Retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson reminisced Wednesday about a bygone time of limited government—and bear attacks—when asked at a CNN town hall how he reconciled Christian values of caring for the poor with the GOP’s current approach to the social safety net.
“We the people have the responsibility to take care of the indigent in our society. It’s not the government’s job,” Carson said.
The Constitution does not mention caring for the poor, he added. Then Carson pivoted into an analysis of pre-New Deal America that, for some reason, referenced bear maulings.
“In the old days of America when communities were separated by hundreds of miles, why were they able to thrive? Because if it was harvest time and the farmer was up in the tree picking apples and fell down and broke his leg, everybody pitched in and harvested his crops for him. If somebody got killed by a bear, everybody took care of their family.”
“We have a history of taking care of each other,” he added.
Carson then blamed former Presidents Woodrow Wilson and Lyndon B. Johnson for the proliferation of federal welfare programs.
“Now, how’d that work out?” he asked the audience rhetorically.
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