The Nanny State and the Church


Great exchange is going on between Bradford Wilcox and Mark Galli on the effect othat nanny state socialism, the kind Comrade Obama seems to be pushing us toward, has on the church. Here’s Wilcox’s original article:

More Government, Less God

Galli’s rejoinder:

Will Obama’s Vision Sabotage Religion?

And Wilcox’s reply to Galli:

Part II

From Wilcox’s original piece comes this key paragraph:

Who cares if Americans substitute “In God We Trust” for “In Government We Trust”? But as political scientist Alan Wolfe observed in Whose Keeper?, one of the primary dangers associated with the rise of the nanny state is that “when government assumes moral responsibility for others, people are less likely to do so themselves.” Wolfe noted that large increases in welfare spending in Sweden, Denmark and Norway over the last half century have ended up eroding the moral fabric of families and civic institutions in these societies. Scandinavians have come to depend not on family, civil society, or themselves, but on the government for their basic needs.

Doing things that encourage people to be dependent upon government–rather than upon God, themselves, family, friends, and community, in that order–is not only wrongheaded, but demonstrably counterproductive in a variety of ways. We know this; it’s not rocket science or a recent revelation. And yet we seem bound and determined to move down this path–we can call it a “godless path” with justification–toward socialism. Socialism harms everything it touches including, as Wilcox points out, the church.

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