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The survey says ... liberals are stingier
St. Paul Pioneer Press ^ | 12/23/2008 | Nicholas Kristof

Posted on 12/23/2008 5:28:09 AM PST by rhema

This holiday season is a time to examine who's been naughty and who's been nice, but I'm unhappy with my findings. The problem is this: We liberals are personally stingy.

Liberals show tremendous compassion in pushing for generous government spending to help the neediest people at home and abroad. Yet, when it comes to individual contributions to charitable causes, liberals are cheapskates.

Arthur Brooks, the author of a book on donors to charity, "Who Really Cares," cites data that households headed by conservatives give 30 percent more to charity than households headed by liberals. A study by Google found an even greater disproportion: Average annual contributions reported by conservatives were almost double those of liberals.

Other research has reached similar conclusions. The "generosity index" from the Catalogue for Philanthropy typically finds that red states are the most likely to give to nonprofits, while Northeastern states are least likely to do so.

The upshot is that Democrats, who speak passionately about the hungry and homeless, personally fork over less money to charity than Republicans — the ones who try to cut health insurance for children.

"When I started doing research on charity," Brooks wrote, "I expected to find that political liberals — who, I believed, genuinely cared more about others than conservatives did — would turn out to be the most privately charitable people. So when my early findings led me to the opposite conclusion, I assumed I had made some sort of technical error. I re-ran analyses. I got new data. Nothing worked. In the end, I had no option but to change my views." Something similar is true internationally. European countries seem to show more compassion than the United States in providing safety nets for the poor, and they give far more humanitarian foreign aid per capita than the United States does. But as individuals, Europeans are far less charitable than Americans.

Americans give sums to charity equivalent to 1.67 percent of GNP, according to a terrific new book, "Philanthrocapitalism," by Matthew Bishop and Michael Green. The British are second, with 0.73 percent, while the stingiest people on the list are the French, at 0.14 percent.

(Looking away from politics, there's evidence that one of the most generous groups in the United States is gays. Researchers believe that is because they are less likely to have rapacious heirs pushing to keep wealth in the family.)

When liberals see the data on giving, they tend to protest that conservatives look good only because they shower dollars on churches — that a fair amount of that money isn't helping the poor but simply constructing lavish spires.

It's true that religion is the essential reason conservatives give more, and religious liberals are as generous as religious conservatives. Among the stingiest of the stingy are secular conservatives.

According to Google's figures, if donations to all religious organizations are excluded, liberals give slightly more to charity than conservatives do. But Brooks says that if measuring by the percentage of income given, conservatives are more generous than liberals even to secular causes.

In any case, if conservative donations often end up building extravagant churches, liberal donations frequently sustain art museums, symphonies, schools and universities that cater to the well-off. (It's great to support the arts and education, but they're not the same as charity for the needy. And some research suggests that donations to education actually increase inequality, because they go mostly to elite institutions attended by the wealthy.)

Conservatives also appear to be more generous than liberals in nonfinancial ways. People in red states are considerably more likely to volunteer for good causes, and conservatives give blood more often. If liberals and moderates gave blood as often as conservatives, Brooks said, the U.S. blood supply would increase by 45 percent.

So, you've guessed it! This column is a transparent attempt this holiday season to shame liberals into being more charitable. Since I often scold Republicans for being callous in their policies toward the needy, it seems only fair to reproach Democrats for being cheap in their private donations. What I want for Christmas is a healthy competition between left and right to see who actually does more for the neediest.

Of course, given the economic pinch these days, charity isn't on the top of anyone's agenda. Yet, the financial ability to contribute to charity and the willingness to do so are strikingly unrelated. Amazingly, the working poor, who have the least resources, somehow manage to be more generous as a percentage of income than the middle class.

So, even in tough times, there are ways to help. Come on, liberals, redeem yourselves, and put your wallets where your hearts are.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial; US: Minnesota
KEYWORDS: charity; cheap; conservative; democrats; donations; generosity; left; liberal; philanthropy
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1 posted on 12/23/2008 5:28:10 AM PST by rhema
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To: rhema

Captain Obvious, pick up the red phone.


2 posted on 12/23/2008 5:29:01 AM PST by MrB (The 0bamanation: Marxism, Infanticide, Appeasement, Depression, Thuggery, and Censorship)
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To: rhema


Ephesians 4:28
28 Those who have been stealing must never steal again. Instead, they must work. They must do something useful with their own hands. Then they will have something to give to people in need.

Yes, even when the theft is done “by consensus” through the government, it is still theft.


2 Corinthians 9:7
7 You should each give what you have decided in your heart to give. You shouldn’t give if you don’t want to. You shouldn’t give because you are forced to. God loves a cheerful giver.

This, also, precludes socialism as “charity”. People should give under no coersion, and that’s all government is - force.


3 posted on 12/23/2008 5:33:38 AM PST by MrB (The 0bamanation: Marxism, Infanticide, Appeasement, Depression, Thuggery, and Censorship)
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To: rhema

...Unless they have their mitts on **your** money...


4 posted on 12/23/2008 5:33:41 AM PST by xcamel (The urge to save humanity is always a false front for the urge to rule it. - H. L. Mencken)
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To: rhema
They needed to do a study to figure this out?!?

Liberals love to "give 'till it hurts.....someone else". It's all about their "good intentions" (which are paving material for the road to a certain very warm location).

5 posted on 12/23/2008 5:33:59 AM PST by Pablo64 (Political Correctness is a DISEASE. <==> TRUTH is the CURE.)
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To: rhema
Liberals show tremendous compassion in pushing for generous government spending to help the neediest people at home and abroad.

It's also funny how liberals think forcing people to give money to bureaucrats and foreign dictators shows "tremendous compassion."

6 posted on 12/23/2008 5:36:46 AM PST by Tribune7 (Obama wants to put the same crowd that ran Fannie Mae in charge of health care)
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To: rhema
Liberals show tremendous compassion in pushing for generous government spending spending other people's money to help the neediest people at home and abroad.

7 posted on 12/23/2008 5:37:53 AM PST by Aquinasfan (When you find "Sola Scriptura" in the Bible, let me know)
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To: rhema
While we're on the subject of libs and their fondness for gov't sponsored giveaways....

Dependence begets subservience and venality, suffocates the germ of virtue, and prepares fit tools for the designs of ambition.

Thomas Jefferson

8 posted on 12/23/2008 5:38:55 AM PST by mewzilla (In politics the middle way is none at all. John Adams)
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To: MrB
Captain Obvious, pick up the red phone.

Chuckle.

9 posted on 12/23/2008 5:39:33 AM PST by MaggieCarta (We're all Detroiters now.)
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To: rhema
I read the article earlier this morning in my paper. The only problem I have with his story, and he does point it out is if you drop religious giving, conservatives are slightly stingier than liberals.

But religious giving is often done out of the feeling of requirement, guilt, the rules of membership, peer pressure when the plate is passed and other prompters that pinch the giving nerve. Yes, I do know that many also give from the heart and give generously. But there are also many who give out of perceived obligation.

10 posted on 12/23/2008 5:39:43 AM PST by joesbucks (Sarah Palin: "I believe John McCain is the best leader that we have in the nation right now,)
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To: rhema

Hope I didn’t pay for this study...


11 posted on 12/23/2008 5:40:23 AM PST by MaggieCarta (We're all Detroiters now.)
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To: MaggieCarta

Dream on!


12 posted on 12/23/2008 5:41:24 AM PST by WayneS (Respect the 2nd Amendment; Repeal the 16th)
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To: rhema

13 posted on 12/23/2008 5:41:40 AM PST by xcamel (The urge to save humanity is always a false front for the urge to rule it. - H. L. Mencken)
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To: joesbucks

Compulsion and obligation are not a (legitimate) part of religious giving. See my 2 Cor 9:7 post above.

The religious people I know that give to their church do so because they know where it is going to be used and approve of that expenditure.

Conversely, when “charity” is done through socialist policy, we also know where it is going to be used - to further incentivize destructive decisions.


14 posted on 12/23/2008 5:43:01 AM PST by MrB (The 0bamanation: Marxism, Infanticide, Appeasement, Depression, Thuggery, and Censorship)
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To: rhema
"When I started doing research on charity," Brooks wrote, "I expected to find that political liberals — who, I believed, genuinely cared more about others than conservatives did — would turn out to be the most privately charitable people. So when my early findings led me to the opposite conclusion, I assumed I had made some sort of technical error. I re-ran analyses. I got new data. Nothing worked. In the end, I had no option but to change my views."

That's the real shocker here. Liberals who imagine themselves to be freethinkers are far more dogmatic than the Christians that they criticize.

Given the evidence, the author reconsidered his dogmatic beliefs. This is a rarity for liberals, who normally deal with contradictory evidence by dismissing it or attacking the messenger.

15 posted on 12/23/2008 5:43:08 AM PST by Aquinasfan (When you find "Sola Scriptura" in the Bible, let me know)
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To: MrB
Obvious to you and me, yes. But St. Paul (in whose daily this editorial was published) hasn't elected a Republican to the state legislature since I can't remember when. Maybe the editorial will soften a few hard liberal hearts.

