Right or Left: Americans Should Choose Freedom
We often argue and debate our personal worldviews, almost to the point of physical altercation. There are well-known differences between the political and religious left and right, but there are also deep divisions among those who would consider themselves “likeminded.” This is because no two humans are alike. Thus, we can reasonably assume that no two humans are going to think, feel, or act in accordance with laws or principles in the exact same way. It is from this perspective—that no two individuals are the same—that I build my case for the return of America to its natural rights-based freedom.
Natural rights, whether one believes they are from God or not, are the basic principles of an individual’s right to their own life, their property, and lawful pursuits. These basic principles underscore every rule of law mankind can dream of, in the interest of creating the best balance between personal safety and personal freedom. This is not absolute freedom, which allows any behavior under the sun, including theft, rape, and murder. This freedom is the freedom from one another, as much as it is freedom for one another. Each individual has the right to not be murdered, not to have their property stolen, and not to be unlawfully impeded from their lawful pursuits. These natural rights are famously encapsulated, in written form, in the Declaration of Independence: “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”
The modern American faces several issues, all of which require thought, conversation, and ideas to address. Those of us who were born in the latter half of the 20th century, have known nothing other than the progressive bloated bureaucracy the government has grown to become. Our outlook on the issues of the day are skewed, because there is a general ignorance of history. Millennials, especially, are taught that the United States is the most generous country, because we have all of these wonderful social programs and international aid programs, aimed at alleviating suffering. That sticks with a person, in some cases, regardless of their upbringing. We are, in a sense, programmed to see the world through the progressive lens.
It is because of this ingrained progressivism that many modern Americans cannot bring themselves to wrap their minds around the freedom the founders fought for. In today’s world, that is a foreign concept. When it is discussed, it is treated as though it is outdated and failed, as a governing principle. Instead, “security” through government redistribution and government-controlled institutions is considered the new freedom. It is on freedom-lovers to break individuals free of this yoke of mediocrity, before the country is taken over by millennial-Bernie Sanders acolytes. This will happen, if people aren’t presented with the facts.
What I have come to realize is that the founders were incredible in their understanding of human nature and the fragile nature of the voting populace. The public is tossed about like the sea in the wind, reacting to everything without pausing for reflection and context. In moments of panic and anxiety, majorities can make decisions that seem well-meaning, but ultimately doom the entire nation to inevitable failure. Restoring and conserving freedom is the only option for maintaining that balance. The progressives and the conservatives can fight over their worldviews, but a free society staves off the advances of anyone who would seek to undermine the freedom of individuals to live, succeed, fail, learn, grow, prosper, and help each other of their own accord.
That is what is restored, when freedom is restored. That is the guarantee that the founders hoped to solidify within this great nation’s soul. The idea that free men and women, working hard and obeying the law, are capable of great things. That suffering can be kept to a minimum, as personal responsibility requires individuals to be accountable for themselves, leaving the portion who qualify as “truly needy” the blessing of having an entire nation of well-meaning providers, who will be glad to give freely to those who require generosity. The world would have that shining example of the city on the hill, undergirded by the natural rights our Creator built into man’s soul, entrusted by the Holy document that communicates the specifics of those rights and laws to man.
Without freedom, according to the natural rights which allow freedom to thrive, any nation is subject to the folly of nuanced and unproven attempts to create utopia. A utopia that will never exist on earth, so long as human beings are alive, with free will, slightly separated by our beautiful differences.
Differences that create natural inequalities. Differences that may also lead to innovative ideas of infringing upon the rights of a few, for the alleged “greater good” of a separate few, or even the whole. Choose freedom, and human beings get to be the authors of their own destiny. With freedom comes responsibility, and the potential to lose. However, little is acknowledged about the fact that the potential to lose is an excellent motivator! The founders’ freedom ultimately strikes that excellent balance between the freedom to succeed and the protection of life and property.