You Can Trust the Communists (to be Communists)
Chapter 11 - Program for Survival
Program For Survival
It is apparent that on the record to date, anti-Communist programs have completely failed to halt Communism. The Communists are riding high. Their program is in top gear. They are going from strength to strength. Many groups think that they are successfully fighting Communism, but the record does not support their opinion. When giving evidence before the House Un-American Activities Committee in 1956, I was asked if I could name any unified, world-wide organization which was successfully fighting Communism. I replied that I could not do so. The reply has drawn more criticism than any other statement I made in that testimony. A number of groups have written in to rectify my ignorance on that point, and to tell me about their own organization which is successfully combatting Communism. No matter what the group, the measure of their success is limited indeed. The Communist program for world conquest continues to make phenomenal gains.
The fact is that progress is a relative thing. Many anti-Communist groups are moving in the right direction, but their progress up to the present time has been rather insubstantial. The degree of their success is somewhat similar to that of the missionary priest who had been working on a cannibal island. When asked what sort of success he was having, he replied, "Well, we are certainly making progress! Now the natives will eat only fishermen on Fridays." He was, perhaps, making progress, but it must be admitted that he had a long way to go.
For any program to be effective, there are three essential elements, namely, motivation, knowledge, and organization. Without adequate motivation, knowledge, and organization, any program must fail.
If people are to perform unpleasant tasks sacrificially and on a continuing basis, they must have a reason for doing so. An effective program against Communism demands time, money, energy and sacrifice. The first question to be considered is what motivating forces are available. What are the things which move people to action? It is regrettably true that most people are moved most effectively by immediate, selfish interest. In most cases, self-interest dominates all other considerations. If a patriot wishes to arrange for an anti-Communist speaker to address a civic club or some corresponding group, there are two approaches which he may use. He may approach the program chairman with arguments such as these: "This man has a message your club should hear, a message which is vital to their businesses, to their homes, to their families, and to their very lives. It is your duty to have him bring them this message." Such an approach is likely to meet with little success. On the other hand, he may approach the program chairman and say, "Here is a good, entertaining, stirring speaker. Wherever he has spoken before, he has had a wonderful reception. He will really give you a good program." An approach like that is nearly always successful because it appeals to the self-interest of the program chairman. He wants to have people come up and pat him on the back for securing a good speaker.
This is true not only of civic clubs, but of all groups. Churches, for example, have their own program and they are mainly concerned with the success of that program. You may approach a pastor with the argument that here is a message which is absolutely vital to his people. You may point out to him that Communism has conquered one billion people, for a more than the Christian church has reached after its entire history; that Communism is rapidly closing the mission fields of the world; that Communism is the enemy of God, and that these things should be told to the people. Such an approach is not usually successful. You may, on the other hand, point out to the pastor that here is a man whom people like to hear and that if he holds a metting in this church, he will attract into the church many people who do not normally attend. This is a very powerful argument and one which is apt to be successful.
Motivating forces must be found which are so powerful that they can overwhelm the lethargy, the immediate self-interest, the greed, and the routine that dominate so many lives. Life is a daily competition between conflicting interests for most intelligent and effective individuals. They must select from a host of matters clamoring for their attention those which appear to be the most urgent, the most entertaining, or which offer the greatest prospect of reward. The struggle against Communism must successfully compete with other matters clamoring for attention.
It would seem that a sufficient motivation would be found in the fact that a billion people under Communist control are being prepared to encompass the conquest and destruction of the Free World. The truth is, however, that generally speaking, an immediate motive of appetite or personal advantage will triumph over the long-range, distant motivation of danger. To most people, Communism is still a long way off. It is causing a lot of trouble in many parts of the world, but it does not present, as far as they can see, a real, immediate threat to themselves or to their families.
A primary necessity, then, is an honest acknowledgment of the gravity of the danger. There must be a willingness to face the truth, avoiding the temptation to gloss over the dangers, or to take refuge in vain imaginations and pious phraseologies. The Communist enemy must not be sold short. Nothing is to be gained by a denial of his material assets, his strategic mobility and his inflexible determination to conquer.
