Sea gulls on welfare

I found this in the LDS magazine, the Ensign today. It is from a talk given by Marion G. Romney in 1982. He was quoting a story from Reader’s Digest.

“In our friendly neighbor city of St. Augustine great flocks of sea gulls are starving amid pleanty. Fishing is still good, but the gulls don’t know how to fish. For generations they have depended on the shrimp fleet to toss them scraps from the nets. Now the fleet has moved…”

“The shrimpers had created a Welfare State for the sea gulls. The big birds never bothered to learn how to fish for themselves and they never taught their children to fish. Instead they led their little ones to the shrimp nets.”

“Now the sea gulls, the fine free birds that almost symbolize liberty itself, are starving to death because they gave in to the ‘something for nothing’ lure. The sacrificed their independence for a handout.”

“A lot of people are like that, too. They see nothing wrong in picking delectable scraps from the tax nets of the U.S. Government’s ‘shrimp fleet’. But what will happen when the government runs out of goods? What about our children of generations to come?”

“Let’s not be gullible gulls. We must preserve our talents of self-suffciency, our genius for creating things for ourselves, our sense of thrift and our true love of independence.”

3 Responses

  1. Apropos, Larry. The seagull reference is similar to the feral hogs/corn story as well. Many of us are full-on children of the welfare state, and some are fully self sufficient. I fall somewhere in-between as someone trying to understand that not everything we enjoy will last forever. I’ve not been in the welfare trough, though I don’t think it’s necessary. Many of my generation didn’t believe that stocks had a “down” until recently. Many of the rising generation believe that everyone “deserves” a “living wage” regardless of the value of what they do. Heaven help us all.

  2. Clarification to above post: “I’ve not been in the welfare trough, though I don’t think that’s the only way we can have this problem.”

  3. Seagulls = flying ocean-side rats. At least according to a friend of mine who was a fishing boat captain.

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