To the editor:
Benjamin Franklin once said, "Only a virtuous people are capable of freedom. As nations become corrupt and vicious, they need more masters."
Thomas Jefferson said, "There is a 'natural' aristocracy among men. The grounds of this are 'virtue and talent.'"
Virtuous people continually strive for a higher moral standard for themselves, their families and their communities. The results others see in these individuals always are several steps behind from where they know they should be.
In a committed, humble and forever pride-fighting honesty, they waste no time in abeyance or justification. The deepest beliefs of people are reflected in their actions.
They don't just "act" like adults; they are adults.
Perhaps the largest part of virtue isn't perfection - it's direction. A common example of someone starting late on this path would be a man who makes the fundamental choice to be a better husband and father.
He starts climbing up and over the defeated dead bodies of his corruptive and destructive habits. He locks arms solidly with the Lord for lift and steadiness, vowing to never let go.
Addiction programs and regular church attendance become educational points and outlets. He realizes virtue is not inherited but is sought after in every moment.
Fighting his pride to justify his inevitable human failures is almost too much, but he presses on. This struggle involves constant failure and success, but it strengthens his character to a fine point. He brings higher principles and enlightenment to his entire family.
Their minds are free to focus on personal, social and spiritual growth, replacing the regular contentious disputes of old and the resulting loop of it over and over in their minds.
There still are, and may always be, some days that just have to be written off.
However, he realizes principles such as honesty, kindness, love, long suffering, charity and forgiveness have to be lived twice as solidly by him before he can expect his family to accept the standards he is setting.
His example becomes legendary for generations of his children. Like a hand catching them, it will serve to guide them on a narrow path when darkness momentarily leaves them lost.
He doesn't smoke dope at the end of his life because of cancer, leaving his family a corrupted final example. Nor does he get baked and play with his kids and expect a Father of the Year award. Nor does he become a community leader and with an open mind consider letting drug dealers open up shop in his community. He recognizes right off the difference between drugs and their dealers, and businessmen and health care.
Morally corrupt political leaders, thieves, drug dealers, child molesters, and Satan himself should receive no respect nor quarter from any virtuous people.
See you Tuesday, Craig City Council.
Patrick Wayne Germond