There is certainly the danger that a true understanding of the perilous situation may lead some to the abyss of despair. The temptation is to shrug the shoulders and to declare that the task is hopeless. An alternative attitude is to search for some vast organization that can meet the danger. Responsibility is laid at the door of the government, the State Department, the military forces, or the churches. It is a rare individual who asks, "What can I do to avert disaster?"
Two students came up to me after I had spoken at a college in the Middle West. One of them was burning with anger. "How is it possible that our elected officials can be so ignorant?" he wanted to know. "It's their necks that are a stake! Why don't they do something?" I endeavored to redirect his attention from what the government should be doing to what he should be doing, but in vain. He was too filled with concern and anger against the government for its failure.
The second student reacted very differently. Said he, "Let's forget about the government and look at ourselves! I feel ashamed to think of the little I have done. I don't know just what I can do, but I am going to try to find out. I want to read and study and discover what I can do before I start worrying too much about somebody else." This is the kind of attitude that is needed. Each person must face his personal responsibility before he starts to criticize others.
When faced with this challenge, the average person raises the objection that the power of the individual is very limited. From one point of view, that is true; but from another point of view, what can be accomplished by individuals is unbelievable. Most of my time is spent trying to inform people and to arouse them to the Communist threat. However, even if I were to speak to a thousand people every night and could convince the thousand, it would take me five hundred years to speak to everybody now living in the United States, and I would go behind at the rate of two and a half million a year due to the continuing population increase. If, on the other hand, I were to speak to one person a week and could convince, inform and instruct that person, and if we each convinced, informed and instructed another person the following week, and the four of us enlisted another the following week, by this process everyone in the world could be reached in less than twelve months.
The power of individuals is limitless. The time has come for people to cease looking for great organizations afar off, and to begin looking for things that can be done close at home. Every man who invites a friend into his home, gives him literature to read and informs him of the danger, is helping to thwart the Communist program. The powers of multiplication are limitless. The principle on which to work is the recruitment of individuals one by one on a basis of knowledge, understanding, and motivated service.
A stirring address at a mass meeting may stimulate the emotions and provoke great enthusiasm. Such a response is like a tropical thunderstorm that creates a flash flood rather than the consistent soaking the thirsty soil needs. The problem is to convert temporary emotional enthusiasm into sacrificial study and dedicated work. This is a difficult task and one that cannot be done on a mass basis.
A short time ago, I spoke to the legislature of one of the New England states. It was a magnificent meeting. My coming had been well prepared. The governor escorted me into the chamber. The chamber was packed and the galleries were filled. As I spoke, the legislators listened most attentively. When I had finished, they arose as one man in ecstatic, tumultuous, prolonged applause. The governor shook my hand. The legislators crowded around. One of them said, with the sparkle of a tear in his eye, "That was an emotional experience. I suffered with you." It was truly a great meeting.
That same evening, after a mass rally in a nearby city where I had spoken, the Attorney-General of the state came up to me and said, "I was dying to have you tell the people that this morning the legislature was shattered to it foundations, and that this afternoon, they went back to the real business of their existence: whether to have greyhound or horse racing in this state."
Many find it appalling that a situation of such gravity should be treated so casually. And yet this happens with ninety-nine out of every hundred who hear the message. This is the reality within which we must work. People will never be enlisted on a mass basis. They must be enlisted and trained one by one. If that is done, the powers of multiplication are miraculous.
The question of motivation is of basic importance in the struggle against Communism. It is not only a questioning of the forces that will motivate people in the United States, but a question of the forces that will move people in South America, Japan, Arabia, and India. What motives are adequate to make the people in these areas stand firm against the deception allurements of Communism? Despite its vital importance, this question of motivation has received very little attention.
I had occasion to address the Texas Legislature, and received the warm response so characteristic of the generous people of that state. After the address, one of the legislators came up to me and said, "India's the trouble! We must stop them from getting India!" He thought for a moment, and suddenly the answer came. It was the legislator's answer to all problems. Said he, "I've got it! We must spend a lot more money!"
