Most have no idea what “freedom” means.
Once upon a time people knew it more. That’s because Americans were once freer. Though our American civilization was never perfectly free for all, and was downright murderous for some, the fact is that we live in a lost and broken world, and anyone who believes political systems are failures because they’re not absolutely perfect are nothing but fools or liars (and, thus, probably liberals).
I say most Americans don’t know what freedom means because government at all levels within the United States has grown exponentially the past 100 years. Americans – both Republicans and Democrats – don’t seem to understand that the bigger and more powerful our own government is, the less freedoms we have. Americans don’t seem to understand that freedom is the highest ideal we were intended to live for (and I make the case for why in One of the Greatest Lessons in all history from the United States of America), and that our own government has always been the greatest enemy of our freedoms, as the governments of all peoples throughout all history have always been their greatest enemies as well.
After all, which government is more likely to steal your money, steal your wealth, steal your property, take your children, force drugs into their bodies, force them into education camps, force you into education camps, force drugs into your body, poison your food, destroy your ability to grow your own, starve you, surveille your communications, tell you what you can say, take away your weapons, conscript you for war, tell you which car you can drive, tell you how to drive it, prevent you from starting a business, tell you how to run one if they let you, shut it down when they want, and throw you in jail for these and a thousand more arbitrary reasons: your government or a foreign government?
The answer is YOUR GOVERNMENT.
If I were to commit any of the above actions against you, I would be regarded as a criminal. I would go to jail. If a foreign government tried the above, your government would call such an act of war (as they don’t want the competition).
Yet, when a people’s own government does such things, it’s fine. It’s for protection. It’s for the community. It’s for the greater good. It’s all sanctioned because people voted for the legislators who created these laws in the first place. Ain’t democracy great?
No. No. No. Democracy isn’t great. Democracy is rule by the majority. It makes seem legitimate the notion that if a majority of people say something should or must be so, and have elected “representatives” to government who vote on such, and vote yes, it is good and just because the people have spoken. The only restraint to the growth of government power in a democracy is majority vote. There are really no other limiting principles.
Of course this thinking is pathetically shallow and dangerous. At its essence, democracy is rule by the mob, and the mob is capable of decreeing the most unjust laws that make people criminals for the most arbitrary reasons. There’s nothing virtuous about this. Therefore there’s nothing virtuous about democracy. The majority can be as tyrannical as one man.
I mean, I can’t believe I have to point out to adult Americans that if the “majority” votes that you can’t wear green shirts on Tuesday, it’s justified to throw you in jail for this because the majority has spoken. If the “majority” says you must give away your money for government reeducation camps; if the “majority” say you must pay money for a war on the other side of the world; if the “majority” say you must join the army for a war on the other side of the world; so on and on and on and so forth; it’s justified to throw you in jail if you refuse.
Are you understanding this?
Again, there is no limit to what government can decree if the only limiting principle of government is majority vote. The majority can decree anything. Therefore you don’t have any rights. You only have privileges. You only have permissions which can be as arbitrarily revoked as they were given. Therefore you can’t be free.
So what is freedom really?
It’s actually fairly simple. It means we have the right – not the privilege – given to us by God Almighty – and not by governments of men and women – to do what we please with our life, our liberty and our property, so long as we do not violate the life, liberty or property of another man, woman or child. Got that? The best way to articulate the intended form of American government is a “Constitutional Republic,” that is, a society governed by a government with precise strictures – called the Constitution – on its ability to use force to prevent the free exercise of our God-given and unalienable rights. (Though enacting such a government by no means a guarantees protection of freedoms, as American history clearly shows).
In a free country, we can say what we please; we can grow what we please; we can create what we please; we can sell what we please; we can buy what we please; we can live where we please; we can travel where we please; so on an so forth, so long as we do not violate the life, liberty or property of another man, woman or child enjoying the same rights as they pursue their own version of happiness. Ultimately, so long as we do not thieve, rob, assault, kidnap, murder or perform other heinous acts that are legitimately crimes, which justly warrant the deprivation of our rights because we first unjustly violated the rights of another, we can do what we want. Got that?
