Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Civilizations have two choices

Civilizations have two choices.  They can either sacrifice for the future or they can sacrifice the future.  There is no middle ground.

A healthy civilization is one that embraces children for the future.  Children are an investment in the future.  A civilization pours its hopes and dreams into their children.  When a civilization focuses on its kids, the civilization shows that it wants to continue into the future.  A civilization that prides itself on its children is a civilization with a future.

A healthy civilization knows its neighbors.  It builds communities and creates personal networks that work toward the common future.  It holds the natural rights of others as something to be pursued and cherished.    

Civilizations are healthy when they plan for the future of their children.  They live within their means attempting to put their children into a more stable future.  They impart morals to their children to direct them to focus on their children's future.  They teach discipline, virtue, and prudence.

A healthy civilization is one that values personal and community responsibility.  It recognizes the need to participate in the needs of their fellow man in a personal way.  It recognizes the direct responsibility of each and every citizen and respects that responsibility rather than relegating it to a few empowered individuals.

A civilization that is not healthy sacrifices its future for short term gratification.  It does not impart the values of self-sacrifice but calls for others to sacrifice on its behalf.  It attempts to avoid responsibility whenever possible.

An unhealthy civilization aborts its children, or attempts to avoid having them entirely.  It regards children as a token of self fulfillment at best and a disease and plague at worst.  It attempts to euthanize the old, to avoid having to adhere to the wisdom of the past and to avoid the reminder that all things in this life are transient.

An unhealthy civilization does not live within its means.  It racks up huge amounts of personal and public debt to live a life at the expense of the future.  It abandons the virtues and sense of personal responsibility or outsources it to charities or the state.    

An unhealthy society fears its neighbors.  It does not know the person down the street and mistrusts anyone who disagrees with them.  It seeks to deprive the natural rights of others out of fear that the neighbor will misuse them.  In turn, the neighbor who works to deprive such rights are distrusted.

Which kind of civilization are we?  The question is left as an exercise to the reader.

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