Election 2016-Candidate Review: Bernie Sanders

This will begin a series of posts that examines each major candidate in the 2016 Presidential race. I plan on doing a post over Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump, Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, Ben Carson, and Bernie Sanders. I may do others if time permits. My goal is to educate voters on what each candidate stands for. I won’t even come close to covering all the issues, but I want to provide a basic idea of some big ones. I will provide my opinion, of course. But ultimately, the choice of who you vote for is up to you. With that I will begin with Bernie Sanders.

Economics:

“Governmental programs are often faceless and unsustainable. Handouts create more dependency in the populace, decreasing overall societal productivity and depleting the resources of the agencies providing the handouts. The taxpayer base decreases, the dependent population increases, and taxpayer money runs out. Historically, when governments have taken on the responsibility of social warfare from cradle to the grave, societies have ended up with a small group of elites at the top who own and control everything, a rapidly vanishing middle class, and a greatly expanded dependent class.”- Dr. Ben Carson, A More Perfect Union.

A lot of college students and young adults today are enamored with Bernie Sanders, a self-proclaimed “democratic socialist.” Truthfully, I don’t get it. Socialism never actually helps the poor. The redistribution of wealth only creates a larger poor class and widens the gap between the wealthy elites and the lower class. It’s immoral and leaves no opportunity for the lower class to rise out of poverty. It’s oppressive.

The best way to assist the poor is for the private sector to establish their own programs. A huge amount of wealth in this country is found in businesses and churches. The government should do what it can to support the growth of good business, particularly small businesses. Historically in capitalist America, the wealthy business owners have been extremely generous with what they have made. Of course there are some who aren’t. You can’t force generosity. When you do, it ceases to become generosity. It’s theft. Socialism is theft. It’s completely unsustainable.

Bernie is also for raising the minimum wage to $15/hour nationally. The problem is that doing so is economic suicide. Our economy can’t support that. I learned this in high school economics class, for crying out loud. Raising the minimum wage like that will lead to higher unemployment. Companies, especially small businesses would not be able to sustain having an adequate amount of employees. A fewer number of employees would have to do just as much work, if not more to keep the business afloat. This would lead big companies like McDonald’s to move more towards automated cashiers, thus eliminating jobs. It would also make the prices of goods go up. In order to make a profit, your Big Mac may go from $4 to $6, for example. The cost of living would go up. That merely creates a constant cycle of having to raise the minimum wage. Minimum wage is not meant to sustain a family. This is for people who need a job to get through school or are in between jobs and need to keep an income. It isn’t supposed to be a living wage, that’s why it’s minimum. I don’t mean to be insensitive, but if you want to make more than minimum wage, you have to be a skilled worker. That doesn’t mean you need to go to college. My dad never did and he makes a pretty comfortable income. But he’s also skilled at what he does. Minimum wage jobs require no skills. That’s why high school students are able to preform those jobs proficiently. Minimum wage increases only hurt the economy.

Social Issues:

Bernie Sanders has a lifetime record of being pro-choice. I don’t even like that term. He is a pro-abort. It’s not about choice. The innocent baby doesn’t get one. They just literally get ripped apart and slaughtered. Not only does he believe in the “woman’s right to choose,” he voted in favor of partial-birth abortion. Partial-birth abortion is completely sadistic and purely evil, as is all abortion. He wants to ban all “anti-abortion limitations.” Because of things like this, he is the favorite candidate among most feminist groups. I’ve got news for you; this isn’t about women’s rights. It’s about the most fundamental human right of all: the right to life. I don’t like eliminating a candidate on one issue alone. However, when it comes to abortion I do. Any candidate who is a pro-abort, I will never vote for. I don’t want to vote for mass murder. Nearly 60,000,000 innocent babies have been murdered since Roe v. Wade in the United States. That’s a holocaust and I won’t stand for it.

Bernie is also in favor of affirmative action. Listen, I’m not blind. I know racism still exists today in many different ways. However, isn’t true equality supposed to be equal treatment? I mean, it sounds like a no-brainer, but I’m starting to wonder. Affirmative action essentially caters to minority groups, while leaving the “evil” majority in the dark. I’m not saying I’m oppressed by affirmative action, but I also don’t think it is true equality. I’m an advocate for equal opportunities based on ability and drive, not based on race or religion.

Gun Control:

I’m giving this issue it’s own category. There are some who believe more restrictive gun laws will solve the problem of gun violence. Bernie Sanders is one of them. However, it doesn’t make logical sense. Someone who obeys the law will buy a gun legally and use it legally. A criminal will get a gun illegally off the street (because you can’t buy a gun with a criminal record now) and use it illegally. It’s really that simple. I can give you story after story of people who stopped a potential mass shooting because they were legally permitted to carry a firearm. Now, if a law-abiding citizen is going to have a carry permit, they had better have adequate training with their firearm. And the vast majority of them are. I plan to become a legal gun owner in the near future. I also obey the law. I don’t anticipate any issues. I currently live in Chicago where gun violence is an enormous issue. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that Chicago has some of the strictest gun laws in the nation, yet the gun crime rate is astronomical. It’s due largely to gang violence (where guns are acquired illegally) and the fact that a law-abiding citizen cannot acquire a weapon for self-defense without jumping through a long series of hoops.