As a free man, I have the right to plant a garden. I have a right to own a cow. I have a right to sell my vegetables and my raw milk to my neighbors without some pathetic bureaucrat saying I must pay money to the government to get permission – to get a license – to do so. A man is not a free man when the government sends its men with guns to arrest said man for selling such things without a license. How can a man be free when he is in jail? How can he be free when he merely faces the threat of jail for doing what he has the God-given unalienable right to do?
He’s not. His government has become a tyrannical master who treats him like a slave. His government is his oppressor. And who has the man hurt? Whose rights did the jailed raw milk seller violate? Nobody’s.
The man did not stick a gun to the heads of his neighbors. He didn’t force them to part with their money, their property, and gave them milk to make his transaction seem legitimate (as government itself does all the time). Had the milk seller done so, he would be guilty of armed robbery. That is a crime. It would thus be justice that the milk seller have his liberty violated by spending time in jail, and be deprived of his property by paying a compensation to the injured party.
However, when John Arbuckle buys milk from Frank Drebin on his own free will, and Frank sells John the milk on his own free will, and John parts voluntarily with his money, and Frank parts voluntarily with his milk, and they both are happier because of this voluntary exchange, there is no injured party! There is no crime! It is only injustice that would imprison Frank for this.
Countless other examples, in countless other scenarios of a person’s private and public life, I could provide of how a free society is meant to function. Regardless, they all involve the application of the understanding that our most fundamental rights – the right to life, liberty and property which are the foundation of all other rights – come from God, and, thus, we have the right to do as we please so long as we don’t violate the rights of another. It is with this understanding that free people must look upon all actions of government, and ascertain whether or not said actions protect freedoms or take them away.
“What about taxes? What about roads, schools, police and the military? What about the most basic things that a free market can’t provide?”
Many respond to arguments in favor of liberty like this. Each of those issues can be addressed and rebutted in a surgical manner. Even if I cede only governments can build roads and schools – which I reject – it must be made clear that the acceptance of violations of our property rights through taxation opens the door to unlimited other taxing violations for purposes that can all be spun as equally crucial as government indoctrination centers, I mean, schools. Taxation is at best a Pandora’s Box. Literal “armed robbery” is the best phrasing. Any American who doesn’t understand this doesn’t understand freedom. However, how far libertarianism – the philosophy of freedom – can, in fact, be applied to all human action and society is not the ultimate point of this post.
Whereas I fully admit my above articulations endeavoring to make clear the mechanics of a free society are imperfect, I nonetheless assert my words are at least the beginning of a proper lens to ascertain the just and unjust nature of a man’s own government. It is because Americans never learned these above fundamental conceptions and applications of our rights that we accept the explosive growth of government tyranny we have seen in the 20th and 21st centuries, and we can only expect more as we become ever more oblivious to the ideal of America.
It is because we never learned the above that we call America a democracy. It is because we never learned the above that we can accept the Federal Reserve System, the New Deal, the Welfare State, the Warfare State, the War on Poverty, the War on Terror, the Patriot Act, the Department of Homeland Security, NSA surveillance, Obamacare, Covid Lockdowns, Forced Masking, Forced Vaxxing, Wuhan and Ukrainian biolabs, the Great Reset, and thousands upon thousands of other parasitical government programs entirely dependent on We the People to serve as the host body for our own destruction.
Benjamin Franklin said, “People deserve the government they have.” The Orwellian levels of tyranny Americans now face is entirely our fault because we never learned the mental faculties necessary to recognize the growth of government powers as antithetical to our rights and freedoms. We have turned our backs on the faith and values of our ancestors. We received the greatest gift one generation can give another – that of freedom – and contemned it, and we can only pay a terrible price for this.
Thomas Jefferson penned one of the mightiest documents in all of human history. The Declaration of Independence was to teach us in perpetuity the basics of freedoms. Now we ignore it. Now we ignore him because he owned slaves.
Again, we will pay the price.