My Point of View: Country’s Judeo-Christian heritage helped shape most prosperous nation in history

Published 8:45 pm Tuesday, May 21, 2024

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My Point of View by Brad Kramer

In my previous column, the topic was taxes and how dehumanizing it is to spend as much of our lives as we do feeding the state an endless stream of our hard-earned income. Most families require two incomes just to live modestly, and this robs us of the ability to live our lives unburdened by excess taxation.

Brad Kramer

In his Feb. 6 column, DFL writer Joe Pacovsky lamented the rise of Christian nationalism. He rings the alarm bells lamenting how Christians are, in his view, trying to force a Christian-run state. Our Judeo-Christian heritage helped us build the strongest and most prosperous nation in history. America’s system recognizing the nuclear family, law and order, education, health care and much more, all came from our Judeo-Christian heritage. The view that all people are made in the image of their Creator led to being the first civilized nation to abolish slavery. In his narrow view, simply having Christian lawmakers who believe in the sanctity of life and individual liberty is a harrowing, unacceptable ordeal.

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Did you know that the hospital systems we enjoy today were invented by Christianity (Catholicism specifically)? Mayo Clinic was founded by the Mayo brothers and run by the Catholic nuns in Rochester. It existed to care for people, not to make money, but as an act of compassion. I’ve known many health care providers over the years who became healers to care for broken people. They rarely join this noble profession because they love billing insurance companies and continually improving the efficiency of the system at the peril of the patient. When Mayo passed from being a Christian institution to a (“nonprofit”) corporation, so too, did it pass from being about caring for the sick, to making money and gaining market position, with a brigade of administrators making six-figures rather than nuns who took vows of poverty and had compassion for the sick.

Our universities were born from Christianity to help us pass on and advance knowledge. From Christian universities like Oxford, Cambridge and Harvard, countless young adults were challenged to think and learn under the framework of Christianity. Many of today’s universities are as far from that objective as possible. I have two degrees, and neither is displayed. I would be better served by hanging up my invoices to remind me how much I spent learning to play the college system.

In previous centuries, it was the role of many religious orders, such as the Dominicans and Poor Claires, to care for the sick and downtrodden. People cared for their neighbors. During the Great Depression, it was the practice to “go on the town” when someone was so impoverished they needed help, so they would go before the city council and ask for help from their neighbors. While at first glance, it sounds cruel and dehumanizing, it was just the opposite. This was before the inhumane practice of welfare. Earlier in life, I was at times poor (by American standards), growing up with a mother perpetually on welfare and at times on welfare as a young father myself. The endless forms and the hoops that the social workers made us jump through, all while knowing that when my income increased and passed that precarious amount that would eliminate the benefits, while still not providing my family enough to pay the bills, meant welfare was a hard trap to escape, often trapping families for generations. Most Republicans agree that we need a responsible social safety net to help people in need. However, with so many social services out there to pay for every want, need and whim that people have, for everything from transitional surgeries to cellphones, we often walk right past our neighbors who are in need, partially because we’re so overburdened paying taxes that we have little left to expend on exhibiting humanity, instead delegating the job to an endless, expensive and inefficient hierarchy of bureaucrats and social workers.

Maybe if we allowed people to keep their hard-earned tax-dollars so they didn’t have to slave away, inhumanely paying for a bloated state, we might come back to a society where we can again personally care for the broken, help our neighbors, build universities that educate rather than indoctrinate and contribute to hospitals that exist to care for the sick rather than balance sheets and market share.

While the Republican Party can hardly be called the official Christian party because we’re made up of millions of Americans across a spectrum of beliefs and backgrounds, it is the party platform that most closely holds dear the sanctity of life, protecting individual liberties, supporting law and order, defending the nuclear family, practicing fiscal responsibility and preserving our Judeo-Christian and American heritage. We’re not perfect, but a far better alternative compared to the murderous communists the DFL has aligned with.

Brad Kramer is a member of the Freeborn County GOP Party.