And with any luck, some Obama people will read and heed it . . . before they begin to dispense the most lavish governmental largesse we've seen in our lifetimes.

16 posted on 12/23/2008 5:44:49 AM PST by rhema ("Break the conventions; keep the commandments." -- G. K. Chesterton)
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To: rhema

Conservatives should stop donating money to charities.

We give money to the very people who vote in socualists. Some progams we support lobbies congress for laws that run counter to our beliefs.

We provide the funds for the destruction of our own country and way of like.


17 posted on 12/23/2008 5:45:49 AM PST by stockpirate (ACORN voter fraud, illegal campaign donations, COLB, where is the conservative anger?)
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To: rhema
Kristoff is a damn idiot.

There are so many contradictions in this pap that I won't even try to show them.

Suffice to say, liberals love to spend money, read: taxes, as long as it's not their money.

And liberals, being the dumb asses that they are, do not realize that taxes are everybody's money.

18 posted on 12/23/2008 5:45:59 AM PST by OldSmaj (Death to islam. No to Hussein. BO stinks.)
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To: WayneS

You are likely quite right.


19 posted on 12/23/2008 5:46:29 AM PST by MaggieCarta (We're all Detroiters now.)
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To: rhema

Well, they’re stingier with their own money.

Other people’s money, they freely redistribute!


20 posted on 12/23/2008 5:48:02 AM PST by NeoConfederate
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To: rhema
some Obama people will read and heed it

Liberals truly believe that their support for socialism fully satisfies their requirement for charity.

Yeah, they'll "heed" it by calling for more tax and spend policy.

21 posted on 12/23/2008 5:50:06 AM PST by MrB (The 0bamanation: Marxism, Infanticide, Appeasement, Depression, Thuggery, and Censorship)
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To: joesbucks

I find that a minor quibble. You don’t even attempt to quantify the two sides. I am certain that the impulse to benefit our fellow men through our religious communities is 3-4 times larger than the immediate social factors you describe, especially for larger gifts.

Since you are willing to see the other hand, the other hand also is weighted by the fact that the most EFFECTIVE charities are religious. No charities approach the Salvation Army, Catholic Charities, Christian Disaster Relief...etc etc in the ratio of benefits provided to contributions.


22 posted on 12/23/2008 5:50:30 AM PST by sgtyork (The secret of happiness is freedom, and the secret of freedom, courage. Thucydides)
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To: joesbucks
But there are also many who give out of perceived obligation.

I believe that I am obligated to give to charity, but not out of some sort of external "guilt."

I have to say that I'm not religious, and don't regularly attend a synagogue, though I do have a very strong belief in G-d, and I do consider myself Jewish. I just believe that I have an obligation as a human being to help those less fortunate. I take on that obligation freely, and without any outside prompting. But I won't hold anyone else to the same standard.

I also reject the call to try to convince others to do so as well. I am against government handouts, because it's simply stealing. And it gives people a reason to not give, where they might do so on their own. It relieves them of any personal responsibility. People should be allowed to give if they have a calling to do so, and not be held to ridicule or guilt. Unless they talk about how wonderful their government handouts are, and it turns out they actually give little or nothing of their own. Then they need to be mocked.

Mark

23 posted on 12/23/2008 5:52:19 AM PST by MarkL (Do I really look like a guy with a plan?)
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To: joesbucks

How can you “drop religious giving” from the charitible efforts of conservatives?

That’s like saying, if you drop George Soros-influenced donations from Barack Obama’s presidential campaign funding, he took in less money than McCain.


24 posted on 12/23/2008 5:53:35 AM PST by WayneS (Respect the 2nd Amendment; Repeal the 16th)
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To: rhema

Libs live the title of a Danny DeVito movie, “Other Peoples’ Money”.


25 posted on 12/23/2008 5:53:42 AM PST by PzLdr ("The Emperor is not as forgiving as I am" - Darth Vader)
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To: MarkL

They need to be mocked... yes.

I bring their conscience to the fore with the statement:
“You DO realize that your support for socialism in no way satisfies your personal, individual moreal requirement to help the needy, don’t you?”

Re: “relieves them of any personal responsibility”
I’ve actually heard libs denounce charity because charitable organizations “let gov’t off the hook” for helping people like they should.