"Let's think about that a moment," I replied. "You spent a lot of money in Iraq and Bolivia, didn't you? What did your money achieve in these countries? In Iraq, it provided the weapons with which the pro-Communists destroyed their enemies. In Bolivia, the American embassy personnel had to flee in shame from raging, Communist-led mobs. Your money does not seem to have done much good there, does it?"
All the money in the world is useless without dedicated personnel through whom it can be channelled. The great need is for dedicated, motivated personnel.
There are various motivations effective within a free society. A primary one is the profit motive. In its proper environment, this has been very effective. It has produced abundance, and has improved the material well-being of millions of people. There are certain spheres, however, in which it is quite inadequate as a motivation force. It certainly will not stir to selfless devotion the student intellectuals who are attracted to Communism. The appeal to them must be much more idealistic.
The problem of the Communist appeal to the student intellectual is one which money alone cannot solve. It is quite obvious that should a student rise in a university in Central or South America and say, "I'm opposed to Communism because it is against the interests of American big business," or even, "I'm against Communism because it will prevent my making a personal fortune," he would be scorned by a majority of his fellows. Reasons given for opposing Communism must be meaningful to the people concerned. People are needed who will oppose Communism in terms of an ideology that will command respect from the other students to whom they are speaking.
Such ideological forces are numerous. Forces that operate widely are religion, nationalism, morality, and love of family, as well as the desire to improve general economic well-being.
The great paradox is that people with a rich spiritual culture appear unaware of the motivating strength of spiritual forces and overwhelmingly convinced of the dominant power of the materialist motivation of improvement in economic conditions. On the other hand, the Communists boast of being complete materialists. They affirm there is nothing in the entire world but matter in motion. Nevertheless, they have shown a deep appreciation of the multiplicity of forces that lead groups of people to action, and have used these forces with great skill. The appeal of economic betterment has been by no means the only motive utilized by Communism. In actuality, they have made far more effective use of the appeal of nationalism.
The strange situation has developed in which the materialistic Communists are conquering the world with idealistic promises, while the professedly idealistic Free World is endeavoring to combat them with material gifts. An idea widely accepted by leading Americans is that Communism will not appeal to people with a degree of economic security. The policy adopted to combat Communism, therefore, is to improve the economic conditions of those who are still outside the Communist fold.
A program to combat Communism that rests upon such an economic foundation, is doomed. To feed the hungry and the poor is a Christian act. To assume that as a result of being fed, clothed, and housed they will automatically think the right thoughts and feel the right emotions is Marxism, not Christianity. A well-fed Communist is just as dangerous as a hungry one. He is likely to be more efficient.
There are things more important to many people even than life itself. The devout Hindu will feed his sacred cow while he starves to death. The devout Moslem will willingly die for Islam. There was a day when it was considered the normal thing for Christians to die for their faith. Powerful motivations indeed reside in religious faith.
Communism is the mortal enemy of these idealistic forces. It is the enemy of all religion. It will destroy the national integrity of every country. It will finally abolish home, family, and all moral codes. Here is a great unexplored pool of motivating forces for the struggle against Communism.
What must be realized is that government as practiced in America has little access to these deep motivating forces. Constitutional government is limited government. There is strict separation of church and state. The government cannot directly mobilize a specific religious group in any land and utilize its motivating religious self-interest to thwart Communism. They would appear to be favoring one religious group as against another. Thus the role of the government in the struggle against Communism is limited. Individuals and groups of individuals can and must do what the government cannot do. The urgent need is to discover individuals and groups in all countries with motives that will lead them to effective service against Communism and to provide them with the knowledge and the tools of communication to make their work effective.
Students educated in the universities of the free countries have been among the most effective agents of Communism. The Communists have always realized the potential of such students, and have concentrated upon recruiting them, training them, and providing them with what they needed to serve Communism effectively in their own lands. For a number of years, it was almost routine for Australian Rhodes scholars who went to England to study, to return to Australia as dedicated Communists. Fortunately this tendency has eased off in recent years, but the Communist attempt to recruit the lonely foreign student continues, and is all too frequently crowned with success.
