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Letter from America: When social policies go wrong

BY KENNETH MUFUKA

I have been nominated to serve on the board of United Ministries in my home county and immediately, I began to struggle with one of the greatest ironies of moral philosophy — how to do good without destroying the subject one wants to help.

United Ministries is responsible for free clinics, rehabilitating folks who lose their houses, and making sure that no kid goes hungry at night. Since we are Christians, we are certain that religion gives folks a sense of dignity and aspiration to do better.

So, we encourage our customers: “Come to church as you are.”

In the attached photo, the reader will find a witness to what Aristotle refers to when he says every extreme action brings about a negative effect. This “come as you are” syndrome has become so widespread that it is beginning to have a negative effect on the nature of worship. Without betraying trust, I can confess that I found it difficult to concentrate, no matter how many times I tried to say a prayer of supplication. My prayer of supplication (requesting God’s favour) had brought these overly friendly sisters to sit next to the deacon’s bench, where my eyes could not be diverted from seeing what I was seeing, no matter how much I tried.

On a more serious note, Democrats have a reputation for having a heart, while Republicans have brains. So, when President Joe Biden came to power, he wanted to show Latino illegal immigrants that he had a heart. Well over 10 000 children, below age 10 had been separated from their parents by the former administration. The reason is that judges had decreed those children could not be placed into detention centers. They must have kindergarten teachers, nurses and social workers to attend to their needs.

A clever attorney found a loophole and sued the US government for causing pain and irreparable suffering. The Biden administration, agreed, out of court, to settle for US$450 000 per child. One third of the money goes to greedy attorneys.

The issue here is that there are US war veterans who lost limbs in Iraq and Afghanistan and have been in and out of hospitals ever since. They have not been treated in that way. Then there is the effect on the immigration train, which Trump had prohibited to enter the US. Now, over 20 000 are on the Texas border. If treated badly, they could very well sue the US government. This is a no-win situation for the Biden government.

But the Biden government finds itself in deeper waters on every welfare front. First, Congress extended the period of unemployment checks to one year during the Covid-19 pandemic. Since these checks generally replace the employment checks, and they are free from taxes, a low income beneficiary will have more take home pay than when he was working.

To be overly generous there are what is called Obama phones. Former president Barack Obama felt that the poor need to keep up with their children. A free phone was the answer. However, these phones get lost or get dropped. The replacement fee is U$10. In many cases welfare mothers have two or more phones, since children are entitled to phones as well.

But that is not all. A single mother generally receives food stamps (US$200 per child). Since Covid-19 quarantine, Biden’s administration allowed an additional allowance per child. The argument was that children not at school need more nutrition (meaning food) than if they were at school. A woman with five children (U$1 000) plus an additional supplement of U$300 is better off remaining in a state of destitution indefinitely.

This is what I am driving at. There are three Waffle House restaurants within a radius of five miles in our city, which have been closed. They cannot find workers. There are signs in every street. “WE ARE NOW HIRING.” These words are written in large print.

I am the project leader of Methodist Men. Our orders for door screens are running late by 20 weeks (five months).

For some reasons, shipping lines trade unions in California have decoded to go on strike at this time of most need. Ships are lined up miles into sea waiting embarkment.

Biden, in a hurry to satisfy environmentalists closed the Canadian oil pipeline the first day he was in office. As many as 20 000 oil workers were unemployed and went on benefits.

That would have been a small price to pay. Oil prices have risen by more than a third, from U$2 per gallon to U$3.50 per gallon. Virtually all food items are now shipped by 18-wheeler trucks. As oil prices rose, food prices have gone up by a similar percentage.

Under these circumstances, the poor fare better than the middle class and the wealthy who do not receive benefits. There is a general feeling of disgruntlement.

The Biden administration has a heart for anybody who has a grudge with society. A bone of contention with religious groups is its overly sympathetic attitude for the fallen. While we are supposed to be role models in that area, we have serious disagreements with government policy.

There has been a Congressional hearing on the issue of abortion. Women’s sports organisations have sent representatives, one of their star Olympics witnesses stated that; “I found myself pregnant and I did not know how.” They want government to fund abortion.

Well, we people of faith know how Eve gets pregnant if she sleeps with Adam. We do not think that it is our duty as a society to aid and abet sexual promiscuity. Anything that is subsidised is bound to self-multiply.

I have left the most contentious issue for the last. Universities and educational institutions have been brought under a spell called “gender fluidity.” These institutions are dominated by female teachers and counsellors who sissify our boys. Usually, it is the boys who then claim that: “I feel like a girl.” The counselors then coddle them up and give them all kinds of medical and psychiatric support against the wishes of their parents. The welfare element comes when universities provide “safe places” where they can watch television and study without “feeling intimidated” by straight people.

These phenomena, boys who are sissified and girls who are tom boys were found in Bantu society. Such children were sent to their elders; the Masai sent the boys to bush camp where they were taught to “man up.” Girls were similarly treated and generally the phase passed away. The Biden administration jumps to encourage, offerings support for military for trans-gender medical surgery costing U$100 000 each. The universities have become centres for these socially disruptive ideas.

  • Ken Mufuka is a Zimbabwean patriot. His award-winning book, Matters of Conscience (2002) has been reprinted and is available at Innov8 Bookshops in Zimbabwe and at kenmufukabooks.com in the wider world. He can be reached at mufukaken@gmail.com

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