Can We Govern Ourselves?

I am struck by the outbreaks of violence world-wide.  London, Lybia, Syria, Spain, Greece, and even China have had mass protests turning violent in the last few days.  That, of course, leaves out our own beloved Philadelphia.  The British response is remarkably restrained.  It took them several days to decide to use water cannons and rubber bullets.  Reportedly the sale of baseball bats went up. (In the United States we had a rush of gun sales after the ’08 elections as we anticipated the coming dissolution of the social contract.  The Second Amendment is a wonderful source of behavioral restraint.)  I think it begs the question, can freedom and democracy exist in an amoral world?  For most of us, we don’t riot and loot other people’s stuff because we are morally restrained from so doing.  Your neighbors are safe from you because you are not a thief or a thug.  I don’t hurt people because it is wrong to do so.  The police do not have to shoot me with plastic bullets to dissuade me; my parents and my God have implanted a conscience that keeps me relatively civil.  The values that enable us to live free include personal responsibility, respect for life,  respect for private property, and a sense of moral absolutes.  I am convinced that freedom as we understand it is only possible in a society that is predominantly peopled by Christians and folks who share that world-view. The debate about the separation of Church and state can be reserved for another time.  Our problems stem from a separation of Church and men.

Just a thought


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