“The government has failed all of us. It’s got to stop.” – Gina Martin, Cited in AP.
Two years after hurricane Katrina devastated the Gulf Coast, the area is still in a state of disarray with recovery taking place more slowly than many displaced residents would like. Two years after hurricane Katrina people are still blaming the government for all the problems that resulted from the storm and their choice to live in an area at risk of being wiped out by such a storm.
This isn’t a new thing. Before, during, and after the hurricane people set themselves up for failure and disaster by sitting back and waiting for the government to come and save them. There were cries of, “Where are all the government buses to get us to the Superdome”; heaven forbid we go on our own. “There was not enough food and water for all of us when we got there”; we shouldn’t have to bring our own supplies. “Why didn’t you pick me up off that roof before I got sun burned?”; perhaps you should have left the city on your own instead of waiting for Uncle Sam or your local government to bail you out. “Why haven’t you given me money to rebuild?”; maybe it’s not such a good idea to live there if you can’t afford good insurance. “The government has failed us”; maybe you need to stop being so dependent on the government to bail you out.
Hurricane Katrina was a horrible tragedy that no one deserved to go through. However, it served to amplify a growing culture of dependence upon the government to come and save us/bail us out whenever hard times hit. The government of this country was not founded to prop people up and create dependency. The founding fathers never envisioned a nation where the people were dependent of the government for so much.
The point is, the more control over our lives that we turn over to the government, the more we make ourselves dependent on outside sources, the worse off we are. We should turn to the government only as a last resort. They should not be our mommies that we run to whenever we scrape our knees. People used to take pride in making it on their own, in being independent. Today, we have given up most of our independence to the government and to personal debt.
I think we would be better off if we got back to the idea that all we have to rely on is our faith, our families, our friends, and ourselves. Those are the things that will help us when we are going through hard times. For us to become so dependent on government is to lose site of what it means to be an American.