July 2, 2017

Let Freedom Ring!

On this July 4th holiday, let us remember our heritage, our freedoms and those who have paid the price to protect them.

Freedom, liberty and the rights of the people should never be defined by the government to the people. It must always be defined by the people to their government.

Government, by its very nature, dictates, defines, regulates and intrudes. It will not and cannot limit itself. It has to be limited by those who empower it.

And that is the essence of freedom – that the government is prescribed by the people and not that freedom is determined by the government.

Does that mean that government is essential evil? Not at all. Neither anarchy or tyranny are desirable states in which to live, but the power over property, economy and freedom must remain in the hands of the people or it will automatically revert to tyranny. Every generation is responsible to clarify the lines of liberty to its government or be the victims of the tyranny that results.

In the beginning of this great nation a group of people understood this and also understood that the sovereignty of the King was by definition, tyranny itself. They understood that the rights of the individual were paramount to the social good and that government existed to protect and defend the rights of the individuals that it served and nothing more.

Frederic Bastiat in his little book, The Law, so eloquently describes the need for government to protect the rights of its people to work, grow, create and own property and to be protected by their government from the predator. Yet he warns that it is far too easy for the protector to become the predator without vigilance from those who create the government that serves them.

Freedom is, quite simply, freedom from intrusion of the predator who would take from us that which we create, whither the thief with gun and mask or the overly intrusive government which would take our possessions to give to the thief.

While philanthropy and the helping hand is always a part of the human experience and compassion is part of the healthy life, let it never be of compulsion.