In September 2009, Dr. Starner Jones of Jackson, MS, wrote a letter to the editor of the Clarion Ledger. In that letter, Dr. Jones identified a cultural crisis that is rampant throughout this country. I believe that crisis is rooted in an erosion of traditional family values and the disintegration of our public education system into a political-cultural propaganda machine.
In September 2009, Dr. Starner Jones of Jackson, MS, wrote a letter to the editor of the Clarion Ledger:
During my last night's shift in the ER, I had the pleasure of evaluating a patient with a shiny new gold tooth, multiple elaborate tattoos, a very expensive brand of tennis shoes and a new cellular telephone equipped with her favorite R&B tune for a ringtone. Glancing over the chart, one could not help noticing her payer status: Medicaid. She smokes more than one costly pack of cigarettes every day and, somehow, still has money to buy beer.
And our Congress expects me to pay for this woman's health care? Our nation's health care crisis is not a shortage of quality hospitals, doctors, or nurses. It is a crisis of culture -- a culture in which it is perfectly acceptable to spend money on vices while refusing to take care of one's self or, heaven forbid, purchase health insurance. It is a culture based on the irresponsible credo that "I can do whatever I want to because someone else will always take care of me". Life is really not that hard. Most of us reap what we sow.
Don't you agree?
Starner Jones, MD
Dr. Jones identifiers a cultural crisis that is rampant throughout this country. It is a crisis rooted in the erosion of traditional family values and the disintegration of our public education system into a political-cultural propaganda machine.
Some have criticized Dr. Jones as essentially being "right-wing" or "mean-spirited" or "uncaring" and being too judgmental about the habits of other people. And those trying to rebut Jones' letter frequently focused on excusing the poor habits of the patient to which he referred in his letter as being merely "poor choices" in their life.
These critics completely missed Jones' point. Jones was not criticizing the patient so much as he was criticizing our culture for enabling and facilitating such behavior at no risk to the individual indulging in those habits! It is the liberal/progressive notion that responsible people must assume the burden of caring for the irresponsible, at any cost, that has Jones and many others righteously outraged.
The Left's refusal to acknowledge Jones' obvious intent and then demonizing him for his astute observation by impugning inappropriate motivations to him is an all too typical reaction of the intolerant Left. What the Left cannot achieve through rational discussion, they try to achieve through name-calling and assigning false motives, essentially recasting their opponents by misrepresenting their opponents' positions so that they can assail characteristics of their opponents that they have manufactured out of thin air! This is an alternate reaction to the Left's frequent "change the subject" or "turn tail and run off in a snit" reactions.
What are rational people to do when confronted by these tactics of the Left? Give up?
Frankly, the Left employs these tactics for two reasons: (1) because they cannot sustain an intellectual argument on the merits, and, (2) because they want to intimidate their opposition to keep quiet. Neither of these is a laudable strategy. Yet it's done all the time because the established information media are overwhelmingly sympathetic to the Left.
An example is the posting at Snopes.com when you search for "Starner Jones, MD". You will see that the letter was genuine. But Snopes.com (known for it's Left-leaning tendencies) feels compelled to toss in a rebuttal letter that appeared shortly afterward in which an angry woman ("I've been stewing ...") provides a perfect illustration of the mischaracterization strategy described above.
Our public education system has been slowly evolving to a propaganda operation in which a relative handful of elites who control textbook content have reshaped education to dumb down the American public. No longer is early American history emphasized. No longer is our Constitution analyzed and discussed. Even books like "U.S. Constitution For Dummies" and "The Complete Idiot's Guide to the US Constitution" actually do more to corrupt knowledge than enhance it. Just go into any library (or bookstore) and browse through those books while looking for clarification of the "general welfare" clause in Article 1, Section 8. You will find support for the contemporary rewriting of our Constitution that is completely inappropriate and distorts the obvious original intent for what was expected to be a limiting clause, not an excuse to govern without limits (as "general welfare" has become).
Fortunately, serious students have the Federalist Papers, authored by James Madison ("Father of our Constitution"), Alexander Hamilton, and John Jay, each of whom contributed to the drafting of our Constitution. Leave books like the "Dummies" and "Idiots" guide to those who prefer to be indoctrinated as dummies and idiots.
This pervasive propagandizing throughout our culture is what has produced this "anything goes" mentality where adverse consequences are always someone else's responsibility to alleviate. This new "culture" is founded on the notion that words like "responsibility" and "discipline" are four-letter words with which the newly "enlightened" among us need not concern themselves.
And whenever anyone points that out, simply fire back at them with charges of "mean-spiritedness" and "judgementalism" and other barbs in the bag of oratorical ammunition carried around by the Left.
What to do about it?
Be good friends, parents, family members. Help those you know to better understand our nations cultural roots -- the real roots, not the malignant misrepresentations pronounced by the Left, but the true heritage upon which our nation was founded. Do not allow the proponents of propaganda to succeed. Attend school board meetings. Meet with teachers. If necessary, become part of a local activist group to demand that a proper civics course that includes early American history (the real version) and our Constitution is a required part of any student's public education. Make sure that our Constitution is being properly taught so that students understand that our Constitution does not grant rights to citizens, it prohibits government from interfering with those natural rights everyone is endowed with by our Creator.
Bob Webster, a descendant of Daniel Webster's father, Revolutionary War patriot Ebenezer Webster, has always had a strong interest in early American history, our Constitution, U.S. politics, and law. Politically he is a constitutional republican with objectivist and libertarian roots. He has faith in the ultimate triumph of truth and reason over deception and emotion. He is a strong believer in our Constitution as written and views the abandonment of constitutional restraint by the regressive Progressive movement as a great danger to our Republic. His favorite novel is Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand and believes it should be required reading for all high school students so they can appreciate the cost of tolerating the growth of unconstitutional crushingly powerful central government. He strongly believes, as our Constitution enshrines, that the interests of the individual should be held superior to the interests of the state.
A lifelong interest in meteorology and climatology spurred his strong interest in science. Bob earned his degree in Mathematics at Virginia Tech, graduating in 1964.