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"Every sin is a form of violence."- 'Problem of Non-Violence,' Navajivan, 6 June 1926 (from The Essential Writings of Mahatma Gandhi edited by Raghavan Iyer)

I'm a foster parent.

My state, like many states, is having sever budget issues.  Yesterday, I went to my State Capitol to rally and lobby to restore the funds cut from the proposed State Budget  for the agency that oversees abused and neglected children.  I won't bore you with the details, even if I fully understood them, but suffice it to say, that the proposed cuts would devastate a protection system that is already last in the country in helping children.

I was brushed off by my local state representative, one of the few liberals left in my state's government, and I found out that this representative was actually responsible for writing this section of the proposed budget.  She defends the budget by saying how much worse it could be.

I sat down in the halls of government and watched, and prayed, and thought.

Everything in the Capitol Building is over-sized, gilded, hand carved and covered in leather.  Twenty foot high ceilings and doors.  Marble walls, columns, statuary.  Enormous wooden door frames and stair railings.  Huge paintings of the important battles for independence.  Portraits of every Governor, many of whom have gone on to be President.  And gold and bronze gilded everything.  The place was designed for fifteen foot high humans who stride like gods through the halls.

I went out onto the grounds of the Capitol and found what the plaque said was a collection of six statues of school children created with funds donated by school children in 1993. "A Tribute to Texas School Children" the plaque was titled.  Only four of the statues were there.  The base for a fifth was still there, the sixth base was missing.

I wanted to cry.

The giants of the Texas Legislature and the school children of Texas.

"Every sin is a form of violence."

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Comment by William F. Horan Jr. on March 28, 2011 at 14:09

Yes, "Every sin is a form of violence." But one could also say: "Taxes are a form of violence". We should not spend our energy trying to coerce people to help the poor through the government tax system. We must set the example for others through voluntary associations. The following is an attempt to persuade the Catholic Church to give priority to the poor:

 


A "preferential option for the poor" should be maintained in our Catholic
Schools. If we find that we cannot afford to keep our schools open to the
poor, the schools should be closed and the resources used for something else
which can be kept open to the poor. We cannot allow our Church to become a
church primarily for the middle-class and rich while throwing a bone to the
poor. The priority should be given to the poor even if we have to let the
middle-class and rich fend for themselves.
Practically speaking, the Catholic Schools must close and the resources
used for "Confraternity of Christian Doctrine" and other programs which can
be kept open to the poor. Remember, the Church managed without Catholic
Schools for centuries. We can get along without them today. The essential
factor is to cultivate enough Faith to act in the Gospel Tradition, namely,
THE POOR GET PRIORITY. The rich and middle-class are welcome too. But the
poor come first. (William Horan  -- w.horan@comcast.net.)

Comment by Ramesh Tailang on March 26, 2011 at 8:22
What looks attractive, in real sense, may not be active. This is what, we call, woes of the System.

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