Read the story here. Advertise at Before It's News here.
Profile image
By (Reporter)
Contributor profile | More stories
Story Views
Last hour:
Last 24 hours:

Charity is no Part of the Government

% of readers think this story is Fact. Add your two cents.

This is the second of 7 installments in our series, “Compassion, Not Compulsion: Why the Welfare State Fails to Lift the Poor.” This guest post is by James Whitford, and was originally published on TrueCharity. Learn more about TrueCharity here. 


I was in a meeting with some people who work for a government-funded organization that helps other organizations get funded by the government. I hope that sounds strange to you. It should. The conversation was cordial enough but certainly had its tense moments like when I bluntly declined to participate with a group that strategizes to take tax dollars for the work of charity. Unfortunately today, the position that charity should be privately funded is often ridiculed as unrealistic. But that position is nothing new as is the temptation for legislators to appropriate someone else’s earnings to provide relief for strangers in need.

Less than 20 years after our nation’s founding, a debate arose in the House of Representatives as to whether the US government should provide relief for Haitian refugees pouring into New England. The recordings of that third congress revealed compassion was the driving force to consider whether the sum of $15,000 should be spent from the Treasury to aid those escaping a war-torn Haiti in the midst of revolution. James Madison’s dissent was clear: “Charity is no part of the legislative duty of government. It would puzzle any gentleman to lay his finger on any part of the Constitution which would authorize the government to interpose in the relief of…sufferers.”

Was Madison heartless? Did his solid stance against government aid reflect an indifference to the suffering of others? Not at all. In fact, he pressed on to consider other ways to care for those refugees without compromising his principled Constitutional position. For those who had fought for freedom against the oppressive rule of a large and expansive government, their newfound liberty demanded this one remain small and limited. The state was to remain laissez-faire, hands-off in the affairs of men, providing only a simple framework of law and order upon which a free and flourishing society could be built; one in which each person was unrestricted to speak his mind, build his dream, defend his family, and to be charitable toward his neighbor in need.

What happened? Only a handful of generations later, that strict constructionist and limited government perspective has given way to a contagious dependency on a massive federal system whose gross overreach feeds the masses but never solves the problem. Instead, true charity that flows out of compassion, selflessness and love for neighbor is crowded out by a seemingly endless supply of state aid that incentivizes its recipients to remain sick and poor.

So why is it nearly every day, one can find another news piece decrying the proposal of federal cuts to various relief programs? Government programs that feed, house, help tutor, even programs that help people travel are all on the cutting block. Are we stuck in a box of believing government is required for us to help our neighbor? Are our community’s relief programs so dependent on government subsidy that they can’t stand alone with local support? Are we to believe that if a government program loses its funding, a more effective form won’t resurrect by the courage of a compassionate community? I don’t.

To conclude that a good work funded by the government needs government funding is to forget there was a day when the government wasn’t so necessary to do good work. There was a time when the expectation for government to feed the hungry, provide shelter for the homeless or clothe the poor was nil. It was once the work of charity. For nearly two decades I have witnessed the work of true charity rescue countless people from the streets, deliver hope and freedom to the addicted, restore families that were broken and put people back to work.

It’s foolish to put faith in programs afforded by a government that can’t afford them. Neither should we fear their end. Instead, let’s put our faith in God and the power of a community that cares. My experience tells me we have reason to believe.


Photo credit: Geoff Livingston US Capitol via photopin (license)

By James Whitford, published in the Joplin Globe on April 30, 2017

Want to learn more about the principles of True Charity?  You can at True Charity University, an online learning platform offering interactive at-your-own-pace courses that help fine-tune your charitable practices, ensuring they help rather than hurt those in need. Visit to get started!

The post Charity is no Part of the Government appeared first on Libertarian Christian Institute.

Related Stories


Before It’s News® is a community of individuals who report on what’s going on around them, from all around the world.

Anyone can join.
Anyone can contribute.
Anyone can become informed about their world.

"United We Stand" Click Here To Create Your Personal Citizen Journalist Account Today, Be Sure To Invite Your Friends.

Please Help Support BeforeitsNews by trying our Natural Health Products below!

Order by Phone at 888-809-8385 or online at M - F 9am to 5pm EST

Order by Phone at 888-809-8385 or online at M - F 9am to 5pm EST

Humic & Fulvic Trace Minerals Complex - Nature's most important supplement! Vivid Dreams again!

HNEX HydroNano EXtracellular Water - Improve immune system health and reduce inflammation

Ultimate Clinical Potency Curcumin - Natural pain relief, reduce inflammation and so much more.

MitoCopper - Bioavailable Copper destroys pathogens and gives you more energy. (See Blood Video)
Oxy Powder - Natural Colon Cleanser!  Cleans out toxic buildup with oxygen! 
Nascent Iodine - Promotes detoxification, mental focus and thyroid health.
Smart Meter Cover -  Reduces Smart Meter radiation by 96%!  (See Video)

Immusist Beverage Concentrate - Proprietary blend, formulated to reduce inflammation while hydrating and oxygenating the cells.

Report abuse


Your Comments
Question   Razz  Sad   Evil  Exclaim  Smile  Redface  Biggrin  Surprised  Eek   Confused   Cool  LOL   Mad   Twisted  Rolleyes   Wink  Idea  Arrow  Neutral  Cry   Mr. Green

Load more ...




Email this story
Email this story

If you really want to ban this commenter, please write down the reason:

If you really want to disable all recommended stories, click on OK button. After that, you will be redirect to your options page.