Monday, February 22, 2010

Uncle Sam or Father Sam?

This being my first Blog, I would like to introduce it by calling it my outlet for Saor Smaointe [seer smeencha] Gaelic for "free thoughts" (Intentionally named for the dual meaning). For those of you who know me, you are aware that I am seldom free with my thoughts to those I am unfamiliar with, and those who I am familiar with seldom wish to hear all of them. Like my unicorn collection or my fascination with melodramatic humor, (that was at one time, in my childhood, not humor) or how I irrationally romanticize the IRA. This Blog is for the ones that get lost in between and become sojourners in the abyss that is my psyche.

One such vagrant that has been staying with me of late is the never ending fight against governmental involvement in our personal lives. I apologize in advance for the intensity of this particular entry, future posts will doubtless be more light-hearted. But like I said, they get stuck in the abyss and when they come out it's like in Dr. Who when something comes back from a rift in time/space, or in Buffy, when Angel comes back from Hell, It's wild.

When did it become the role of the government to tell us what we can and cannot do with our personal property? Our personal property, being our body and anything we own (and yes, that includes my mace, a girl has got to defend herself!). The government should be there to protect the rights and property of its’ citizens, not to infringe on them. Consequently, the only time the government should be able to violate the rights of a citizen is if that citizen is violating the rights of someone else. And as far as rights go, one persons rights stop where the others start (punching for instance: rights of the fist vs. rights of the face). Problems arise when the government tries to outlaw certain personal practices. The outlawing of vices such as drugs, prostitution, and gambling creates an underbelly of crime. Next thing you know they will outlaw unhealthy food (If they take away my Oreos it's war!). This also, as a result, inhibits healthy competition in, what would be, legitimate businesses. Suddenly the simple everyday personal choices in life become illegal, taking up law enforcement resources that should be spent on crimes like murder, rape, and others that actually have victims. Does anyone want to see a chef being arrested for illegally importing trans fat from Uzbekistan?

When passing these laws does not prevent people from continuing these practices, what is the use if it does more harm than good? It is almost as if those voting for the laws are washing their hands of the larger societal problem. Instead of dealing with the moral solution to such problems they “do their part” and simply vote to make them illegal and are thus absolved of all guilt. If the majority of voting individuals condemn specific practices they should teach their children that such vices are wrong, not make them illegal. Uncle Sam is our Uncle, not our Father. Do you want him raising your children?

"Live free or die: Death is not the worst of evils."

-Gen. John Stark


  1. It's good for people to be subjected to your thoughts every once-in-a-while. The rate at which our government is gaining influence in the every day life is alarming. People have indeed forgotten the beginnings of government. It is strange to me how few people know that a government's sole purpose was originally to protect land rights. Democracy was never meant to subvert its' people's rights to own and operate businesses. It was meant to protect the freedom's people had, not regulate them.

    Love the title by the way.

  2. Nice blog. I thought it magic when you asked if anyone wanted to see a chef arrested for illegally importing trans fats from Uzbekistan, because that's actually something I HAVE always wanted to see.

    First off, I think it is important to point out that a lot of the legislation as far as vices are concerned is made at a state level, rather than a federal one. For example, prostitution is legal in certain parts of Nevada (and New York as well? Maybe I'm confused on that), and many states are taking a new legal stance on drugs (at least marijuana). Zum Beispiel, in Oregon the possession of cannabis is no longer criminalized, as long as the quantity is not too great.

    And if we are to discuss the origins of government and how they have changed their role, let's also consider the fact that the government is no longer overseeing 13 colonies. Times change, and so must the government.

    I'm not certain that legalizing drugs and other such vices will really change the amount of crime already related to those actions too drastically. Drug-related violence will probably remain high (that's kind of like a joke, with the word "high" being the fulcrum upon which the pun swings). However, you made an excellent point about the importance of each household instilling values into their children rather than leaving it up to the government to teach their kids. Grow a spine, parents. And stop making things so darn safe! You can't even buy a dang trampoline with real springs anymore!

    Sorry for the long comment. I did like the blog, and the title is cool. Gaelic! Why didn't I think of that? I had to stick with an acronym. . . .

  3. @Jey: This is for those times when you miss being subjected to my thoughts...

    @Ben: Long comment, how rude.

    I agree, it IS important to point out that they are state laws. It far superior to Federal. I'm glad that you picked up on that last bit. It's the part that I meant to emphasize. It really winds my clock that people no longer raise their own children.

    What DOES tamob stand for?

    P.S. Discussion on this blog is much encouraged!