After I had spoken at a Midwestern university, I was somewhat startled when an exchange student from Afghanistan publicly and unashamedly extolled the virtues of Communism. His mentor was an American girl who sat by his side. He finished with the ringing assertion: "Communism is science. You said so yourself. The Communists say that any advance in science helps them. You must therefore acknowledge Communism or repudiate science."
I replied, "Arson is fire. I acknowledge it. Everyone knows it. I must therefore acknowledge arson and become an arsonist or repudiate fire to cook my meals and heat my home. Is that what you are trying to say?"
It is not enough to train students in technical science in American universities. They must be transformed into devotees of freedom. This can be done as they are the recipients, not only of knowledge, but of friendship and love. The student in a foreign land is often homesick and heartsore. The Communists provide not merely Marxist-Leninist ideology but also hospitality, companionship and social life. They make this lonely student feel they are interested in him as an individual, that he is important. When they have won him to Communism, they equip him with organizing skills and the necessary tools to serve Communism in his homeland.
We can and we must do likewise, not for Communist slavery, but for Christian liberty. This can be done. An illustration is found in the story of an exchange student from India whom I met in Seattle, Washington. He had just completed his degree as Doctor of Philosophy at the University of Washington. He was a handsome young Indian, a splendid student, and devoted to the principles of individual liberty. He was an evangelical Christian. Upon completing his degree, he was offered a job with the United Nations. He could have lived like an American gentleman, but he chose to return to his home in Kerala, India.
Shortly before his return, Kerala had become the first Indian state to elect a Communist government. It might have been expected that Kerala, the best educated and the most Christian of the Indian states, would have been the last state to elect a Communist government to power. The fact is, however, that the majority of the Christians voted Communist because of their ignorance of the true nature of Communism and the deceptive but glowing Communist promises.
He understood the nature and program of Communism. He determined to do what he could to inform his countrymen. Since the Communist government in Kerala was merely a state government which had to operate under the eye of the federal government and within the framework of the Indian constitution, the Christians still had their basic liberites. The Christian group to which he belonged began to publish a Christian magazine called The Light of the World. He and his helpers took the finest anti-Communist literature, translated it into the language of the people and circulated it in the very face of Communist terror. Their basic motivation was their informed Christian faith.
Some months later, I received a letter saying: "Do we really mean business? You and I know that the conquest of India is a step in the encirclement and surrender of America. The Communists are not conquering India with guns, bombs, and missiles, but with promises, photographs, magazines and newspapers. In Kerala we have a unique opportunity. The Communists will have to run for re-election. When this time comes, they can be expelled without violence if the people can be told the truth. The tragedy is that we have not the means to tell the people the truth. The Communists have many daily newspapers, and large numbers of magazines. Can you help us to get a daily newspaper dedicated to truth, democracy, and freedom and resting on a Christian foundation?" In reply to my question about costs, he said that it would take $50,000.
Raising such a sum of money posed something of a problem. I sought help from one of the very large foundations in New York. I had been told that the members of this foundation were interested in India. The officials were courteous and friendly. They listened with great interest to the program, and commended it highly. Then they said, "Magnificent as the project is, much as we commend it, we cannot help you because you are Christian. We cannot get mixed up in religion in India."
I tried to argue with them. "Can't you see what you are doing? You have told me yourselves that you have difficulty securing anyone to go to India representing your group unless you increase his salary by twenty-five per cent. When that individual with his increased salary gets to India, what does he do? Does he go out into the villages where the temperature may be 120 degrees in the summer, where the drinking water may be filled with dysentery, bacilli and amoebae? Or does he sit in an air-conditioned room at some hotel and write reports?