26 posted on 12/23/2008 5:56:41 AM PST by MrB (The 0bamanation: Marxism, Infanticide, Appeasement, Depression, Thuggery, and Censorship)
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To: MrB

Many will; some won’t. Any movement toward moral, responsible behavior — whether it’s abortion, gay marriage, or whatever — gains traction one heart or conscience at a time.


27 posted on 12/23/2008 5:57:05 AM PST by rhema ("Break the conventions; keep the commandments." -- G. K. Chesterton)
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To: joesbucks
But religious giving is often done out of the feeling of requirement, guilt, the rules of membership, peer pressure when the plate is passed and other prompters that pinch the giving nerve.

I couldn't agree less. Christ followers give from the heart and from their blessings. Those who feel guilt, peer pressure or a requirement stop attending quickly after they start.

28 posted on 12/23/2008 6:02:58 AM PST by The Brush
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To: rhema
The charities I primarily donate to:

Salvation Army
Boy Scouts of America
Soldiers' Angels
Wounded Warrior

Sorry to burst Mr Kristof's bubble!

29 posted on 12/23/2008 6:04:37 AM PST by Rummyfan (Iraq: it's not about Iraq anymore, it's about the USA!)
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To: WayneS
I don't see the correlation between church charitable giving and Soros influenced giving on a person to person scale. What I mean by person to person is not the wealthy that funneled money to Obama through 529s but rather average person contributions that went directly to Obama out of desire for him to become president.

If churches stopped passing the plate, making giving/tithing a part of membership and having giving envelopes, church giving would drop dramatically.

30 posted on 12/23/2008 6:05:15 AM PST by joesbucks (Sarah Palin: "I believe John McCain is the best leader that we have in the nation right now,)
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To: rhema
DUH!
31 posted on 12/23/2008 6:08:10 AM PST by Arrowhead1952 (The main stream media lied - America died.)
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To: joesbucks

You must be a secular conservative! Belonging to a church is a private activity. People can throw $1 into a plate. If they don’t want to donate they become unchurched.

Your opinion is content free!


32 posted on 12/23/2008 6:09:41 AM PST by sobieski
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To: xcamel
...Unless they have their mitts on **your** money...

I think Rush had this for his morning update the other day. KLBJ AM is talking about this today. Not many libs calling in today.

33 posted on 12/23/2008 6:10:43 AM PST by Arrowhead1952 (The main stream media lied - America died.)
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To: Arrowhead1952

Here, yes. On the Daily Kos, it’d be akin to a revelation that the earth isn’t flat.


34 posted on 12/23/2008 6:11:10 AM PST by rhema ("Break the conventions; keep the commandments." -- G. K. Chesterton)
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To: joesbucks
If churches stopped passing the plate, making giving/tithing a part of membership and having giving envelopes, church giving would drop dramatically.

Got anything beside conjecture to back this up?

The highest cashflow church in our area has no "plate", just envelopes and the ability to take auto-tithing through electronic transfer.

35 posted on 12/23/2008 6:11:14 AM PST by MrB (The 0bamanation: Marxism, Infanticide, Appeasement, Depression, Thuggery, and Censorship)
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To: joesbucks
It was a simple analogy, NOT a direct comaprison.

Never mind.

I have looked at your other posts and I have no intention of being dragged into an inane argument with you this morning.

Bye now!

36 posted on 12/23/2008 6:13:28 AM PST by WayneS (Respect the 2nd Amendment; Repeal the 16th)
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To: WayneS
OOPS. Forgot to turn off the underlining!
37 posted on 12/23/2008 6:14:35 AM PST by WayneS (Respect the 2nd Amendment; Repeal the 16th)
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To: rhema
"When I started doing research on charity," Brooks wrote, "I expected to find that political liberals — who, I believed, genuinely cared more about others than conservatives did — ..."

Well, there's your mistake, Brooksie. You people are so full of yourselves, you can't see the forest for the trees. But when it comes down to brass tacks, you're a bunch of hypocrites who talk a good game, but in the end want the government (i.e., we taxpayers) to pick up the tab for all of your silly programs.

38 posted on 12/23/2008 6:18:41 AM PST by Allegra
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To: rhema

Talk is cheap...anyone can claim to be kind, caring and for all humanity...However, putting your “money where your mouth is” and taking action for what you PREACH is what separates the true givers from the hypocrites.

I love the book of James especially these verses:

James 2:14-16 (NLT)
Dear brothers and sisters, what’s the use of saying you have faith if you don’t prove it by your actions? That kind of faith can’t save anyone. [15] Suppose you see a brother or sister who needs food or clothing, [16] and you say, “Well, good-bye and God bless you; stay warm and eat well”—but then you don’t give that person any food or clothing. What good does that do?