Foreign Policy:

Bernie Sanders believes that we have a moral responsibility to reach out to Syrian refugees. I agree. However, I do not believe we should bring them into the United States without the proper vetting process. As we saw with Tashfeen Malik, one of the San Bernardino shooters, the vetting process is not enough. Our intelligence simply missed the mark. These people were radicalized.

Let’s be clear: The situation in Syria is absolutely horrifying. Millions of Syrians have been forced to leave their homes and flee from ISIS and the evils of radical Islam. They need help. The question is, how do we go about it? Many of those refugees are fleeing to other parts of Syria. Other refugees are going to the surrounding countries of Turkey, Lebanon, and Jordan. However, there are some numbers that seemed to be overlooked when we discuss this topic. In September, data from the European Union published in National Review indicates that 4 out of 5 (80%) of the labeled “Syrian refugees” are not even coming from Syria. Most of the people coming into Europe, and now the United States, are migrants fleeing their countries for other reasons, presumably economic reasons.

Still, the question remains: What should the United States do with the migrants seeking to get in now? Surely the United States can adequately vet the incoming migrants, right? According to the intelligence community, that is not the case. The United States cannot do a proper background check on the incoming migrants because there is simply no information to go on. The government of Syria certainly has nothing on these people (not that they would cooperate with us anyway). So, according to American Thinker, all of the information we get to vet these supposed refugees comes from a single source: the refugee. Essentially all a radicalized militant has to do to be cleared is lie. An article from The Blaze mentioned that it’s already nearly impossible to distinguish a fake Syrian passport from a legitimate one.

As a Christian, I want to apply this to my faith. Now several times throughout the Old and New Testaments the Bible tells us to welcome and care the foreigner. Is there a line between security and caring for the oppressed? I don’t even think that’s the point. Hear my heart. Christians certainly have the duty to pray for those that are facing the dangers of war-torn Syria. How else can we care for them? We can certainly volunteer for missions and relief aid. We can also freely give our monetary resources to these kinds of efforts. I really don’t think that’s a bad option at all. That still doesn’t answer the question of what the United States government should do. Don’t we as a nation have an obligation to help these people?

I’m certainly an advocate for helping those who really need it when we can. However, I would like to suggest that we not diminish the Gospel to the level of government. That is not the purpose of our government. That is the purpose of the Church of Jesus Christ. The United States government is bound by oath to protect her citizens first. The government is supposed to “provide for the common defence” as the Constitution of the United States says. Allowing migrants in while knowing that there is a real and credible threat is both foolish and a failure to fulfill the purpose that was intended for our government.

It is also important to note that ISIS vowed to infiltrate western nations by taking advantage of this “refugee crisis.” Their goal is to lace thousands of their own militants with the hundreds of thousands of migrants. When we have this sort of threat is it really unreasonable to seek tighter security before we act? I don’t personally know a single person that wants to keep true refugees out. The call is simply for a better assurance of security than what we have now. Considering the numbers I mentioned above, I think this is more than reasonable. The United States has a sworn duty to protect her people.

Finally, we get to the final question. Is that stance un-Christian? The simple answer is no. Let me explain why. The Bible never says how we are to care for the poor and oppressed. There are several ways one can go about helping. Some of those were mentioned above. Just because I am not advocating for unrestricted admittance into the States does not mean I don’t care for the oppressed or the foreigner. Also, I believe a Christian is allowed to adhere to a form nationalism, or patriotism. We are certainly allowed to care about our own country and our own people. That’s not selfish and that’s not putting country before God and what He commanded us to do. Additionally, I believe it is just as immoral to potentially risk the lives of over 300 million other people so we can fulfill our “duty.” Let’s be real, that’s just as much of a failure to care for our neighbor as doing nothing for refugees is. According to Matt Walsh, the FBI testified that it does not have “the ability to conduct background checks on all 10,000 refugees.” If we turn our own country into a war zone, is that really improving the plight of a refugee at all?

It’s not that I don’t care about the refugee. I truly do, and I think action is required. I propose that we get rid of the root problem: ISIS. If they will not lay down their arms and end their reign of terror, then they must be met with tremendous force. It is only then that the life of the Syrian who had been displaced by war can truly be made better. Then they are able to live peacefully in their homeland. That’s what they really want. I care for the refugee, but I also care about security. I’m not talking about my own security. I’m talking about the security of 300 million of my fellow Americans and the true refugee.

Bernie also said that climate change is more of a national security threat than ISIS is. That’s completely ludicrous. We need a Commander-in-Chief that can identify the enemy and take the proper action to eliminate the threat. The President’s first job is to protect the American people. I don’t think Bernie Sanders is capable of doing that domestically, let alone on an international level.

Conclusion:

I don’t get the infatuation with Bernie Sanders. On policy, I give Bernie Sanders a resounding “F.” I would not vote for Mr. Sanders in any circumstance. Sorry for the length of this post, but I have a lot to say on the subject. I hope to continue this series very soon. I hope you found this informative and will at least consider what I said. I think an educated voter is key to restoring the United States to what the founding fathers dreamed it would be.

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3 replies

  1. I think you have done a terrific job of laying out the important issues here and I agree whole hearted that Bernie Sanders should not be our next President. We are not a socialized nation (yet) and do not by any means need to become one. Thank you for sharing this and I look forward to your next in this series.

  2. Reblogged this on Sue's Pen2PaperBlog and commented:
    With elections not far off there is much to consider. Austin Coons is helping us to be more informed by putting forth a series about the candidates which may be helpful to many.

Luke 21:36 "Watch therefore, and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man."

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