Being Independence Day, I want to put thoughts together about our liberty and what’s most important to remember. Had I sat down to write something myself, I hope it would’ve turned out like Timothy’s post at The One-Handed Economist. Every word but one is true, and that one word is only a quibble of hyperbole.
It has come to pass that we obtain freedom too cheaply, and thus we do not value it. Unlike generations before us, unlike our forefathers, and unlike many in much of the world today, we’re born with liberty and face no great struggle in keeping most of it. Or at least keeping enough to go about our daily lives without too much hassle. And parts get neglected, or we don’t feel too bad about giving up things at the margin: flashing an ID here, filling out a form there, being searched without cause this other place…. And each transgression taken individually perhaps isn’t that much, but taken in sum the results are disastrous. To simply enter into an agreement with a private party to hold our money, we must show two government pieces of identification. To move from one state to another by air, we must show ID and walk barefooted through the airport. It’s come to the point where we are not even secure in our homes. Liberty dies slowly while nobody is watching.
I’d change “nobody” to “everybody,” but yeah, what he said.