Piggyback Disparity Needs Addressing
I read about the huge increase proposed for property tax in Worcester County. It is quite amazing since it is so large compared to other counties in Maryland. I believe I know why and wonder why more people do not recognize it. Worcester County has the smallest piggy back tax in Maryland. That is the tax collected from those who pay Maryland income taxes. It is paid to their county of residence. I have often wondered why it is so small. It produces less income for the county and that possibly may be why the property tax increase has to be so high.
The piggy back tax multiplier for Worcester County is .0125. The multiplier for Wicomico is .0320, for Somerset .0315, and for Caroline .0273. Other counties including the one I permanently reside in are much higher. Doesn’t that disparity seem strange?
Isn’t it about time to recognize this and do something about it? No one wants to pay any more taxes then they pay now, but it is unfair to others who pay property taxes in Worcester County that they should subsidize those who benefit from the absurdly low piggy back tax. It is unfair to those who do not permanently reside in Worcester County but pay property taxes to the county.
Also, Worcester County has never come to grips with why it should grant a special differential tax to Ocean City residents. I can understand why since they have not provided for adequate income or reasonable expenses. Again this is unfair to Ocean City residents who double pay for a lot of things.
Something good has to happen soon in Worcester County.
Response To Ridicule
The tool of ridicule has been used for decades by those who fear Biblical truth in an attempt to silence the voice of all those who believe in the true God of the Bible and this certainly was the case with one Mr. Ian Wildman, who purports himself to be a freelance authority on what is and is not politically correct and publicly acceptable today. However, this is an authority, which I personally do not recognize. On the one hand, he suggests that it is okay for me to have my “personal” opinions but unlike himself I do not have the right to present a personal spiritual position in a secular newspaper. He even uses the ‘B” word bomb which is designed to scare off the more fearful and feeble minded opponents. It didn’t work because I and God know it‘s not true.
Unlike Mr. Wildman I am not a novice when it comes to spiritual matters, Biblical truth and historical facts. I have spent the last 36 years of my life faithfully serving both the community of faith and the civil communities at large. I also served my country in the military and I have more than earned my right to speak my mind publicly. In fact, I personally believe that I have been called by God to be a watchman on the wall, and as a faithful watchman I must sound the warning to the world at large when it crosses a moral line. This is what I did with open letter to the President; I faithfully fulfilled what I was called to do. This in itself is an act of selfless love, because I knew by doing so I would open myself up to ridicule, but I did it anyway. A careful reading of Ezekiel chapter 33 would serve to educate the novice on these matters.
While Mr. Wildman’s attempts to ridicule me for saying too much, he also ridicules me for not saying enough. Which is it? And then taking a cue from our President he ridicules me for not apologizing for something that took place over one thousand years ago because of the crusades. What the Wildman’s of the world do not understand is that just because a religion calls itself Christian doesn’t make it so. I know this because I used to belong to a religion, which had a history of persecution against anyone who challenged the Church’s dogma and owned and read the Bible for themselves. Maybe Mr. Wildman never heard about the reformation and the thousands of Christians that were imprisoned, killed and tortured by a church and state authority for simply possessing a personal copy of the Bible? I left man centered religion long ago and now follow the teachings of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. I have a personal relationship with Christ and such I do not owe anyone an apology for what false religionist have done in the name of Christianity a thousand years ago. However, the very fact that one has to go back a thousand years to find fault is itself, very interesting.
Finally, Mr. Wildman attempts to ridicule me for not submitting a more “positive” message. I would suggest Mr. Wildman heed his own advice. As a preacher of the Gospel of Christ, I have a dual responsibility to preach the message of reconciliation and peace with God and our fellow man through Jesus Christ, but I also have the responsibility to warn, rebuke, reprove and correct. (2 Tim 3:16, 4:2) I have been called by God to preach the whole counsel of God and not just some selected passages that tickle the ears of those who insist on always being politically correct first and foremost. Instead, I seek to be always Biblically correct and as such I preach and teach the truth of God’s Word unapologetically, because, “I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ for it is the power of salvation…” Jesus himself, while speaking to His disciples said in John 7:7, ”The world cannot hate you; but me it hates, because I testify of it, that the works thereof are evil.” So if I give testimony to the world and warn that it is “calling evil good and good evil” and it hates me as a result, I fully understand why, and I believe I stand in good company with Jesus Christ. I am more than willing to pay the price for preaching and sharing the whole counsel of God. Christians are called to shed the light of truth in a world which is growing morally darker and darker every day, and if I have manifested the truth of God’s Word to just one individual by publicly sharing what God has revealed to me in the faithful study of His Word, then I will view that as a positive work indeed.
Pastor John Abent
Citizens Becoming Subjects Once Again
The political history of humankind is dominated by servitude to a dictator, king, religious leader, or some type of nation state. From the Egyptian Pharaohs’ first pyramid in 2865 B.C. through Nebuchadnezzar II, King of Babylon (605-562 B.C.) in the Old Testament book of David, and Caligula, Emperor of Rome (A.D. 12-41), then murderous Tamerlane (1360-1405), Henry the VIII of England (1509-1547), Ivan the Terrible of Russia (1533-1584), and George III of England (1760-1820) to mention a few, history presents consecutive millennia of subjugation and destruction of human life.
Thomas Jefferson was working on a draft of the Declaration of Independence in preparation for July 4 of 1776 when he had a brainstorm: by changing one word he could interrupt 4,600 years of unjust minimization of humanity. The word “Subjects” in the draft was replaced by the word “Citizens” in the final Declaration. For the first time, we the people are Citizens, not Subjects of anyone.
The American people are “…endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.” A Subject’s role in society is merely to obey the government. With the declaration of these unalienable rights, we could no longer be Subjects, so Jefferson rightly changed our designation to Citizens. A Citizen’s job is to participate in the democratic process by staying informed, letting the government know what he or she wants, and voting. Being a Subject means one is under the power of government. Being a Citizen means one is a member of the ruling class – the people.
My concern today is that Americans are slowly reverting back to the status of Subjects. Our status as Citizens is being eroded by the hyper-regulatory bureaucracies enforcing coercive laws at the direction of legislators on federal, state, and local levels. We have paid insufficient attention to the overwhelming power of increasing government entanglements to harm citizens. There were three federal crimes in the Constitution; there are now over 4,500. Federal regulations are produced in mind-boggling volumes by hundreds of thousands of bureaucrats following the irresponsible and unclear laws passed by legislators. The state and local constraints on the citizens are too voluminous to count. As Jefferson stated in the Declaration, the government has “… sent swarms of Officers to harass our people, and eat out their substance.”
Americans have been lulled into yielding our responsibilities as Citizens to the members of the political class in exchange for promises and payments.
We are unaware that the freedoms tethered to our responsibilities are ceded to politicians as well. Citizens are thus becoming Subjects once again. We can turn it around, but it takes hard work to learn the facts and understand that a truly wrong-headed and destructive government action against any one part of the citizenry hurts everyone. As we approach Independence Day, we should vow to take action in our lives to stop the hyper-intrusions that degrade our status and stand up once again as proud Citizens, not Subjects.