I'm telling you, this is one very different part of the country this Southwest Missouri. I see things and I keep seeing things I can't even imagine prior to being here, let alone not seeing them before now.
Here's the first one I'll mention so far-- it's a billboard, apparently by and from the Catholic Church and it's in Springfield. It says:
"CATHOLICISM: THE BIGGEST OBSTACLE TO SOCIALISM"
Because, after all, isn't that--Socialism--one of the biggest ongoing fears of most Americans, in general, but Right Wingers and Republicans, more specifically, since the core of Communism died with the old Soviet Union and China as we knew them?
God forbid we have Socialism, right?
Except I can't think of a more fair, just, moral and even "Christian" or "Christ-like" political system than Socialism, personally, when you think about it.
These, after all, are the definitions of the big, ugly Socialism:
1) any of various economic and political theories advocating collective or governmental ownership and administration of the means of production and distribution of goods
2) a : a system of society or group living in which there is no private property
b : a system or condition of society in which the means of production are owned and controlled by the state
3) : a stage of society in Marxist theory transitional between capitalism and communism and distinguished by unequal distribution of goods and pay according to work done.
And face it, we're never, ever going to have total ownership of anything in this country, let's be real here. No one's talking about or realistically promoting anything like total Socialism or, again, total ownership of production by "the state", by the government.
That said, Socialism, in various degrees, exists over much of the free world and it's certainly in existence here, now, in America, much to a lot of people's dislike and even though, to others of us, there isn't near enough practiced here.
The only things we'd push for in this country is that the gross inequities and inequalities of, as a best comparison and example, the obscenely wealthy vs. the horribly immorality of the extremely poor.
And it was Jesus Christ himself who ran the "money changers" out of the temple, as a reminder and said things like
--"It is easier for a camel to go through a needle's eye than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God"
--"...go, sell what you own and give the money to the poor and you will have treasure in heaven..." and this one: "
--"Go to now, ye rich men, weep and howl for your miseries that shall come upon you. Your riches are corrupted, and your garments are motheaten. Your gold and silver is cankered; and the rust of them shall be a witness against you, and shall eat your flesh as it were fire. Ye have heaped treasure together for the last days”
Suffice to say, Jesus was well known as anything but a fan of the wealthy. Keeping "safety nets" for the very poor of us is the only decent, humane, moral and yes, even "Christian" thing to do. And sure, it shouldn't be set up so it makes for an "easy ride" one can be on perpetually but our current systems of assistance to the poor and food stamps and unemployment insurance is anything but.
What a Capitalist racket that's turned out to be. No wonder they want to fight "Socialism."