...by the content of their character

A quarter of a million people were in Washington D.C. on August 28th, 1963 to hear Martin Luther King deliver his famous "I Have a Dream" speech.  He concluded by saying, "I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character." I realize that bigotry and racism is still a significant problem in our country, but I think most people have adopted the "content of their character" as a measuring stick for the people they meet.  I think we have come a very long way in our social acceptance of others since I was a boy.

There is still a problem, however.  Even when I judge people by the content of their character, there are still many people that I find objectionable.  If you hang out in a gang, use and sell drugs, and wear your pants six to eight inches below the top of your underwear - I avoid you.  I don't dislike you because of the color of your skin.  I dislike you because you're a thug and you dress funny.  If you wear badly torn jeans, your ball cap is on backwards, and you haven't shaved since the last time Halley's Comet drifted by, I don't dislike you because you live in Louisiana or rural Mississippi.  I dislike you because you are uneducated white trash.  (I am disgusted at the thought that two new "reality shows" are about to begin which appear to glorify - or at least justify - the primitive and barbaric lives of drunken rednecks. Men AND women.  I'm happy to judge women by the content of their character, too.)

One of the primary reasons I abandoned my Facebook profile was because people who wanted to debate me didn't know the difference between "there", "their", and "they're".  I didn't unfriend you because I disagreed with your political opinion.  I stopped using Facebook altogether because I was horrified by the number of people who are functionally illiterate. Many people have stopped using capital letters completely.  Grammar seems to be completely non-existent these days.  I admit that I don't like these people, but that's because I AM judging them - by the content of their character, just as Martin Luther King dreamed that we would do one day.

I hope nobody is shocked to learn that there are many black people that I have a huge amount of respect for, such as Thomas Sowell and Walter E. Williams. My mother used to cut editorials written by Walter Williams out of the newspaper insisting that I read them.  "He sounds just like you!" she often told me.  I was deeply flattered that she thought so.  During Continental Congress 2009 I met Ralph W. Conner who was our expert speaker on the Second Amendment.  Mr. Conner is black, and he narrates a wonderful video called No Guns for Negroes which is available on YouTube.  Not long after CC2009 I met Mr. Connor for lunch in Chicago.  He was excited about my Constitution class, and he and I were planning to work together to promote the cause of Liberty.  I was tentatively scheduled to give a presentation at his church, but unfortunately Mr. Connor died shortly after our meeting, and we were never able to execute any of our plans.  These are men I admire greatly - judging them solely by the content of their character.  Look what has happened to Bill Cosby over the last year or so.  It seems that the content of his character is not as clean and pristine as many of us imagined it was.  Sociopaths are very, very good and covering up their evil ways.  In 2012 I was suckered into moving back to Texas to work on a silver mint project.  I wanted to believe the philosophical rhetoric I was being told. Luckily I discovered early on that the whole project was an elaborate Ponzi scheme.  Anyone can be fooled.  Even me.

How does this discussion apply to you?  If you are using cunning and fraud to accumulate other people's property, the content of your character is evil.  More likely, you work forty or more hours each week, you take your kids to soccer practice, and then put your feet up to watch a football game.  I will grant that the content of your character isn't evil, but - it's not worth writing home about, either. "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing."  Each of us should strive to improve the content of our character every chance we get.  Helping the less fortunate, and standing up to confront evil isn't easy, but it's the only way to avoid coming to the end of your life and having nothing worthwhile to show for it.

Please leave a comment to tell me who you admire, and why you think the content of their character deserves recognition.

Lighting the fires of Liberty, one heart at a time!


Mr. Badnarik:
I think your latest piece is dead-on.  
My husband is the man I admire most. He is my knight in shining armor. His religion informs how he acts in public and in private. He tries to love God above all else and for the love of God, he therefore tries to be kind, considerate, compassionate, thoughtful, and honest.  He's a jack-of-all-trades. He works hard and always lends a hand. I think you'd think the same as I do, if you knew him.

