|NUMBER 296||THE NEWSPAPER OF EDUCATION RIGHTS||SEPTEMBER 2010|
Socialism was supposed to be in its death throes when the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics dissolved on Christmas Day in 1991. But, like Freddie Krueger, it refuses to die.
Perhaps it is the infiltration of "social justice" teaching into our schools, or our cultural ignorance of history. Whatever the reasons, a full 43% of American 18- to 29-year-olds (and 33% of 30- to 49-year-olds) had a positive reaction to the word "socialism" in a recent Pew Research Center survey. If you know some of them, please get them a copy of 10 Truths About Socialism.
This pocket-sized book shows how socialism has failed every time it has been tried, from the ardently Christian Pilgrims at Plymouth Rock in 1620 to today's Venezuela under Hugo Chavez. Early chapters concisely explain how the philosophies of Rousseau, Marx and others paved the way for both the Nazi-Facist and Communist versions of socialism that led to the deaths of more than 110 million people in the 20th century.
The authors clarify how socialism's insistence on the primacy of the state over individuals, families and churches is at odds with man's very nature. As the Jamestown and Plymouth Rock settlers learned and recorded for posterity, people work much harder when they get to keep the fruits of their own labor, and they resent providing for lazy neighbors.
The book also addresses a point of confusion for many: Does Jesus' concern for the poor justify support for socialism? No, say the authors, because biblical teaching upholds private ownership of property and condemns stealing what belongs to others — and Caesar is not exempt.
Furthermore, neither man nor God attributes virtue to those coerced into giving. Also significant, say the authors, is that "Governments do not give in the name of Jesus. They give in their own name, and the politicians who pass the entitlement legislation to 'redistribute the wealth' get the 'glory.'"
Socialism is not just an economic program to make sure everyone has "enough." It is a worldview at war with the rule and sovereignty of God. Despite attempts by some to reconcile Marxist socialism with Christian faith, one indisputable fact remains: wherever socialism has prevailed, Christians have been systematically attacked and persecuted. And why not — if the state is man's master and provider, God is quite unnecessary. And that, according to its founding fathers, is precisely the point of socialism.