Working toward our better natures

Posted: Dec. 27, 2012 8:14 am Updated: Jan. 20, 2013 1:15 am

To The Herald-Whig:

The environment, education, equality: attend to these three well and one will be an exemplary citizen.

Without a healthy environment, we and the generations following will not have a healthy economy.

Overpopulation and overconsumption, especially of carbon-based energy, are root causes of socio-economic ills.

The earth's climate is changing for the worst, yet individually, collectively and internationally, little has been done to rectify our destructive ways. Bad habits are difficult to end. Are we virtuous enough to accept a carbon tax as a means of lowering our carbon consumption?

An educated citizenry is essential to the advancement of any society. The earlier it begins, the greater its effectiveness. A child's mind is very plastic. If begun early, curiosity, knowledge and rationality will have their greatest positive impact. Humanity, unfettered by ideologies embodying arrogance, excessive competitiveness parochialism or selfishness will be our lasting legacy.

To attain this enhanced level of learning, are we willing to devote to education as much of our wealth as we do to the militaries or prisons?

Unless equality prevails, no culture can long endure, nor should it.

We all do not receive the same deck. Our DNA and our exposure to beneficial experiences (education, health, economic opportunity and goodness) are not equally apportioned. Treating unequals equally magnifies the inequality.

Justice cannot exist in a climate of inequality. Confucius said it well: "Do not pervert justice, having one judgement for the poor and another for the rich."

A nation, or world, in which great wealth and great poverty coexist in no measure exhibits equality. Haven't we each a moral obligation to at least mitigate this grievous wrong? Can a culture or country claiming to be Christian ignore "as you have done unto the least of these, my brethren, so have you done unto me?"


Wendell Funk