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WASHINGTON – In a speech at the Values Voter Summit, Ben Carson, former pediatric neurosurgury director at the Johns Hopkins Children's Center who shot to fame earlier this year when he gave a politically incorrect speech at the National Prayer Breakfast, compared President Obama's healthcare reform law to the institution of slavery and called Americans to not be ashamed of their Judeo-Christian heritage.
"'Obamacare' is really, I think, the worst thing that has happened in this nation since slavery," proclaimed Carson on Friday afternoon. "In a way, it is slavery…because it is making all of us subservient to the government."
"It was never about health care – it was all about control," the neurosurgeon added. Only when someone falls deathly sick, and has to struggle to survive do they understand the critical importance of health, Carson said. "It is the most valuable thing that you have – everything else pales in insignificance compared to your health…and that's the reason that your health should be controlled by you and not by the government," he proclaimed, to loud cheers and applause.
Along with healthcare, Carson mentioned the issues of abortion and marriage, arguing that America cannot call other nations "heathen" after having killed 55 million unborn babies. He also urged parents not to get a divorce, recalling his own parents, who divorced when he was 8-years-old.
"We need to recognize that God created the family structure for a reason, and marriage is a sacred institution by God himself," the neurosurgeon declared. He admitted that two adults have the right to bind themselves legally to gain visitation and property rights, but he also added that "there is no reason that man needs to change the definition of marriage."
Praising the hard work of his mother, Carson argued that the best way to help the poor isn't welfare but opportunity, "that can-do attitude that allows people to move up." When the government provides for the poor, they become dependent and "lose the drive that is necessary to achieve in our society," the neurosurgeon claimed.
"It's time – it's really time for the people – we, the people of America, to stop being afraid of the government and put it in its place," Carson declared.
"Vladimir Lenin, one of the fathers of socialism and communism, said that socialized medicine is the keystone to the establishment of a socialist state," the neurosurgeon recalled. He lamented the alleged lack of historical knowledge among the American people, that they would think fears about Obamacare irrational.
Citing French commentator Alexis de Tocqueville, Carson compared America's educational system in the early 1800s to the system today. Tocqueville reported that "anybody finishing the second grade was completely literate, could read the newspaper, could have a political discussion, could tell him how the government worked," the neurosurgeon said. Today, by contrast, 30 percent of Americans don't even finish high school.
The neurosurgeon mentioned another facet of American culture that impressed Tocqueville but has largely fallen out of practice today – the public use of religious principles. "What impressed him the most was the fact that we taught, in our public schools, values and principles, and we were not ashamed to use the Bible as the source of those values and principles," Carson said. Today, however, there is debate over whether or not America is a Judeo-Christian nation.
Those who doubt it "don't know anything about the founding of this nation," the neurosurgeon argued. "If we try to throw God out of our nation, he will neglect us, and we will go down the tubes."
"We must not be ashamed of our relationship with God," Carson proclaimed. Then he issued an immediate warning, "If we do, we're going to lose it."