"Each year the Communists appoint thousands of full-time Communist agents, primarily recruited from students who are motivated, dedicated, and thoroughly indoctrinated with Communism. They equip them with beautiful literature, and send them round the villages to deceive the people by offering them heaven on earth. We do not have thousands, but we do have some hundreds who have a motive to sacrifice in the fight against Communism. Communism is the enemy of their God, their Christ, and their freedom. Because of this, they are willing to go to their people and warn them of the dangers of Communism. You may not approve of their motive, but surely you approve what they are doing. Yet you are saying, 'We cannot help them because they are Christian. We cannot help them because they have a motive. Take away their motive so that they won't do it, and then maybe we can help them to do what they won't do.'"
Despite this discouraging response, we determined to accept the challenge and help our Indian Christian friends in their struggle which is also our struggle. The first edition of this paper was published in August, 1959.
Shortly before the publication of this first edition, crisis hour arrived in Kerala. The Communist government of Kerala was expelled by the central government, and elections were scheduled to take place within six months. The newly born newspaper was thus faced with tremendous responsibility and opportunity. This came about because a group possessed of motivation and knowledge received the material aid needed to be effective. Within a free society, motivations are multiple and may even appear contradictory. They must be utilized and not destroyed.
My personal motivation is twofold. In the first place I have a wife and family whom I love very dearly. The Communists consider them diseased social animals. At present rates of progress, Communism will have conquered the world within a generation, and, as members of the residual diseased bourgeois class, my wife and family will become historically redundant with obvious ugly implications.
In the second place, I have a Christian faith. I believe in God and His love, Christ and His redemption, and the great commission to go into all the world and preach the gospel. Communism is the enemy of God and of Christ and His gospel. These two facts have motivated me to do everything within my power to stay the advance of Communism.
Others share this motivation. A brilliant orthopedic surgeon was faced with the facts about Communism. He said to me: "I wake up every morning and I see one billion people encircling us for our conquest and our destruction. I don't like it, so I assume that it cannot be so and try to put it out of my mind. I have been trained to examine evidence and face facts, and the evidence keeps returning to haunt me. I examine it and I cannot escape it. I then examine my own life. I look at my wife and children and I say, 'What am I doing to preserve their future?' Certainly I am building a good surgical practice, acquiring a good name, getting a good bank balance, but what will that matter if the Communists take over? The only thing that is important is stopping the Communists, and I am not doing anything to do that. I don't know what to do but I intend to find out and when I do find out, I don't care what it costs. By God's grace, I'll do it." He is ready to leave home, country, and economic security to do his duty to his home and country.
If the facts about the Communist advance are true, his attitude is not merely praiseworthy, it is perfectly reasonable and intelligent. The trouble is that most people simply do not believe these facts. They think they do, but actually they do not. If they were convinced, they would be prepared to pay any price and spend any amount of time and money to try and avert the threat. Until our actions match our professed beliefs, onlookers can be forgiven for denying our sincerity and despising our hypocrisy.
The finest motivation is impotent without adequate knowledge. For generations mothers have longed to be able to protect their children from the scourge of poliomyelitis, but they could not do it because they did not know how. Only out of knowledge acquired from continuing study has a program to combat it emerged. It is possible to hate Communism fervently and simultaneously to serve it faithfully and well. Those who spread poliomyelitis hated it, but that did not prevent their disseminating it. They did not even know they were spreading it. The same kind of thing is happening with Communism. It is being spread far and wide by people who do not know what they are doing.
When people are found who are motivated and concerned, they must be given knowledge. One way in which this may be done is through literature. The literature on the subject of Communism is extensive. It must be studied. Invaluable training can be gained in study circles where discussion aids in true understanding. There is no substitute for specific knowledge.
Communism should be taught in the schools but it should be taught with a moral directive. It should not be taught as an alternative economic philosophy but as a system of tyranny. The object of the teaching should be to protect the students against the deceptive subtleties of Communist dialectics and to promote within them a greater devotion to freedom. It should be taught as a medical school teaches cancer or tuberculosis-as an aid to its elimination.
Teaching that merely compares and contrasts certain features of Capitalist and Communist economics is dangerous indeed. In a free society, the students continuously enjoy the privileges of freedom and it is difficult for them to conceive of a system where these values do not prevail. Isolated aspects of Communist economics assume a glittering luster when illuminated by the radiance of the star of liberty. In the environment of Communist tyranny, they are tawdry and repulsive.
