Liberty means responsibility. That is why most men dread it.

- George Bernard Shaw

Prop 19 Freedom

In talking with someone in California about Prop 19, the legalization of cannabis proposition, it became clear that people want to be told what to do, and want to tell others what to do.

The stance of this man--a onetime heavy substance abuser and long time philosophically limp pseudo-conservative--was that he did not want to have such temptations placed in front of other people.

"But you are okay with having them put in jail?"

His reply was that they are not put in jail...really...very much.

"So, my body is not mine, it is the property of the government, and they can determine what I place in it?"

"Yes," was his response.

Yes?! My body is the property of the government? That is the frustrating part of discussing these issues with people who on one hand say they want a smaller government and freedom yet on the other hand want the government to control my body. Is their anything more sacred, more individualistic than what one does to their own body?

If I wanted to jack my body up with heroin each and every day, I am a moron! But, it is my body. If I choose to eat 12 pints of Bend & Jerry's each day, I am a moron! But, it is my body. If I want to enter a motorcycle race across the desert without support or water, I may be a fool, but it is my body I put at risk. Should I be put in jail for any of these "offenses"? If I steal to support these habits, then I have harmed someone else and should be punished, but I ask you to allow me dominion over my body.

Remember, if you have a right to tell me what I can do with my body I have the right to tell you what you can do with yours. You may not like what I do with my body and I may not like what you do with yours, but in a free society, we have the right to do to ourselves what we wish, as long as we do not infringe upon another.

If we do not have freedom over our own body, if we cannot agree that our own body is our sovereign domain, then there is no desire for freedom and we are forever to live under one another's tyranny, the tyranny of who is in power. Prop 19 in California is not about cannabis, it is about freedom, something we should fight to reclaim. Yes, freedom carries greater responsibility and greater risks, which is why it is so beautiful and so rewarding.

The choice Californian's face is simple: Freedom or fear?

posted at 11:24:59 on 10/20/10 by clearpolitics - Category: Freedom - [Permalink]

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