Letter to the Editor: A primary duty of our government: Promote general welfare


Recent letters to the editor have asserted that the policies of the Republican Party make a mockery of many Biblical principles. I am astonished by the efforts of some GOP apologists to rationalize those policies. They argue that the tenets of Christianity govern only individuals and do not apply to governments.

The actions of the Congressional Republicans suggest they are governed by this theory. They would shred the safety net constructed over many years to assist the poor and less fortunate. They reject any tax increases for the super-rich while the disparity between them and the rest of us in wealth and income grows ever wider.

But I, and I’d guess most people, including Republicans, don’t accept this cynical theory. Most people have a highly developed sense of right and wrong – often formed through their religious training and experience. I doubt whether they switch it on and off, depending on what and who they may be involved with.

Many, notwithstanding class, race, party, or creed, contribute for charitable purposes. It’s clear that it’s not nearly enough. Why else are millions of our children living in poverty, millions without adequate food, and millions without decent (or any) health care. Don’t generally accepted principles demand that the government – in effect, the rest of us – do its best to fill this void?

The conservatives – and particularly the tea partiers – like to lecture us on the Constitution. Have you ever heard them mention that one of the primary duties of government is “to promote the general welfare”? It’s in the preamble to the Constitution. Doesn’t it mean something?

Bob Lowerre, Woodstock