Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Choose the Right

Yesterday was my favorite church day, the day all of our primary children, ages 3-11, put on their annual program.  Nearly 100 children walked mostly-reverently through the chapel up to the stand and choir seats in the front.  There they sang songs, and each said something brief about what they had been learning this year in their Sunday classes.  Their theme this year was “Choose the Right.”  As the kids sang and talked about making good choices and following Jesus, I was so moved by their sweet spirits and their budding desires to do what is right. To choose to do what they believe they should. To choose to follow the path they have been taught will lead them to the greatest happiness.  They were celebrating not only the concept to “Choose the Right,” but also the “Right to Choose.”

What a blessing we have living in a country founded on basic, God-given rights. Our freedoms are bountiful.  I had to laugh a little last week when I saw that an Iranian news agency picked up a story from The Onion with the headline: “Gallup Poll: Rural Whites Prefer Ahmadinejad to Obama.” 

First, I thought it was interesting that people out there in the world actually find that plausible.  But, while we know The Onion is just a newspaper for entertainment and farce, I can understand how people in certain other countries may not know that, or even believe that such a thing would be possible. 

Political satire is lost on much of the world, simply because such a notion as mocking or criticizing government leaders or policy carries such severe consequences. 

Our freedom of speech is something many of us take for granted.  Even simple blogs, such as this, could get writers in deep trouble.  Speaking our minds, expressing our beliefs, gathering together to discuss them—all freedoms that not all of the world enjoys.

How grateful we should be for the rights afforded us simply by being Americans in this great country.  We cannot take these for granted.  Our nation fought a hard, bloody fight to gain its freedom.  But loss of freedom comes in  a much more subtle way. More government control, less personal choice. More government intervention, less individual responsibility.

Ronald Reagan said, “Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same. “

Now more than ever we must be vigilant in guarding our freedoms, our god-given rights.  We must elect leaders who understand this and will fight for us.  Leaders who will select judges who will uphold our rights. Leaders who will help preserve our “Right to Choose” so we can “Choose the Right.”  Leaders like Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan. 

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