Through the last 3 to 4 weeks, I have started a series on the highly volatile subject of “injustice” and “evil.”

The mere mention of these two terms is enough to set off people into a white-hot and inflamed debate.

Some people do not believe that “objective evil” even exists as a subject.

Other people define evil in a myriad of different ways that make it very difficult to tackle this entity of evil with a shared language.

This writer states and affirms that the “Judeo-Christian” value-system is the only philosophy that historically defines evil in a manner that can be traced over the last 4 millennium.

To trace our steps from the last several weeks, both the Old and New Testaments of The Holy Bible state that evil is an affront against the very nature, character, and person of The Creator of The Universe – or Almighty GOD. 

Saint Augustine wrote that the book of Genesis articulates in the first two chapters what is known as man created in the “Imago Dei” (in the image of GOD).

GOD created mankind with many unique endowments:

  • Mankind unlike non-mankind is a sentient being (we think, we reflect, we speculate and we mediate);
  • Mankind has the ability to distance herself from her immediate environments – we call this “self-awareness”’;
  • Mankind makes “moral judgments”;we call the study of moral judgments the branch of philosophy known as “ethics”;
  • Finally, mankind possesses the ability to dream, imagine, and to think about a better reality.

The Judeo-Christian worldview states that while GOD created mankind in His Image, that ALL of Humanity from The Garden of Eden forward has “corrupted themselves.”

Historically, people who embrace a Judeo-Christian belief system have attempted to curb the evil in human hearts through the means of – (1.) Repentance; (2.) Reform; and (3.) Revolution.

Last week, we looked at addressing evil and injustice through repentance; today we look at addressing injustice / evil through “reform.”

Historically, both the Synagogue and the Christian Church have led the way of “reforming” many of the evil and injustices that have plagued American society.

Perhaps a few examples will suffice:

  • The first anti-Slavery society was started by Benjamin Franklin. Franklin was neither Jewish or Christian; he was a “Unitarian.”  Nevertheless, one of Franklin’s closet friends was the Evangelist George Whitfield.  Franklin wrote in his journal that the individual that he admired and emulated the most was “Jesus Christ.”
  • The Abolitionist movement was fueled by a wide range of people from all faiths and religious practices who hated the “peculiar institution” of slavery;
  • The “Temperance” and the “Women’s suffrage” (fighting for women to get the right to vote; a right that was eventually obtained in 1920) phenomena were driven by people of faith;
  • Finally, the “Civil Rights Movement” started in Christian Church – the most successful part of the Civil Rights struggle from 1955 to 1970 – and spread like wildfire into the “Jewish synagogue” and into the broader American Society.

Why is the broader “reform” of culture so important?

Quite simply, people with a Judeo-Christian compass MUST address the society in which they live in because (a.) they have been commanded to do so and (b.) if they do not address the culture then people who are hostile to religiously grounded values will force their worldview upon everyone else.

Two historic and “secular” cases in point revolve around the French Revolution of 1790 – which sought to ban religious values from the public square and the modern movement to demonize and ban people of faith from discussing “science and politics” (see the works of the late literary genius Christopher Hitchens and the writings of the Zoologist Richard Dawkins – both of these men despised any reference to addressing human problems from a “faith based perspective”).

The nation’s current preoccupation with the rioting and racial strife in Ferguson, Missouri – and to a lesser extent New York City will not be successfully addressed by “talking heads.”

Talking heads, certain parts of the Civil Rights industry, and inflammatory broadcasters and writers in the news media make their living and huge compensation off of continued racial strife and by stroking the flames of hatred and animosity.

Men and Women who adhere to the “Judeo-Christian” value system have a means of addressing evil and injustice from a historic vantage point that has passed the tests of time.

GOD bless ALL of you and “Happy New Year!”

My Magnificent Seven colleague A.P. Dillon tweeted this morning,

Which brought up the question in my mind, Were taxes an issue in the 2014 midterm election?

Obamacare, as Chief Justice Roberts ruled, is a tax, and it appears to have been a factor in last November’s election, since half of the Senators who voted for Obamacare won’t be part of new Senate.

Obamacare aside, voters at the polls did not appear to be directly energized by the issue of taxes.

The key word is directly.

Indirectly, however, things are happening:

The US Census Bureau announced last week that New York slipped to fourth place in population among the 50 states.

Though babies are still born here every day, and immigrants still flock in, overall population growth lags because New Yorkers are abandoning the state.

Don’t blame the weather. Blustery Montana and North Dakota aren’t having this problem. New Yorkers are escaping high taxes and dismal job growth.

Other high-tax states like Illinois and New Jersey, which has the country’s second-highest tax burden, are also hemorrhaging residents. Families are uprooting and moving to places with lower taxes, more growth and fossil-fuel-friendly policies.

The residents who fled the high-state taxes essentially gave up on changing the local and state politics, so they picked up and left.

So are New Jerseyans. Despite having a Republican governor, they’re among the most taxed Americans, and nearly 200,000 decamped in the last four years in search of a better deal.

New Jersey, for instance, has some of the highest school and local taxes in the country; then you have state income taxes – and how has that worked out?

New Jersey was a high-growth state until it added an income tax in 1976.

And, if you die in New Jersey, your estate gets to pay estate taxes and your heirs pay inheritance taxes.

Not to mention all the taxes your business has to pay the State, on top of the costs of conducting business in N.J.

“But governor Christie’s a Republican!” you may respond. A fat lot of good that has done (all puns intended).

I ought to know. I upped and moved to Florida six months ago.

Fausta Rodriguez Wertz writes on U.S. and Latin American politics, news and culture at Fausta’s Blog.

With all the excitement of  New Years Day you might have missed an observation from Glenn Reynolds who spoke aloud the dirty little secret about urban policing that the police “slowdown” has revealed.

 The real scandal isn’t that NYC is being denied law enforcement now, it’s that much of that “law enforcement” is really just a system designed to squeeze money out of the citizenry.  (emphasis mine)

The piece he links mentions the drop  in various offenses so let’s think about this for a second.  It’s a given we don’t want people double parking (which blocks the public ways)  or overstaying meters (so that people can come and go)  We don’t want public urination (unsanitary) nor people in public drunkenness or wasted (dangerous to the public and themselves)  or violating the rules of the road (safety) but it’s interesting to see that this has become less about enforcing laws than money.  Glenn again.

All of these, except maybe the drug arrests — and probably including those too — are basically revenue offenses. By not arresting here, the cops are starving the City for revenue. The Knoxville Police do the same thing when they’re crosswise with the City; they stop writing tickets.

And the Daily Beast has more along those lines:

Abraham, a yellow cab driver and student, feels that blacks are targeted unfairly by the police. And what’s more, the police are injudicious in their choice of which crimes to pay attention to. “Sometimes you’ll see two police officers on the corner here, and a block away you’ll hear a gunshot, and they’re not really doing anything,” he said. “There’s a lot of drug dealing around, there’s a lot of guns around, and all of that is just increasing, and a lot of them are focusing on traffic violations, which don’t really have an impact on crime.”

If someone of the anti-police left wanted to expand their base, they’d be arguing that all of this amounts to a TAX on individuals and ask:  “Do you support arbitrary Taxation?” and I say “arbitrary” because the slowdown illustrates that these fines can be waived and ignored at will.

But I guarantee you these brave protesters will not.  Why?  The answer tomorrow morning in a post called:  …and the Inevitable Endgame (link won’t be active till Saturday morning)

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