One of the weakest federal governments with respect to social issues in modern history has got to be the administration of former President George W. Bush. While Mr. Bush was quick to point an accusatory finger at his family’s nemesis Saddam Hussein, Mr. Bush was in charge of a hapless effort to protect the people of New Orleans after hurricane Katrina and was woefully incompetent in the effort to restore so many Katrina ravaged communities. The fact that many of these ravaged communities have a higher than average percentage of black people is not a coincidence I’m sure.

And it is also no coincidence that the most egregious manifestation of the federal government’s inability to serve the national collective in a socially conscious manner appears to suffer whenever someone is running the government who thinks social responsibility is passé.

Ronald Regan, the great communicator of the Republican Party, was wrong. The best thing the government can do for its people is not get out of the way. Most people don’t realize that government is the people. We the people are the government. And when people are in need, when there is a crisis that impacts a good sized portion of the population, the government of the people, by the people, and for the people should step forward to assure that the people recover.

If a government is a reflection of its population then a strong national government is nothing more than a strong national collective of people. The only way a government can be in the way is when a government refuses to step forward and do what is in the national community’s best interest. Rarely is it in our best interest to let a segment of our population suffer in its troubles. Nobody should know this better than a black community that has benefited from a strong national government. Collectively speaking it is in our best interest to make sure we remember that fact.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009 - Posted by | African Americans, Black Community, Life, Politics, Thoughts

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