Khrushchev told the American people that in Russia they are on the verge of abolishing income tax. Within American society that seems a highly desirable goal. To abolish income tax under Communist tyranny is a sham and delusion. The big American corporations do not need to tax their employees. The Communist Party is the monopoly corporation that owns the entire Russian economy. It fixes all wages and prices. It can impose a one hundred per cent sales tax without announcing it in any way.
If students are taught that Communist economy can run without income tax and are not taught the tyrannical role of the Communist Party, great damage is done. At an early age, each student should be taught that the issue is clear cut-freedom versus slavery. They then should be taught the techniques by which Communism seeks to deceive, conquer, and enslave.
Love without knowledge is frequently impotent. I had been speaking to a church group in California about the necessity for knowledge. Following the message, the minister stood up to give a devotional, apparently in the hope that he could counteract any bad influence I might have had. The theme of his devotional was that love is the greatest force in the world. He said that we are told to love all God's children. Everybody is God's child. The Communists are God's children. We should therefore love the Communists. Khrushchev is God's child. We should love Khrushchev.
After the meeting we fell into conversation. He was apparently conscious that what he had said might have appeared as a rebuttal of what I had stressed, that is, the need for knowledge. He said that this had not been his intention, but that I had seemed to exalt knowledge above love. I told him that as far as I was concerned, he had not said anything, for love cannot operate without knowledge. If a mother spends all her time kissing her child and fails to have it inoculated against polio, has she shown love towards it? Suppose you see an insane hoodlum kicking a little girl to death a hundred yards down the street. Before you can get there, the little girl will be dead. In your hand you have a gun. How do you show love in a situation like that?
What is needed is not pious phraseology, but a loving spirit and the knowledge to apply it in a given situation. Love without knowledge is blind, and knowledge without love may lack dynamic power. We need a synthesis of love of knowledge. Then truth shall prevail.
Any program to combat Communism must be based on a thorough study of the Communist mind, motives and techniques. When we understand these, we can see clearly in the murk of the Communist dialectic, detect the tactic of the enemy and devise a program to abort his plans.
Organization is the genius of Communism. Communism is the triumph of organization over undirected economic and social forces. It is a truism that organization will prevail over disorganization. An anti-Communism program needs organization.
A commonly held view is that unity is the great need in this organized anti-Communism program. An argument such as the following is assured of a tumultuous reception with almost any group of businessmen: "Communism is the universal enemy. It is the enemy of every segment of a free society. It is the enemy of both Management and Labor. It is the enemy of all religions; Protestant, Catholic, Jewish, Hindu and Moslem. Since it is the enemy of all free political parties, it is the common enemy of Republican and Democrat. Since it is our universal enemy, it should cause us to submerge our differences and unitedly throw ourselves into the struggle against it." Such an argument will be cheered to the echo yet it ignores the important question of motivation. When groups submerge their differences, they frequently submerge their motivating forces and the organization so formed is like an automobile without gasoline because the dynamics of action reside in the submerged differences.
Suppose, for example, a joint Catholic-Protestant organization is formed. The liberty of the Catholic conscience necessitates freedom to propagate the doctrines of the faith. The liberty of conscience of an evangelical Protestant depends upon his freedom to preach the gospel of Christ. If the Protestant gets into an organization where he must refrain from preaching the gospel, and the Catholic in that organization must refrain from advancing Catholicism, both are embarrassed, and rendered so much less effective. If, however, they are in different organizations where the consciences of both are clear, they can do far more effective work.
The Christian Anti-Communism Crusade held a school for anti-Communists in the educational building of the Tower Grove Baptist church in St. Louis, Missouri. The school was attended by a considerable number of Catholics. After the school, the Catholics were very eager to form a joint Protestant-Catholic anti-Communist organization. I replied that, should we do so, each would paralyze the effectiveness of the other. Each group has a dominant purpose. The emotional attitudes of the members are tuned to the fulfillment of that purpose. Unless the message is in tune with that purpose, it will not produce the maximum result. Opposition to it may be unconscious, but it will be real nevertheless. If the message against Communism is tuned to the basic purposes of the organization, it will rally the enthusiastic support of the group. When an organization consists of elements with contradictory purposes, it is difficult to mobilize the enthusiastic support of all elements. Maybe this should not be so, in relation to such a universal enemy, but as a practical issue, it is so.
