Friday, April 24, 2009


Texas Governor Rick Perry got everyone fired up last week at a tax day "tea party." You can read The Dallas Morning News report on the event and the Governor's involvement in it here.

Talk about something that makes you go "hmmmm"?

The last time a state leader talked about secession was right before the Civil War when South Carolina took steps to lead the entire South out of the Union. The breach in the fabric of the Republic that followed in 1861 had been preceded in 1832 by the so-called Nullification Crisis, a conflict based largely on differences of opinion about federal protective tariffs and economic policy at the time, with a obvious connection to the institution of slavery.

I'm wondering how this talk of and sympathy for secession as a state fits into any guidelines for "how to be patriotic" as citizens at the beginning of the 21st century?

It also seems most curious, but possibly not so outlandish on second thought, when one considers how the State of Texas ranks on "quality of life" issues for those at the bottom of the economy.

I understand that Jay Leno had some fun at our Governor's expense last week (watch the monologue here). No doubt a sure sign that Mr. Perry has made the "big time" on the national political stage!

Ain't politics something?

This post is dedicated to the memory of Morris Franklin James (April 24, 1920-December 16, 2007). We love you, daddy. Rest in peace.



Daniel Gray said...

I could get along with a Texas-less US. This post sums up my thoughts about Texas seceding:

However, secession would not be healthy for the state of Texas. Texas politics simply reflect the unhealthy "everyman for himself" mentality that has destroyed our communities.

Daniel Gray said...

Also, the tea parties struck me as purely partisan stench. I didn't see these same people protesting wasteful government spending when Bush was amassing gargantuan war debts.

anonymous said...

The core issue here is that many politically-conservative Americans feel betrayed by the Federal Government's ever-increasing role. To wit, since Obama has taken office, the Feds have essentially nationalized many private banks, nationalized other financial institutions (the Fannies), and begun nationalizing still other companies, such as the U.S. automakers. The core values of the capitalist system, however, demand that if companies make poor financial management decisions which lead to their impending demise, they should be allowed to fail. They have, after all, brought on such travail all by themselves, and should therefore be allowed to suffer the consequences. People feel betrayed, therefore, because the Federal Government is taking tax dollars, which many conservatives believe is an unconstitutional process [the taxing of income] in and of itself, and using them to prop up these institutions. It is one thing to spend money on a war, which is entirely within the Constitutional purview of the U.S. Congress and, many would say, the Presidency; it is another to take over the control of private enterprises which have made these poor choices.

The threat to seceed, therefore, is, as I understand it, an attempt to recover the legitimacy of the Constitutionally-ordained principle (see the 9th and 10th Amendments) of the "powers...[which] are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people" which are "not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states," and of the "certain rights" "retained by the people." Politically-conservative Americans believe that there is, essentially, taxation without representation - that the Federal Government is making the above-mentioned arbitrary decisions to spend tax money without input from 'ordinary' Americans. Hence, the "tea party" concept...

Amanda said...

The number of Christians who participated in the Tea Parties intrigues and troubles me. A basic tenet of Christianity in regards to money is that it is not ours, it is God’s. Jesus was pretty clear in the gospels about his attitude toward taxes. I do understand being concerned that taxes go to pay for things that are counter to one’s religious beliefs, like war funding, abortion funding, etc., but these protests seem to just be a general don’t let the government take MY wealth thing. If taxes were lowered would these Christian protestors reroute that money to their churches and/or charitable organizations (I hope so) or would it buy more consumer items for themselves and their families? All that to say I just don’t get it from a Christian point of view.

Chris said...


Yours was the most amazing post I have read in a long time!

You seem to think the government is better able to spend a persons hard earned money than the individual.

In one sense the money we earn does belong to God, we are merely stewards, but the majority of it does not belong to the government. Are you saying the government knows better how to spend it than the individual? Maybe so if you live in a Communist country.

Amanda said...

Chris-I made no comment about who/what could spend money better, government or an individual. I was just observing that as a Christian I find it odd that other Christians are so upset by having to pay the government with THEIR money, when of course it is not really their money. Do Christians protest giving money to the cable company, electric company, phone company, etc,?

I'm simply questioning if having to give x or y percent of your income to the government in the form of taxes is something God would want us to be concerned with as Christians. Are the other things, related or not to money, that would be better thing for us to be concerned about.

Chris said...

Soon we will be giving half our income to the government and that is plenty to be concerned about, unless, of course, you make millions.

Steve said...


Take a breath, and read to understand. You are both missing and making Amanda's point.

TwoCents said...


Your politics are your politics. But please don't pretend they have anything to do with Christianity. About the only thing Jesus ever said about wealth was to be wary of it. He certainly didn't say, "hold on to what you got as tightly as possible." Amanda's post was an honest reflection on this fact.