Sunday, September 25, 2011
by Peg Luksik
Once upon a time there were two brothers. The older would, by birthright,
inherit all that his father owned. A day came when the older wanted
something to eat. He had been outside all day, and was hungry. The younger
had a meal already prepared. The older asked the younger to give him the
dinner. The younger agreed, on the condition that the older would give up
his birthright in return for the free meal. The older took the deal, gave
up his birthright, and ate.
Most of us recognize the story. And we scratch our heads at a person who
would give away an entire birthright for one meal.
We shouldn’t. We are just like him.
America was founded on the recognition that each of us has a birthright of
endowed and unalienable rights. Like all birthrights, it brings the promise
of opportunity and blessing, provided that we honor the responsibility of
protecting and cherishing it. Our birthright cannot legitimately be taken
from any of us, but each of us can choose to give it away. If enough of us
make that choice, the birthright’s promise will be lost to all of us.
Sadly, many Americans are making that choice. They are selling their
birthright of endowed rights for the free meal of government entitlements.
And like the older brother in the story, they are convincing themselves that
their immediate needs are so important that meeting them is worth what they