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September 24, 2007

Most people seem to place their career at number one on their priority list. If something is good for your career, you do it. If something could be bad for your career, you don't do it. A career seems to be the reason for being of too many people. This is one reason politicians are so willing to sell out those they're supposed to represent. If they can find a powerful lobby that can help their political career, that lobby will virtually control the career-minded politician no matter what the negative results will be for the rest of the world. Television evangelist and sometimes politician Marion 'Pat' Robertson made a statement that brings this mindset out in the open. He was sued for libel by three law professors at Regent University, which he founded. The three professors had filed a complaint with the American Bar Association against Robertson for forcing out the law school's dean. According to an AP report, the three sued him for $10 million each. In 1998 the case was settled out of court. However, the letter Robertson wrote that brought about the suit reveals himself to be nothing but a wealthy materialistic spoiled son of a senator who couldn't grasp an ideal if his bank account depended on it. The 'my career over all' attitude he reveals is what is currently infecting millions of people today and is holding back true progress. He compared the three professors to Jim Jones and David Koresh because they dared to stand up for what they felt was right at the risk of losing their careers. Robertson's exact words in the letter were, 'No rational professional person seeks to destroy the source of his own employment and career advancement. Only cultists after the order of Jim Jones or the Branch Davidians do such things.' This crippling career-first mentality makes revolutionary change impossible. The whole idea of a revolution is to do away with the corrupt status quo. If people are afraid to put their career in jeopardy, which is usually made possible by the current established order, how can they ever cross over into revolution and profound change and progress? Whatever ideals they embrace that motivates them to revolution will be suffocated by the heavy blanket of careerism. When we look at the American Revolution, we see people who were very successful under the colonial system not only take part in it, but also lead it. People like George Washington, who owned huge plantations and who greatly profited by having a virtually guaranteed buyer of his products in the mother country, while others like John Adams were successful lawyers and others still, like Thomas Jefferson, were successful under the colonial system as both farmers and lawyers. Yet, they believed their ideals were much more important than their careers and the financial situation of themselves and their families. We should never forget the man who actually started the Revolution, Sam Adams. Sam Adams inherited the family business, a brewery, but neglected his career because he spent all his time working to get the American Revolution started. Needless to say, the family business failed. It wasn't only the famous people like Jefferson, Washington, Adams, etc., who were willing to pay a very high price for liberty and its progress. Thousands of new Americans paid a very heavy price for their altruism and desire to make a better world. And it wasn't just the soldiers and Minutemen who paid. Living in today's society, it's incredible to realize the support women of that time gave to the cause of freedom and progress. One moving example is found in the writings of a Mrs. Davis, who was the wife of a Minuteman by the name of Isaac Davis.* Isaac took part in the fight against British troops who were ordered to destroy the weapons the citizens and anti-government rebels had at Concord, Massachusetts. This was the first time rebels fired on government troops. Mrs. Davis wrote, 'Isaac Davis was my husband. He was then thirty years of age. We had four children; the youngest about fifteen months old. They were all unwell when he left me, in the morning; some of them with the canker-rash. 'The alarm was given early in the morning, and my husband lost no time in making ready to go to Concord with his company. My husband said but little that morning. He seemed serious and thoughtful; but never seemed to hesitate. He only said, 'Take good care of the children,' and was soon out of sight. 'In the afternoon he was brought home a corpse. He was placed in my bedroom till the funeral.' What an exceptional woman! She loved the ideals of liberty and progress so much, she was willing to sacrifice her family life for them. She and her husband were capable of seeing the big picture and would not let anything stand in their way that would prevent them from fighting for it. To me, this is true patriotism of the highest order, and well placed. It was not placed in the government, as people tend to do today. Instead, it was placed where it belongs and can do the most good--in true ideals such as freedom and liberty, not in government. The case of Isaac Davis and his family demonstrates that real freedom has a very high costly price. Not only did Isaac pay the price with his life, his wife paid it with the loss of her husband and in all probability the loss of her only source of income. Their children paid the price with the loss of their father and their provider. Yet, they did it anyway. We need to realize that the price is still just as high today. Are we willing to pay it? *Bart McDowell, The Revolutionary War, (National Geographic Society, 1967) 44

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Robert L. Johnson's picture
Columns on STR: 92

Robert Johnson is a paralegal and a freelance writer in Florida. He was raised Roman Catholic, but after reading Thomas Paine's The Age of Reason, he became a Deist. In 1993 he founded the World Union of Deists and in 1996 he launched the first web site devoted to Deism,  He is listed in Who's Who in Hell and is the author of Deism: A Revolution in Religion, A Revolution in You and An Answer to C.S. Lewis' Mere Christianity.  He wrote the introduction to The Age of Reason, The Complete Edition and also writes for