Liberal? Sounds like it to me....with the exception of them saying “God Bless”!
________________________________________________________

This verse I simply (just)like!

James 2:19-20 (NLT)
Do you still think it’s enough just to believe that there is one God? Well, even the demons believe this, and they tremble in terror! [20] Fool! When will you ever learn that faith that does not result in good deeds is useless?
__________________________________________________________

Long story short, I work with a guy that came from Russia (Ukraine) and he said this is how communism started. The government made it sound as if they were for the people. Equality, fairness and political connectedness...which we all know means getting rid of anything to do with Jesus or God! Eventually the press reported what benefited their left agenda, people were brainwashed and became mindless puppets of the government. last, the government was their “god”.
Sad, very sad how people here buy into this same CRAP after seeing it happen in so many other countries!


39 posted on 12/23/2008 6:19:21 AM PST by mikelets456
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To: rhema

This clown tries to pretend churches keep the $$ while in truth they are giving more to the poor and needy than their own buildings. He doesn’t mention that most liberal giving is to political causes. They give to causes that make the DNC more powerful since that is where their hearts are.

Pray for W, America and Our Troops


40 posted on 12/23/2008 6:24:23 AM PST by bray (Gov Palin isn't corrupt enough for DC)
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To: The Brush

If churches stopped passing the plate, making giving/tithing a part of membership and having giving envelopes, church giving would sadly drop dramatically.


41 posted on 12/23/2008 6:36:35 AM PST by joesbucks (Sarah Palin: "I believe John McCain is the best leader that we have in the nation right now,)
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To: WayneS
I have no intention of being dragged into an inane argument with you this morning.

No I with you based on your previous posts.

42 posted on 12/23/2008 6:37:38 AM PST by joesbucks (Sarah Palin: "I believe John McCain is the best leader that we have in the nation right now,)
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To: MrB
The highest cashflow church in our area has no "plate", just envelopes and the ability to take auto-tithing through electronic transfer.

Well wonderful. Thoughtless giving.

43 posted on 12/23/2008 6:38:24 AM PST by joesbucks (Sarah Palin: "I believe John McCain is the best leader that we have in the nation right now,)
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To: sobieski

Actually I am a tithing church member.


44 posted on 12/23/2008 6:39:15 AM PST by joesbucks (Sarah Palin: "I believe John McCain is the best leader that we have in the nation right now,)
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To: joesbucks

It’s pretty easy to spot who “doesn’t get it” (that would be you).

And there’s really no point in attempting to explain the “reborn” mind to those who don’t get it.

Have a nice day.


45 posted on 12/23/2008 6:40:11 AM PST by MrB (The 0bamanation: Marxism, Infanticide, Appeasement, Depression, Thuggery, and Censorship)
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To: MrB

Actually there is a vast difference between church goers and truly those of a reborn mind. The ratio of the first is much higher than the second. So I get it. MAybe you don’t?


46 posted on 12/23/2008 6:41:30 AM PST by joesbucks (Sarah Palin: "I believe John McCain is the best leader that we have in the nation right now,)
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To: joesbucks
If churches stopped passing the plate Christians would give anyway.
Tithing is not part of the new covenant. We are told to be cheerful (actually hillarious) givers.
While some giving might stop without a receptacle, most would continue.
Our church receives as much money from our tape/CD ministry than we do from those who show up each week.
There's a difference between mega churches like Saddleback and small congregations.
Some people come to be entertained... and some come to worship.
47 posted on 12/23/2008 6:50:51 AM PST by The Brush
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To: rhema
Come on, liberals, redeem yourselves, and put your wallets where your hearts are.

They have been putting their wallets where their hearts are.

Liberals, at heart, are mean spirited, vindictive people.

48 posted on 12/23/2008 7:01:44 AM PST by Balding_Eagle (Overproduction;, one of the five top worries of the American farmer.)
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To: The Brush; joesbucks
But religious giving is often done out of the feeling of requirement, guilt, the rules of membership, peer pressure when the plate is passed and other prompters that pinch the giving nerve.

I would say that because of our sinful nature, it is impossible for one to give based on pure altruism. It is what we do out of thanks, but that sinful, grudging, or prideful nature is there.

49 posted on 12/23/2008 7:08:58 AM PST by stayathomemom (Cat herder and empty nester)
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To: rhema

Spending other people’s money isn’t about generosity, it’s about POWER.


50 posted on 12/23/2008 7:46:23 AM PST by Atlas Sneezed (Guns don't kill people. Criminals and the governments that create them kill people.)
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