I was content living my life pursuing happiness down the roads where I thought I might find it. I had no desire to ruin my reputation, expend my
resources or sacrifice my time by involving myself in the political process. But down every road I took, I found myself more and more entangled in
the results of that process. During my lifetime it’s been a process dominated by the Democrat and Republican parties. I’ve noticed that while
they’ve become increasingly adept at splitting ever finer hairs to create a difference between themselves, they have both adopted the same
philosophy. That to every problem, no matter how great or small, there must be enacted a governmental solution. They do disagree, for instance,
about whether the government should manage our healthcare. They only disagree on the details of how to go about it. Due to this common basic
philosophy, the Democrat and Republican parties are actually a single party, displaying the same disagreements over how to implement the
policies which derive from their common philosophy, which is apparent in any other single political party.
This has abrogated our traditional two-party system with unfortunate results. In attempting to solve all our problems, and guarantee everyone
happiness, here’s a short list of what Demopulicans or Republicrats have done for my fellow citizens and me.
They’ve placed us trillions of dollars in debt. They’ve inflated our currency five hundred percent, and taken half of all we produce in taxes.
They’ve restricted who we may do business with, requiring us to do business with some and forbidding us to do business with others. They’ve
forbidden us the use of medicines or healers they have not approved, even when we have been stricken with fatal diseases their approved
methods cannot cure.
They’ve required us to participate in insurance programs against our will. They’ve openly boasted of using governmental force to manipulate the
economy to the benefit of some and to the detriment of others. They’ve used race, gender, age and economic status to determine benefits we
may receive from, and penalties we must pay to our government.
They require disclosure of our private business affairs. They’ve restricted the wages we may charge, the services we may provide, the commerce
in which we may engage, the products we may manufacture, the plants we may grow and the things we may own, even on our own property, and
using our own resources.
They’ve failed to provide justice in the courts, and have abused the jury system. They’ve allowed arrest to be made without warrants or probable
cause. They’ve seized property without due process of law. They’ve conducted criminal prosecutions without allowing the accused to confront his
accuser. They’ve restricted our right of self-defense. They’ve dictated the education our children will receive and have required them to attend
unsafe and substandard schools. They’ve bribed state legislators with Federal highway funds and have used Federal law to dictate to local
communities the services they must provide. They’ve passed bills of attainder and ex post facto laws. They’ve used our resources to defend and
support tyrants abroad. They’ve engaged in acts of war without permission of our representatives. They’ve subjected the sovereignty of the
American people to foreign powers. They’ve done all this at the point of the government’s gun, and often in direct violation of our constitution.
Reflecting the rationale of the old Southern slave holders, they claim they have done these things to better care for us and to protect us from our
own ineptitude. The question is less why I am a Libertarian, then why I am not in armed rebellion against such tyranny.
As a Vietnam veteran, I’ve seen firsthand the ravages of war, and would exhaust all other options before resorting to such an extreme. Our
founders understood this reluctance, stating in the Declaration of Independence, “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. Our founding fathers also
understood that some things are worse than war, slavery being one of them. The next line in the same document reads that: “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.
In an effort to allow their posterity a means to throw off the despotic tendencies of government, without the bloodshed and desolation of war, our
founders established a political system which would allow for change by the will of the people. For that they have my heartfelt gratitude.
Most people in America today do not see Liberty as a whole concept, being preoccupied with a particular freedom they are denied. Reproductive
rights, the right to educate their child as they see fit, gun rights, the right to seek the medical treatment they desire, or the right to run their
business as they please are among the individual rights Americans see as threatened. As more and more people realize all these rights are
interconnected, as they realize they cannot have liberty for their particular concern if they are willing to deny liberty to others with other concerns;
they become Libertarian. This is why the Libertarian Party is the fastest growing party in the nation. Libertarians do not believe in the initiation of
force or fraud to achieve social or political goals. They believe all human interaction should be voluntary. They believe free men should be held
responsible for the damage they do to others and their property and otherwise should not be molested. They believe the greatest blessing for all
mankind come as a result of individual liberty and the greatest evils result from the abridgment of individual liberty.
These are the same beliefs I hold. These are the values I was taught as a child. I may think my friend is taking a foolish risk by not wearing a seat
belt, but I would not send an armed man to rob him if I thought he was not taking the safety precautions I thought he should.
I cannot convince myself that it is right to allow my government do things that I would think were wrong for me to do myself. No government
should have greater rights and privileges than its individual citizens. No government should be allowed to enslave its people. Duty will not allow
me to stand by while mine does. Duty to myself, my family, my God and my country have compelled me to become an active Libertarian.