J Robert Smith
- May 4, 2020
- 4 min read
In questions of power, let no more be heard of confidence in man, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the constitution.
Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.
This is clear. In the contests between petty tyrant governors and the people, the people will prevail. The people are too numerous. Liberty and rights are coded into their DNAs. People born to freedom, and accustomed to its exercise, will not relinquish their liberties. No exigency is compelling enough. This contagion isn’t grounds enough. No excuse passes muster.
The law of unintended consequences is in full play. Governors’ highhandedness is sparking revolts. Ordinary citizens, unaccustomed to taking to the streets in protest, are doing so – at Huntington Beach, California… at Lansing, Michigan… at Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, among other places. In the coming days, as frustration and anger rises, protests will ripen into full-fledged rebellions.
How to avert this outcome? Repressive shutdowns must end quickly. People’s rights must be restored, post haste. If Constitution-trampling governors don’t stand down, more and more liberty-loving Americans will stand up – and act.
Have the nation’s establishments gone mad? COVID-19 isn’t the existential threat it’s portrayed. Raw data and the facts on the ground bear this out. We’re in the midst of a great and wasteful – and dangerous – overreaction. In hindsight, the overreaction may be deemed what social psychologists call a “collective hysteria.”
The shutdowns are excused as necessary because of a pandemic. Yet Americans in times past have faced far worse contagions – far more lethal, impacting a much broader swath of people. The 1918-20 Spanish Influenza. Then the 1968-69 Hong Kong Flu. Americans then weren’t deprived their freedoms. Neither contagions of recent vintage, SARS and Swine Flu – both deadly in their ways – were regarded as threats sufficient to close society and trample liberties.
Much of the nation’s economy is shuttered. 30 million plus Americans have been pushed out of jobs and onto relief. Small businesses, recently thriving, hang by threads. Many will never recover. Only two months previously, the nation enjoyed the best economy in 50 years. Employers couldn’t fill jobs fast enough.
Society, involving the daily normal interactions of 330 million citizens, is frozen.
This dance with delusion invites disaster.
Without fanfare, without even the semblance of explanation, governors took it upon themselves to cancel citizens’ constitutional rights… to aggregate powers to themselves… to impose fines and jail for anyone who dares disobey their edicts. You will wear a face-mask – or face retribution. You sun yourself on a beach – expect punishment. You dare attend a church service, even respecting social distancing norms – you may face jail.
Americans have no betters. In freedoms and rights, we’re all equal. Michigan’s Governor Whitmer is no monarch or commissar. Nor is California’s Gavin Newsom… Pennsylvania’s Tom Wolf… New York’s Andrew Cuomo… Virginia’s Ralph Northam… Illinois’J.B. Pritzker… Massachusetts’ Charlie Baker… Maine’s Janet Mills. These governors, in the name of public health and safety, practice, in forms and by degrees, tyranny.
Americans are steadfast in rejecting tyranny. From the Revolution to the 21st Century, Americans have shed blood, died, and expended treasure defeating a British King, abolishing slavery, beating the jackbooted thuggery of fascism, and vanquishing genocidal Russian communists.
Mark these words. Today’s homegrown petty tyrants aren’t nearly as formidable as King George. Continued lock downs or glacially slow reopening of states will be met by increased, widespread peaceful civil disobedience.
How did the citizens of East Berlin finally bring down the Berlin Wall? They chose to ignore it – en masse. East German “security” forces simply couldn’t stop the exodus to the West. The Wall was overrun. Petty tyrant governors, will not, finally, stop citizens from reclaiming their God-given rights. And rights will be reclaimed, not bestowed.
No doubt, some governors have blundered into tyranny. Misapprehensions and fear drove them. Well intentioned though they may have been, they would do well to recall what the way to hell is paved with.
But others are by instinct, statists, who eagerly gather the reins of power in their hands… who see constitutional rights as obstacles to imposing their ways. They do not desire to serve the people so much as to dictate and condescend to the people. Their true anti-liberty colors are in full display.
Politicians who have been awaiting a crisis not to waste, better rethink. They’re imperiousness courts political convulsions that will pose greater threats to their careers than the most potent virus.
What do you think? Weigh in!