>Western Tribune column September 30 2009 Communism

>I wrote this column in response to an accusation made against me in The Western Tribune last week by a reader. I am not going to reprint the 300+ word letter, but what it said, basically was that “Obama admitted to communism…share the wealth” and that he was “selected to be the change agent…by Lord Jacob Rothschild to be president” and that “the name ‘Openshaw’ is degraded…for defending communism…”

The claims about Jacob Rothschild set off an alarm because of the radical nature of the author who is promoting that claim about him and Obama. Google it if you don’t know.

Don’t expect your radical comments to be accepted. Nice ones will, though

Western Tribune column

In my column two weeks ago I wrote of a group of people who want to take us back to an earlier time. While I was referring to the days of segregation, during that same period another ugly idealism developed: McCarthyism, where often unfounded accusations were made against public and not so public figures that they were communists. Apparently there are still those who want to return to that era as well, as if communism is the greatest threat we face today.

These modern day McCarthyists use the accusation of “communist” just as it was used against such noted civil rights leaders as Martin Luther King Jr and Bayard Rustin – to discredit those who are working for equality and progress, including myself.

In last week’s column I mentioned the teachings of Jesus as a reason to support the public option in health care and now that “sharing the wealth” has been equated with communism I want to address that as Jesus might see it also.

Jesus implied without doubt that we are to share the wealth. When he instructed his disciples to feed the five thousand, he didn’t just make some food appear. The charitable actions of the few inspired the others in the crowd that might have had some food to share theirs as well.

Everyone was fed.

But that is just charity, not government distribution, one might argue.

The Bible teaches us to create a just society. We ignore that directive and have created a society that neglects the poor and rewards the rich. Justice would have us provide a decent life for all. Society has had two thousand years to reach that goal, yet still we refuse to see. Is it greed that blinds us? Or maybe it’s just our ignorance that keeps us from understanding.

Ignorance is the evil we face today, not communism. And by that I don’t mean stupidity, I mean those who refuse to educate themselves. Reading a book about conspiracy theories and prophecy does not relieve one of ignorance, in fact it may contribute to it if it prevents one from further investigation of, say, whether the book has any validity or not.

If Obama is a communist, as some have indicated is their belief, then Jesus was too. And if not a communist, he was certainly a progressive liberal. And this is 2009, not 1949.

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