Content of their character

The Paul family, especially Ron and Rand, top my "most admired" list. Their sheer goodness and the beautiful content of their chacters is abundantly obvious to anyone who pays even minimal attention.

Esteemed admiration for David Lonier in Oakland County, Michigan

Mr. David Lonier is too humble of a man to want recognition for all that he is doing. He and so many others working at the Grassroots of America are to be admired. He simply epitomizes those qualities with the following acts of devotion to the liberty movement: 

1) He helps others directly by investments of his time and/or money for no repayment.
2) He helps others to connect with one another so as to promote mutual assistance. 
3) He hosts gatherings with open invitations to his community and to those outside of his community for the purpose of educating the public on the facts surrounding the issues and to promote strength in numbers with like-minded concerns.
4) He actively shows his concern for his fellow mankind, about our distinct American heritage, and about the "sustainability" of both by ridding government of corruption, racketeering, and domestic terrorism.

How many others are there that are just like Dave Lonier?
Hundreds ?
Tens of thousands? (I hope so.)

We need more, that's for sure. 

Thank you, Michael Badnarik, for the opportunity to bring recognition of this fabulous American patriot. 



Please do not believe my nomination of you as a person of good character is insincere.

In the years I have known you, you have fought to keep liberty and freedom at the forefront of your life. Teaching the Constitution at your own financial expense, writing this newsletter while fighting for your health ( your life even.) 

Our conversations are filled with stories of how your integrity has driven your life. Your sense of humor during the trying times, your ability to teach even the most stubborn of humans, these are the reasons I admire your character. 


When people quote Mr. King, I have a real problem. I know the truth about King. The real truth, I have no respect for him and his movement. I saw him in DC two years before he was murdered. The people who hung abount the motel were of very questional backgrounds and Kings action were very questionable. Had to be said

[mjb: I don't speak for MLK's overall content of character. Most famous and powerful men have a string of female conquests - which only goes to prove that I'm not famous or powerful. :) However when a quote serves to highlight the truth, I tend to use it. I even quote Abraham Lincoln once in awhile, and I'm not overly fond of him, either.]

Who to admire

Well Michael, besides yourself I'd most admire Dr. Andrew Wakefield. He was so wrongly set up and vilified by the pharmaceutical industry and his career and reputation were permanently stained. Yet he keeps fighting for what he believes. He continues to fight every day and tries to save the lives of children by exposing the corruption in the industry that made an example of him and assasinated his character, so others would not dare to do the work and research that's he's done.

As for your comments in this article, I couldn't agree more. I have encountered so many mindless, ignorant people on the Internet and Facebook, I have stepped back and don't choose to waste my time there any longer. Too many can't follow the principles of the Constitution because they cannot read or understand it. That would take some effort in the new world of instant gratification. Keep up the good work and good writing. I think there are many of us who appreciate your efforts. 

You are judgmental, sir!

You say you don't like someone simply because of the way they dress...how unfortunate for you and that whole group of people you dislike and judge based upon their appearance.  You also contradict yourself because you're making judgments based strictly upon appearances.  I don't know if you're a follower of Jesus, but if you are, you should remember that he came to seek and save the lost.  I'm sure there are many thugs and gang members who are much closer to the kingdom of God than you are.  Jesus even commands his followers to love and forgive their enemies. Repent!

[mjb: Thank you. Yes, I am judgmental. I can tell the difference between good and bad, and I openly reject bad, and the people who do bad things. People who are NOT judgmental simply group the good with the bad. I think that attitude helps to perpetuate the problems we have in society.

Furthermore, you are not intelligent enough to read my newsletter and understand it. Your claim that I judge people solely on the clothes they wear is incorrect. Clothing is simply one of the criteria I use. Dealing drugs or stealing from others is worthy of my disdain. If you want to include these people in your guest list because you are proudly "non-judgmental", be my guest.

Finally, I hold people like you in very low esteem because you chose to write a response critical of my newsletter, but you refused to include your name and eMail address. You are a coward, and judging you by the content of your character, I consider you a small and insignificant individual. Ergo, I have no reason to repent.]

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