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Liberty lost

December 6, 2007

Not long ago, I had a conversation with an acquaintance regarding the many losses of liberty that have taken place during the span of my lifetime. He didn’t agree with my viewpoint and asked me to step away from the crack pipe. I explained my radical philosophy as follows:

  • You can buy property, but can’t develop it without permission
  • You can’t hunt on your property without permission
  • You can’t drive a car without permission
  • You can’t own a pet without permission

He stopped me at that point to tell me that he wasn’t buying anything I’d said up to that point. Rather than delve too deeply into the workings of titles, deeds, surveys, environmental impact statements, etc, I asked him if he understood the reason a building permit is so named. Similarly, I asked him if he understood that there were seasons devoted to hunting specific animals and that a hunting license is required before engaging in the sport of hunting. A car must be licensed, as must the driver. Even pets must be licensed — and vaccinated.

We’ve become so used to being told what to do, what to pay, when and where to go, that we’ve forgotten what it was like to be free.

If you think you’re up to a little stress for the sake of an exercise in liberty, go to your local library and check out a few books dealing with explosive devices.

“Now wait a minute,” you say. “There are security mechanisms in place to protect us from terrorists.” Well, maybe. Then again, perhaps it’s all about controlling aspects of our lives that used to be personal.

But if you really don’t think that’s a fair challenge, try going to a bank and withdrawing a sum of cash in excess of let’s say $15,000.00 from one of your accounts. Hold it for a couple of days, and then walk down the street to another bank. Open a new account and deposit $10,000.00 of the cash and keep the rest out for a while. Rest assured, your transactions will be reported to the IRS and the FBI. You may even have uninvited visitors at your home as a result of your highly suspicious, potentially criminal (if not terrorist) actions with your own money.

Recently the House of Representatives passed H.R. 1955 and the Senate is currently considering S. 1959. These bills have been collectively referred to as “The Thought Crimes Bill.” Provisions in this bill void several of the protections guaranteed by the 1st Amendment. And of course, if you’re not a terrorist, you don’t have anything to worry about this chipping away of your liberty.

All I’m trying to say is that we must be vigilant. The people we elected to represent us must be watched. Their official voting records and legislative activities are available here and here. If you find that your elected officials aren’t upholding their oath of office, to protect and defend the Constitution, vote for someone who will in the next election.

It’s still our country. We haven’t lost all of our liberties yet.

Until next time,
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