I have a little story to share:
Once upon a time there was a neighborhood with several children residing in it. Jimmy was an industrious little boy who wanted to earn a few dollars and he experimented with a variety of jobs: a newspaper route, a lemonade stand, door-to-door sales, garage sales, etc. Finally, he started his own yard maintenance business and it took off. Pretty soon he had a nice collection of regular customers and his college fund began to grow. He had plans for his future.
Jimmy had a few friends who watched him closely. Sally was inspired by his initiative and tried her own hand at setting up a little stand where she sold crafts, cookies, and other trinkets. She didn’t do too bad at this or babysitting and was able to set aside a few dollars. But at the time of this particular telling of the story her business wasn’t quite as successful as Jimmy’s, perhaps because she hasn’t been at it for as long as Jimmy has. Tom, on the other hand, applauded his friends’ industriousness but had no motivation himself. He preferred to play video games and munch on snacks during his free time.
Enter Cliff. Cliff came from another town and was a few years older than our main characters. He observed Jimmy’s business savvy mind and Sally’s willingness to learn and apply from her friend. But when he saw Tom’s carefree attitude, Cliff sensed oppportunity. He began to befriend Tom and Sally and when the moment presented itself he put his plot into action. “Sally, I don’t think it’s fair that Jimmy doesn’t share some of his success with you.” “What do you mean, Cliff? Jimmy’s a good friend and has inspired me.” “Inspire you?” scoffed Cliff. “He should share some of his money with you. He sees how hard you work! Why should he keep it all to himself?” Sally hesitated. “But I haven’t been at my job for as long as Jimmy has. He is there when I need him, but he has plans for his money. I don’t think he should have to give it to me just because I’m not making as much as he is.”
Cliff then turned to Tom. “And you, Tom! You don’t have anything! If Jimmy and Sally really cared about you they would give some of their wealth to you. It’s not fair for you to have 2 successful friends and you don’t have anything!” Tom started to disagree, but then nodded in assent. “You’re right,” he agreed. “I am a good friend to them. It’s my right to have some money too. They have some. Why shouldn’t they give it to me!” Sally looked startled. “But Tom! You don’t do anything during your free time and Jimmy and I work hard for what we have. We’ll support you if you want to try a business but we shouldn’t have to just hand over our money to you!” Cliff grinned as he saw Tom ignore Sally and start to ponder the suggestion that was now planted in his mind. Here was someone Cliff could control.
OK. I’m sure you see where I’m going with this. This is similar to what’s happening in our beloved America – the land where the American Dream states anyone can achieve what they put their minds to and work hard for. It’s that Dream that built our country. We have long been industrial, technological, ideological, and academic leaders in the world because our people were willing to work hard with nothing to stop them. It’s no longer that way.
Today our young people are buying the lie that the wealthy are the enemy because they have more than all the rest of us. They believe that the wealth should be spread around so that everyone has their fair share. What they don’t remember anymore is that what each person works for is their fair share. If I work hard for my salary than it is my right to decide how it is distributed. No one has the right to force me to give it away, nor does the government have the right to tax more than is reasonable for the proper maintenance of the country. If one business is not as successful as another, why do we punish the successful one through increased taxation? If one man does not work, than poverty is the wage he earned.
If financial success is rewarded with heavy taxation the American Dream will die and capitalism will be replaced with socialism. It may sound trendy to say that all wealth should be eqully distributed and everyone should have their fair share, but the ones distributing the wealth will always believe that their fair share is a little more than what the general populace receives.
Yes, I believe people should receive a just wage for their efforts. That wage may be an empty belly for the man who doesn’t work or a million dollar bonus for the CEO of a successful company. Fair does not always mean equal and the painful lesson is usually the quickest one learned. Young Americans need to give hard work the credit that it is due.