Even when you know better, you still do it

On my last post I highlighted one of Oprah's favorite phrases: "When people know better, they do better." This is a statement that can only be made by a true liberal. Since liberals take the view that all human beings are intrinsically good, it makes sense they would believe people just need the proper education in order to make good choices.

You hear it all the time. Feminists believe the way to cut down on the number of abortions is to educate young people about contraception; Obama believes all we need to do to improve international relations is "make nice" with Iraqis and Afghanis -- and all we need to do to help low-income Americans is give them a free college education and pump more money into their pockets. With money, education, and a loving hand, say liberals, people will be armed with the tools they need in order to make good decisions.

This would surely be a Utopia if it were true. I wish it were true! Fortunately, I know better. All conservatives know better -- not because they're smarter (although that's generally true, too) but because they understand the nature of people. They accept that all people are not equal -- no matter how politically incorrect it sounds. All people may have been "created equal" under God and our Constitution, and they are certainly entitled to the same opportunities -- but what they do with their inherited worth and opportunities will determine what kind of person they will be. Is Charles Manson equal to Mother Theresa? Is Jeffrey Dahmer equal to Martin Luther King, Jr.? The answer is obvious to a conservative. To a liberal, the answer is, "Depends." And to a real left-winger (think Dead Man Walking) the answer is "Yes."

Now before you go thinking I have no heart (as conservatives are often accused of), I am very sympathetic to the reasons why a person turns sour. As with most things in life, it all goes back to our upbringing. Our jails are not filled with people who came from two-parent, happy, loving homes; and I have addressed the importance of childhood in a book. But the fact remains that we can't make all people have a happy, healthy childhood; and we can't make people choose to do good simply by providing them with the proper education and job opportunities. There will always be people who squander their education or money. The whys aren't really important (except to a liberal) because no matter how much you try to change this aspect of human nature, it will always come back.

It's a sad reality, I admit. But, then, we don't live in Utopia.

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