God can change your trouble into treasure
To the editor:
President Obama has come out in support of gay marriage. First, a Maryland governor and now a president trying to change God’s mind about something; it will be interesting to see how they make out.
I once represented a young man charged with soliciting a male undercover police officer for sex. Fearing his parents would read about it in the paper, he went to his father and confessed his homosexuality. A person’s confession is often a cry for help. Although their homosexuality is news to others, the individual has usually struggled in silent agony for years. Loving the person is not an endorsement of their sinful lifestyle. He told me his father said: “Son, you are my flesh and your mother’s, and we want to help you. Come talk to us anytime.”
Years later, I ran into this client. He introduced his wife and their two young daughters. He said, “Mr. Palmer, I know my parents’ unconditional love is what brought me through. When I found Christ, my hopelessness changed. I knew God was real and that He could change my sexual desire.” Their unconditional love paved the way for him to come to Christ through faith-based counseling and to put his gay lifestyle behind him.
Dr. George A. Rekers, professor of neuropsychiatry and behavioral science at the University of South Carolina, puts it this way: “There is no such thing as a ‘natural’ inclination toward homosexual involvement. Instead, there are adverse situations in a child’s life that can lead to homosexual temptations.”
I’ll always remember my client’s parting words: “God can take your trouble and change it into treasure, I’ve learned. He offers you an exchange. It’s your sins for His forgiveness, your tragedy and hurt for His healing, and your sorrow for His joy.”
R. Martin Palmer
Why not call payroll taxes an income tax?
To the editor:
I read with interest Art Callaham’s column in the May 20 Herald-Mail. In it, he wrote, “I’m willing to pay more federal income tax with one simple caveat — everyone pays some.” I agree.
Fifty percent of taxpayers pay no income tax at all, but they do pay payroll taxes. Payroll taxes are actually a tax on income and are lumped into the general fund to be used however the government wishes. Calling them an income tax instead of a payroll tax could help reduce the perceived disparity between what high-income and lower-income people pay in income taxes.
So, what if employees were to pay the entire amount of 15.3 percent of the payroll tax and call it an income tax. Self-employed people pay 15.3 percent now. It would be truth in labeling in action. Employers would be relieved of a tax on their businesses.
They might even give back some of the money they save to their employees in the form of higher wages, thereby making everybody happy. The only fly in this ointment is this: Would employers raise employees’ wages by 7.6 percent? As with everything else, some would and some wouldn’t, unless compelled to.