Is self-reliance a bad thing?

Is self-reliance a bad thing?

November 6th, 2011 in Opinion Free Press

A story by ABC News began, "At a million-dollar San Francisco fundraiser today, President Obama warned his recession-battered supporters that if he loses the 2012 election it could herald a new, painful era of self-reliance in America."

The president listed areas in which he believes the American people will be forced to rely less on government if he loses next year: their personal health, paying for college, etc.

But isn't it troubling that the idea of self-reliance -- of not expecting government to solve all the challenges of life -- is readily dismissed these days as unrealistic, or even unkind? Is it "kind" to trap Americans in long-term dependence on government programs?

Self-reliance is not always easy. But a commitment to doing the best one can for oneself before seeking government help is one of the traits that made our country great. We shouldn't abandon it.