I suggested that the Catholics form a Catholic organization so that they could speak to Catholics without the embarrassment of a Protestant leader. Rather hesitantly, they agreed, and formed the Cardinal Mindszenty Foundation. This organization is now doing a most effective work and its leadership is now convinced of the wisdom of the course pursued. Instead of uniting, Catholic speaks to Catholic, and Protestant speaks to Protestant. Information is shared. Joint projects may be undertaken. But organizational unity is not sought. Neither infringes his conscience. Each has the dynamic of his faith, and can be much more effective than if a united organization had been formed.
Organizational unity is a mirage. The great need is multiplicity, not unity. The unity of a free society resides in its diversity. Movements must be formed with conserve the motivating forces within each group and channel them into the struggle for freedom and survival. The Communists understand this very well. That is why they operate through a great number of front organizations, each of which is tuned to some specific motivating dynamic. Every religious, professional, economic, and cultural group should organize an anti-Communist program.
There is always the temptation to try to form a totalitarian organization modelled on Communism. After I had spoken at a school in Eugene, Oregon, I received a letter form one of the students which began, "Dr. Schwarz, you hypocrite! You came to us and you showed us the power of Communist organization, their dedication, their devotion, and their discipline. You told us how the Communist leader can sit and order every individual to do a certain task, and how the individual obeys whatever the cost. Then you start an organization with a membership fee of $10 a year, and life membership at $100. How will you ever combat them like that? Let's form an organization like that of the Communists where we have discipline and authority and where people do what is necessary at whatever cost to themselves."
I replied that I appreciated the spirit of his letter. I did not object to his calling me a hypocrite, for I often felt that way myself. Yet I was afraid that he did not fully understand the conflict between totalitarian organization and the Christian liberty of conscience. This liberty of conscience itself should direct the individual into unselfish service to fulfil his responsibility towards God and to the preservation of that liberty for all men. Any organization that flouts this principle is anti-libertarian and anti-Christian. Discipline must be largely self-discipline; sacrifice must be voluntary, not compulsory. The mainspring of our organization must be from within the character of free citizens.
I cannot compel you to do anything in this struggle. God Himself renounced His right to compel. It depends upon voluntary choice and free will.
Who will win? The Communists are supremely confident of complete victory. They claim that their victory is assured because of the quality of character in democratic lands. They affirm that the environment generating this character is Capitalism in its dying phase. Since Capitalism is dying phase. Since Capitalism is dying, it creates character without survival virtue. They are convinced that the average citizen of the Free World is so intellectually lazy and dishonest, so greedy and selfish, so intoxicated with entertainment, so consumed with his immediate problems that no matter how clear the evidence of impending doom, that evidence will never be acknowledged, and the organizational steps necessary for survival will never be taken.
We categorically reject this claim. We are not the helpless victims of our environment, doomed to destruction. The fault lies not in our environment but in ourselves. The political, judicial, educational and cultural organizations of a free society can function only when the individual citizens have enlightened the minds and are dedicated to the foundations of freedom. The basic responsibility rests on each one. The success of this book can be measured by the number of readers whose attention has been redirected from the responsibility of others to their own responsibility; who are asking the question, "What can I do?" Upon such a foundation the political, legislative and cultural programs necessary can be built.
Material forces alone do not determine the destinies of men. The resources of an infinite God can change the balance of material assets. These resources are liberated through prayer, the sacrifice, and the intelligent organization of people filled with the love of God. Fundamentally, the problem is a moral and spiritual one. The foundations of freedom must be girded with a moral and spiritual revival. As free men humbly seek God and present their bodies, minds and hearts to their country and the cause of all mankind, we may well believe that tyranny shall not triumph and freedom shall not perish from the earth.Back to top