October 23, 2009

An Argument for the Second Amendment

Justin Katz

Sometimes news out of Europe suggests the possibility that another revolution may be coming, such as this story from England:

On Monday afternoon, the mother gave birth to a girl by Caesarean section.

And 28 hours later, social workers arrived at the maternity ward to take the baby into care, after serving child protection papers on the patents.

Yesterday morning, a meeting of the Children’s Panel of Dundee Council decided the three youngsters still living at home should also go into care.

They are expected to be removed from the family home before the end of the week.

The family called "social services" over one child's developmental problems, and the government turned around and imposed weight limits and exercise regimes. (A picture of the family shows them to be heavy, but hardly unbelievably so.)

As Mark Steyn notes, the children are being take based on social worker "fears" of what their future "might" entail, and measuring parents on a literal scale is not many steps removed from assessing them on other grounds. