Saturday, February 12, 2011

Imagining freedom

For most of us, this is hard to do, but Lesley Swann at the Tenth Amendment Center paints a clear picture, imagining what Patrick Henry would say if he had to live in our day. Following is an excerpt:

“If you want to control the future, you must strip the next generation’s ability to imagine anything different.” – Ernie Hancock
We Americans have become so conditioned to accept whatever our government throws at us in the name of “safety” that we have completely forgotten what it is to live free and be secure in our persons. Our lives are so filled by surveillance cameras, worries about terrorism, fears about food safety, fears about illegal drugs, and other issues that we have forgotten the basics of our republic’s founding. As Mr. Hancock’s statement points out, if we can no longer imagine what it is to be free, then our future is going to be one where we lose more and more of our freedoms to the surveillance of the nanny state. Patrick Henry didn’t give his impassioned speech demanding “give me safety, or give me death.” He was prepared to give up safety and in fact his very life when he said:
Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!
What would Patrick Henry say if he had to go through airport security today? I imagine some TSA agents and all Americans present would get a very fiery and passionate earful about allowing the freedoms that he and the rest of our Founders fought so hard to gift us to waste away. Just as we imagine Patrick Henry giving TSA agents a tongue lashing, we also have to start imagining the world in which we want to live just as Mr. Hancock pointed out. This is not easy, as quite frankly, it’s a world in which most people alive today have never lived. It was a world in which our Founders had never lived either, but they dared to imagine a different world and worked to bring their imagining to reality. Thanks to them, that world existed here once, and it can again. Like our Founders, we must imagine that world and work to make it happen at all levels of government – federal, state, and local.
I will be helping this along with my book, Governing Ourselves (preview), which I hope to get published this summer.

No comments: