The Norman Transcript

Letters

November 1, 2012

Some perspective required

NORMAN — Editor, The Transcript:

There are times when our religious convictions and our secular obligations come into conflict. This is not one of those times.

The Religious Society of Friends, commonly known as the Quakers, has denied “all bloody principles and practices” for more than 350 years— “all outward wars, and strife, and fightings with outward weapons for any end or under any pretense whatsoever” (Communication of George Fox and others to King Charles II of England, 1660).

In the United States, we call these outward wars — namely Iraq and Afghanistan — part of our “overseas contingency operations.” This fiscal year (October 2011 to September 2012), those conflicts will cost the United States $115 billion.

As Quakers, we call on the United States to lay down its weapons and do “that which tends to the peace of all.”

As Americans, we echo that call in the name of fiscal responsibility.

Our ungodly commitment to bloody principles and practices has gone hand-in-hand with our unsustainable commitment to spending beyond our means.

No nation — East or West, religious or secular, ancient or modern — can perpetually spend far more than it collects in taxes.

Our nation’s lawmakers continue to act as though immune to this law. This fiscal year, the United States will spend $3.8 trillion but collect just $2.5 trillion. This will only swell a national debt that currently stands at $15.7 trillion.

Some perspective is required here. Imagine a person carrying $157,000 in debt, with $25,000 in yearly income. Now imagine that person spending $38,000 in one year despite those numbers.

America is that person.

Laying down our weapons will not solve these problems. In truth, it represents but a fraction of the belt-tightening that is required, joined with other fiscal measures. And yet, this is a course we can and must pursue.

The divine imperative to seek peace and the secular obligation to balance our books are not at odds: in fact the first is a necessary step toward the second. Indeed, with targeted spending cuts, we can — in a single stroke — “render unto Caesar the things which are Caesar’s and unto God the things that are God’s” (Matthew 22:21).

We respectfully recommend this course to Sens. Tom Coburn and Jim Inhofe, Oklahoma’s delegation to the House of Representatives, all of their peers in Congress and President Barack Obama.

Norman Friends Meeting

For local news and more, subscribe to The Norman Transcript Smart Edition, or our print edition.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Letters
  • Health care needs have reached critical stage

    Once again, the Republican-led Oklahoma legislators are leaving Oklahoma’s neediest in the dust with their proposed 2014-2015 budget. Studies by the Oklahoma Health Care Authority and the Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance ...

    April 24, 2014

  • Reform is necessary

    Editor, The Transcript: Last year, the legislature passed laws reforming the Oklahoma Department of Veterans Affairs, which was a good start, but more is needed. Recent media reports have revealed that the ODVA employs M.D. and D.O. ...

    April 20, 2014

  • Keep your brain cells

    Editor, The Transcript: Hey kids. Four centuries ago, Shakespeare wrote about life’s seven great adventures. I forget his exact words, but they were something like this: 1. Our birth; none of us can remember it, but never the less, it is ...

    April 20, 2014

  • Necessary services may be reduced

    Editor, The Transcript: There were criticisms of the Oklahoma Senate bill for a test project to privatize management of Medicaid; however, no one mentioned a critical issue of reduced services for the more needy of our society....

    April 20, 2014

  • Enforcement not the issue

    Editor, The Transcript: The government is legally right in the U.S. Government vs. Bundy Ranch matter....

    April 20, 2014

  • Family thanks community, takes issue with photo

    Editor, The Transcript: As I write this, it’s been almost eight weeks since Feb. 17, the day my family’s home burned in a fire. We lost our 15-year-old cat, Misti; 7-year-old dog, Sully; 3-year-old rescue squirrel, Rocky; almost 2-year-old ...

    April 20, 2014

  • Norman should act wisely

    Editor, The Transcript: The fact that the city of Norman sells water for oil/gas drilling (or any other purpose) for less than half what they pay Oklahoma City when buying water, and while Norman residents are on rationing, is an act of ...

    April 18, 2014

  • Fallin should help residents

    Editor, The Transcript: I see this week that our empty skirt of a governor asked the federal government (small business administration) for much money. She is concerned about the suffering of the business owners in Lexington and Purcell ...

    April 17, 2014

  • League of Women Voters meeting

    Editor, The Transcript: On Saturday, May 10, the Norman League of Women Voters will hold its annual meeting at the Memorial Presbyterian Church, 601 24th Ave. SW, Norman, OK, from 11:30 am to 1:30 pm....

    April 12, 2014

  • Frackers should use gray water

    Editor, The Transcript: As reported by Joe Wertz in the March 31 issue of StateImpact Oklahoma, Finley Resources, a Texas-based oil drilling company, has arranged with the city of Norman to buy Norman’s drinking water from hydrants to use ...

    April 11, 2014