If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest of freedom, go home from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or your arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that you were our countrymen.
This is one of my favorite quotes, from one of my favorite founding fathers. However, I think it needs to be updated just a little. I trust Mr. Adams won’t mind if I re-phrase his words this way:
If you love your stuff more than your freedom, and your safety and slavery more than personal responsibility, leave us. We do not want your opinion or your help. Cower on your knees as you lick the hand that feeds you. May your chains not be so heavy that they crush you, and may we all forget that you were ever one of us.
I had one of my Face Book friends tell me that we are not oppressed by our government. He even challenged me to name one freedom that I have lost. Dear reader, I cannot tell you how loudly I wanted to tell this ‘friend’ to go home and cower, and that I would do my best to forget that he was ever an American. Then I realized that he honestly believes that we are as free today as we have ever been — maybe even more so. That is when I realized just how lost we are. When an American cannot see the despotism in this nation, then what does it mean to be American anymore?
Well, I know what it used to mean:
Where liberty dwells, there is my country.
— Benjamin Franklin
It meant that an American loved liberty more than anything else in this world, even their country, even their own life. But we do not have liberty any more, nor do we have many Americans. How do I know that?
“The right to use a thing comprehends a right to the means necessary to its use, and without which it would be useless.”
Well, I do not have a right to use my car without buying permission from the government. Try driving without a license and a registration and see what happens.
I do not have a right to use my property without buying permission from the government. Try building or adding on to your property without a permit and see what happens.
I don’t even have a right to earn a living without buying permission from the government; which means I cannot use my labor without buying permission from the government; which means I cannot use my very life without buying permission from the government. Just try to start and run a business without a license and see what happens.
If you have to get permission, especially if you have to buy that permission, then you do not have a right in it — period! This means you literally do not have a right to your own life anymore, but then, this nation is too ignorant to understand this. All they care about is how many likes their picture of their lunch got.
Now, I just gave three examples of liberties we have lost in the past one hundred years or so. I could easily name many more, but, if these three do not convince you, a hundred more won’t, either. That’s because we have been seduced into surrendering our liberty in return for promises that are never kept. And that’s because we’ve become a nation of lazy cowards who want a government parent to fed them and wipe their bottom:
Most men, after a little freedom, have preferred authority with the consoling assurances and the economy of effort it brings.
— Walter Lippmann, hero of the Progressive movement and modern media.
As long as those lording over us keep giving us scraps of bread and keep us entertained, the majority of us will gladly sell our liberty — and that of our neighbor, too — and all for little more than a promise that others will treat us like children. Well, even if they spoil you, they are still lording over you, and that means you have voluntarily agreed to be their slave. And this is what they have done: they have built a cage so ‘comfortable’ that we do not see it. Hollywood called it ‘The Matrix,’ but it is the same thing: a gilded cage. So long as they feed you, give you your internet and sports, your Face Book and YouTube, you will accept whatever chains they lay upon you. Well, that’s well and good, but that’s not America, and such people are not Americans.
Now, others may not care, but I wonder what became of those Americans who would rather die on their feet than live on their knees? Those who would rather accept their chains may be citizens of this country, but they are in no way an Americans. Such a people may tell me I have not lost my liberty, but they are in no way sane. That’s because, deep down, they know they are slaves, but they have been convinced they not only have to accept their slavery to get their promised rewards, but they have to defend it, as well. Now, how can you say a person who knows they are defending a lie for the promise of another lie a sane person? I can only think of one way you can say such a person could be considered sane, and that is if they are a coward. But then, that brings us right back to my original assertion: cowards having no business thinking of themselves as Americans.
So, you are still free — but the government can snoop on everything you do.
You are still free, but they can search you without a warrant.
You are still free, but they can take your property without trial or recourse.
You are still free, but they can jail you without charge.
You are still free, but they can force you to accommodate that which you believe to be immoral.
You are still free, but they can keep you from practicing your faith, and living according to your conscience.
You are still free, but they can force you to pay to support foreigners who seek to destroy this nation.
You are still free, but they can force you to pay for murder.
Yeah, you are free…
BTW: that opening quote, in fuller context:
Distinguishing between Patriots and cowards, Samuel Adams, said: “Contemplate the mangled bodies of your countrymen, and then say, ‘What should be the reward of such sacrifices?’ … If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude than the animating contest of freedom…crouch down and lick the hands, which feed you. May your chains sit lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen!”