So I'm listening to National Public Radio today (yes, I know, that was my first mistake) and they were talking about the great many people who have been rendered without a home due to current financial problems tied to the current economic mess (read, "depression") that we're in.
They were interviewing individuals and families and informing listeners of their plight. At one point, I began to wonder if I could, and logistically how I could, help out a family should I encounter one that had indeed lost its home and found itself with no place to sleep. I began wondering how long a family of three or four could abide in the Mead Hall should the opportunity and need be presented.
Then I hear from one unfortunate mother how exactly that had happened to her. She had been staying with a family who had enountered them out in the cold and had taken them in. I was rather touched to hear it and felt all the more that doing anything I could would be the right thing to do.
Until the NPR reporter mentioned that this woman was, in fact, in the country illegally.
But the reporter wasn't making an issue of the fact that this woman was here illegally -- no. In fact, it was only brought up to point out that it was difficult for this woman to obtain public assistance: food stamps, welfare, subsidized housing, etc.
At that point, my empathy was replaced by justifiable anger with this woman, with NPR, and with our system of government.
In order to try and complete this posting without swearing or sounding like a raving lunatic, allow me please to make my point by virtue of analogy:
Let's say you encounter me at a party at a private club of which you are a paying member, or perhaps at a wedding reception that you are hosting. You find that, due to some physical limitation, I am unable to reach the hor'd ourves table. You feel pity on me and you help me out by offering me a tray of treats. You help me move around the room, cut my meat, and offer to buy me a drink.
Then you find out that I'm not a member of the club or that I wasn't invited to the wedding. What's more, I'm there with my three kids. We're not just helping ourselves to the refreshments that are provided to the guests, but you, my friend, had in part paid for these refreshments.
Do you still feel the same pity that you had before?
Well, I for one don't. I feel robbed. And more than that, I feel outraged that the bartender, whose salary I pay, has been working to keep these party-crashers from being thrown out on their asses or has refrained from calling the cops like should be done because these party-crashers might vote for him later if he doesn't.
I'm trying to keep calm right now, but it's getting increasingly harder. In fact, my increasing discontent (to be very euphemistic) is what has kept me from posting to this blog more often than I have lately.
I'm very angry at the unprecedented levels of my income and my assets that are being taken by force from me a citizen and being handed over to criminals who have hopped a fence or to companies and individuals that have proven incapable of proper stewardship of their own income and assets.
I am very close to rebellion.