Carlyle Fielding Stewart III

Writings on Democracy, Social Justice, and Religion

” Yes! Charity Begins at Home.”

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The old adage that “charity begins at home” is true! When I look out over our beloved country and see that some politicians want to take away the few crumbs from average Americans and give it all away to corporations or to everybody but Americans,  I am stunned and deeply perplexed.

For the life of me I cannot comprehend why people would want to grab everything from the everyday working Americans and give it to people who don’t need it. Why are politicians doing this? Why are they declaring war on those who have not? This is a deep betrayal of one of the most important maxims of all times which says,

Take care of home first; take care of your family first; take care of your country first; take care of your soldiers first, take care of your people first before you start taking care of everybody else and giving the entire shop away.

This selfishness that I now see is not only shocking but is morally reprehensible and only fuels the fires of pain that many people now feel. When our men and women put on uniforms and go and fight for their country putting life, limb and liberty on the line, and if they are fortunate enough to return home to these beloved shores, we ought to take care of them by providing them with the comprehensive assistance they need to take care of themselves and their families.

When working people have spent all their lives making profits for their employers and even at times risking life and health by trying to provide for their families, we ought to take care of them by making sure that they have the various means of support such as social security, Medicare and other amenities that will help sustain them into their later years.

When the poor, disabled, widows, orphans and other people struggle each day to make it in our land and then suddenly have those resources taken away from them by greedy and selfish politicians who only want more power and more money to be put into their campaign coffers under the pretext of satisfying their political sponsors, it makes you wonder if they understand the importance of taking care of our own.

I am very serious here. For the life of me I do not understand politicians, and some of them are Christians, who want to pull life support from people who are already dying a slow death, whose lives barely exist on single threads because they have no future and have no hope or very little food on their tables or other means of support. What happens to a country when some of its leaders lose their souls? What happens to a nation that overlooks its elderly, allows people to be unfairly thrown out of their homes, and keeps stamping out the last vestiges of hope and dignity from them?

Moreover, no matter how many speeches have been given, how many prayers have been prayed, how many worship services have been attended, how many meetings have been met, how many summits have been summoned, how many laws have been passed, how many policies have been made, how many checks have been written for political campaigns, how many creeds have been crafted, how many stories have been told about how great and gifted and wealthy this nation is, if we do not take care of our own; if we do not take care for those who are just trying to take care of themselves in our own country then we have already lost this battle.

Nothing suffices for charity at home. Nothing supplants compassion for one’s own countrymen! Nothing suffuses joy more than when the grim of every solemn grief is dispelled, when honest caring hard working Americans receive a hand up out of the quagmires of despair from people who care about them and help them at their lowest points and at their hours of greatest need and their leaders have not lost compassion or respect for them or blame them as victims by dismissing their wounds and suffering as self inflicted.  Nothing!

When I watch how people come to this country and help themselves and their own group; when I watch how such people ship their dollars and their resources back to their first countries, which thankfully is their version of charity sent home, which is good for their people and can be good for Americans when we have the same feelings for our own citizens, and then watch how everyday Americans are struggling and suffering and often whittled down to nothing, often belittled and overlooked by their own leaders with the last iota of dignity snatched from them as they are called “lazy” or “dumb,” or undeserving of charity,  and when I watch how everybody else can come to America, and get the competitive advantage economically and educationally, and are always given the benefit of the doubt and the people who came here first to build this country to make it prosperous; people who have been loyal to America and have given America virtually everything that America has and those very same people are overlooked because their suffering and plight have gone out of style or cannot be politically or economically exploited, or because they are feared and devalued because of race, gender, ethnicity or age, or because they are stigmatized and besmirched by such words as “entitlements,” then we all should be sorry because we have not recognized that charity begins at home.

Charity begins at home and we need to learn in this country how to take care of Americans first! Stop giving the shop away to everybody else who cares nothing about us! Stop allowing countries to take advantage of our trade policies where they get everything and we get very little or nothing in return, all just to make a few people richer while the majority of the people become poorer! Stop overlooking and belittling the people who have labored with all their might to build this country; people who have given every ounce of strength, integrity and dignity so that this country might live and grow and prosper for all of the American people.

Yes! Charity begins at home my friends and until America gets this message and lives by the mantra of helping her own people first and not putting them last then we will never master the lesson of what makes a nation great and strong and viable for the future.

When we take care of our own we take care of our country. When we take care of our women, children, youths and men, we take care of our country. When we help our own students get an education and workers get jobs, we take care of our country. When we help other Americans in need by giving them food stamps, and other forms of charity without making them feel worse than they already feel, we take care of our country and we all win as a nation.

When will we see this? When will people who call themselves Americans start taking care of our own citizens so that people no longer walk the streets homeless or go to jail just to have a roof over their heads and food on their pallets and we no longer have people hungry and sick and hopeless and numb with pain? When?

Yes! Charity begins at home. We need to get this nation moving again and start practicing these values without malice or bias and stop playing the politics of favoritism where some people get most of everything and the other people might get what’s left.

Charity at home is a first step in developing a stronger America. Thank God President Obama and some politicians see this and are committed to helping those truly in need.

Charity at home will enable this country to repair its breaches, raise its hopes as a nation, restore the confidence of its people, renew the American spirit, and lay a foundation of creativity, innovation, empathy and compassion for all of her citizens to help this nation grow stronger, brighter and more prosperous! Let that charity begin at home and let it begin with each of us. Let it begin with some of our politicians and elected representatives and our religious and business leaders. Let charity begin in our hearts for those who really need it. Stop taking the bank and bread from average Americans and let’s start restoring our pride in being Americans! Help the people who have helped America.


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