By Nathan Barton
In the last two commentaries, I discussed government and weeds.
In those, I raised the question of how government enforces laws, even without having any legitimate authority to do so. Laws which are supposed to protect people (especially children and stupid people). But laws which do NOT. Because these laws seldom really accomplish what ostensibly they set out to do.
Laws against weeds (whether noxious weeds in fields, yards, and roadsides; or marijuana) do not eliminate weeds, and they really do not control people being exposed to weeds. Laws which supposedly prevent murder do not. Laws which theoretically prevent fraud and theft do not. Instead, they simply give government power and money. They expand government and the parasites in government who live off of the rest of the people of the Fifty States.
(I wasn’t saying that weeds, or weed, are good. Or killing. Or theft and fraud. These things are bad for people.)
But government – and especially government with the power to control, regulate, or outlaw drugs and things that are not committing evil against other people – is worse. Worse for you, worse for other people, and worse for society.
First, because government’s claim to regulate these things for the benefit of the people is false. Their promises are lies. No government program to do this has ever succeeded. All they have done is waste time and money, and harm and kill people.
Second, government’s attempts to do this make life harder and more dangerous for all of us. There are many reasons for this.
The War on Some Drugs, like Prohibition before it, (and the concurrent wars against tobacco and many other like programs and campaigns) is based on the idea that government should use its (supposed) monopoly on violence so that you and I and everyone else can be FORCED to do what they think is best for us – for our own good, of course. (Who is “they” in this case? It can be a majority, government officials, lobbyists, a vocal and persuasive minority, or any group.)
Too many of us go along with that. I especially call out so-called conservative christians, even those who claim to be New Testament christians, and so many who claim to be political conservatives, including too many who say they are Libertarians and minarchists. We go along – or even advocate – the use of government power to force people to “do what is best for them” even when the “best” is unconstitutional, unscriptural (extra-biblical, as one person describes it), and nothing more than personal preferences.
We have to remember: in an earthly, physical (not spiritual) sense, all political power comes from the barrel of a gun: it is based on force, aggression, and a willingness to use it. Man-made laws only have teeth to them because ultimately they are backed up by, enforced by, people with guns. People who are employed by the State to do that. Whose job is to compel people to obey the will of the State (even if it’s called “The People”) to make us all comply with the dictates of the State. They are willing to, and do, use force to compel people to obey: force up to and including the use of deadly force. Government laws do not encourage or suggest compliance. They compel it, and use force to make people obey. Whether it is a “criminal law” or a “civil law.”
People – we! – are forced to obey the law. That is “law enforcement.”
And that is the reason that government -human or other, mandatory or voluntary – must be limited to dealing with those subjects, those issues or realms, which are clearly assigned to human rulers by the Scriptures (if you are a christian, as I am) or the Constitution (if you are a Constitutionalist) or natural law and the rights of man (if you are some other sort of minarchist or anarchist – the Declaration of Independence or the Covenant of Unanimous Consent if you follow L. Neil Smitn, for example).
And I don’t think any of those things give government – the State – 99.999% of what the government and state claims here in the Fifty States, or anywhere else in the human realm. If that.
Finally, by depending on the power of the State to use force to compel us to do good (or at least not do what is bad), we see that this is worse for society and for each and every one of us individually because this sort of behavior (control by government) prevents people from maturing beyond childishness into adults who can rightly handle things. Even (or especially) dangerous things. That is the certain result of such laws.
If we want to chart a course to true freedom, liberty, peace, prosperity, security, and maturity, we will limit human (civil) government to what is clearly stated in basic documents of human liberty: the Bible, the Declaration of Independence, and such. At a minimum. If we do not put it down like we would a rabid dog, which it has been throughout history and is today. Government – the State – may be nice to have, but it isn’t necessary.