On April 13, we will celebrate Thomas Jefferson’s 271st birthday, our third president and one of our Founding Fathers.
I often wonder what our founding fathers would think of our culture today. A culture that tells us we must not question or go against our governing authority, even if it means going against our deeply held religious beliefs.
These are men who started a war because they believed in religious freedom and wanted England to stop imposing ridiculous taxes on them. They wanted their money to go to something they believed in and not the power-hungry coercive government that England was becoming.
Thomas Jefferson once said, “To compel a man to furnish funds for the propagation of ideas he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical.”
Interesting point, Mr. Jefferson.
Scott Southworth, a second year law student, discovered that he was forced to pay student fees that went to fund student groups that supported ideas he didn’t agree with. We took this eight-year-long case all the way to the Supreme Court, where the ruling seemed to be a loss for Scott, until they read further into it. Scott and his fellow students were required to pay the student fees, BUT the school could no longer refuse to fund groups based on their view point. This meant that Scott’s money would also be going to groups he supported!
I have a feeling that President Jefferson would be shaking his head just knowing that this was ever an issue. It shouldn’t take eight years to decide that a student shouldn’t be forced to pay for causes he doesn’t believe in, with the threat of bad grades or refusal of a diploma hanging over his head.
The colonists believed so strongly in using their God given financial resources in a conscientious way, they were willing to go to war.
But so many of us won’t exercise the freedoms we have to speak up for truth and justice, for fear of being accused of “offending” someone, and being called names. This week, take some time to really examine what you believe and what your money is supporting. Here are some places to start:
Dig for answers, and when the opportunity comes, speak up for truth.