Ronald Reagan said it best: “Government exists to protect us from each other. Where government has gone beyond its limits is in deciding to protect us from ourselves.”
I’ve been away for a couple of weeks. it was a combination of a lack of interesting news and some big events in my personal life. In any case, I read this article in the Washington Post that got me roaring right back to blogging.
Bit by bit, big government is chipping away at our freedoms. Each piece by itself is nothing major, but over the slow accumulation of years it begins to add up. The regulations in your life continue to compile and in the end, you are far less free and able to make decisions for yourself. If the FDA gets away with this, what is next? If salt, an essential nutrient can be regulated, what about trans fat, fat in general, sugar, red meat, etc. I am reminded by Martin Niemoller’s poem:
“THEY CAME FIRST for the Communists,
and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Communist.
THEN THEY CAME for the Jews,
and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Jew.
THEN THEY CAME for the trade unionists,
and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a trade unionist.
THEN THEY CAME for the Catholics,
and I didn’t speak up because I was a Protestant.
THEN THEY CAME for me
and by that time no one was left to speak up.”
Granted its a much darker topic, but I think you understand the message. Government regulation is the first step down the slippery slope the above poem embodies. We are not there yet by far, but take pause. We haven’t just stepped onto the slippery slope, we are starting to slide down. Case in point:
– Seat belt laws went from a secondary offense where you couldn’t be pulled over for it by itself to a primary driving offense where you could.
– The same can be said for motorcycle helmet regulation
– All the various rules, regulations, and restrictions on products and activities of:
A) a sexual nature (sex toys, strip clubs etc);
B) vehicles like dirt-bikes, snow-mobiles, scooters, etc
C) public smoking laws
D) exotic pets
The list goes on. Everything here is to protect you from yourself. In each case, there are self-reliant, responsible ways to address each of the issues, but government doesn’t trust you do to it, so they do it for you. Smoking is my favorite. If you don’t want smoke in your favorite bar, then open your own bar, copying everything but allowing patrons to smoke. You create a business opportunity and competition…things that are cornerstones to the American identity!
Restrictions on your food is just the nex step. These regulations give way to easily revoked freedoms, which eventually give way to the rights you don’t care about, which eventually give way to the rights you don’t use, until eventually there is nothing left to stop our most sacred rights from being stripped.
That is where this slippery slope lands you – somewhere in a 1984-esque Orwellian police state. It is unfathomable, but you can be comforted that these United States of America will be long gone (except in name) before that day comes to pass.