We Partake in the Sins of Others By Leaning on Government

On , The Friends’ Review published an article by someone identified only as “Z” entitled “Partaking of the Sins of Others.” Here’s an excerpt:

As we cannot “go out of the world,” it is worthy of careful examination how far we should hold ourselves entirely isolated from the community; and how far, by living with others as neighbors and friends, we may become partakers of their sins. Should we “remain in the ship,” or cut loose from it entirely? Different persons have honestly adopted differing views. There are some Christian sects which refuse in religious matters to have any connection with others; there are others who endeavor to extend their influence and useful labors among those who may differ in certain points. It is so in sustaining human governments, nearly all of which are upheld by military power. Most of us pay taxes [Mark 12:17], although nearly all of the money thus raised goes to build forts, construct war ships, pay armies, establish the military rule over the soldiers, a rule more cruel and despotic, as our friend Hubbard has asserted, than American slavery. War slaughters thousands and carries untold misery to desolated homes; but many professed peace men pay taxes which support it, and all the present three political parties place men in nomination and vote for them, who have never repudiated war, and some who have acquired their fame in its achievements. Even those who will not thus partake of its responsibilities, accept the protection of military governments by using government bank notes, the payment of which is enforced if necessary by military law, and they accept titles to the land they occupy, their control of which is virtually sustained at the point of the bayonet, should the government titles be questioned by lawless marauders.