What does it mean to be in the “liberty movement?” Well, I guess, it means you want to move society toward liberty. So what is liberty?
I suggest there is no better authority than Thomas Jefferson. He said that “no man has a natural right to commit aggression on the equal rights of another, and this is all from which the laws ought to restrain him.”
There ya go. Can anyone who owns a Gadsden flag disagree with Mr. Jefferson? I think not.
So, according to the father of the American liberty movement, liberty means man should be free to do anything that does not infringe upon the natural rights of another.
Once we start making exceptions to this rule, we have forfeited all moral highground. Once we say, “well, doing X doesn’t infringe upon the rights of another, but it is still such a bad idea, the law ought to restrain people from doing it,” we have opened the entire debate to what justifies exceptions to Jefferson’s definition.
Who would argue such a thing? Well, we all know professed believers in liberty who say they absolutely believe in Jefferson’s vision, but marijuana is an exception because smoking weed is too important an issue to leave up to individuals. The state must take control. That is why they oppose Colorado’s proposed Amendment 64.
These people no longer have any moral ground upon which to claim liberty as a reason to keep the state out of healthcare. The “progressive” merely has to point out he believes in liberty, too, but that health care is just too important to leave it up to individuals. The state must take control. That is why they favor Obamacare.
So, how can one distinguish between the person in the liberty movement and the person in the progressive movement in such an instance?
One can not.
This, my friends, is why freedom is dangerous. Live dangerously. Don’t be scared of it. Embrace it. Without exception. Can you imagine a truly free society? How great it would be? If achieving that goal means we – GASP! – have to let people smoke marijuana, is that really that high a cost? I say it is a pittance.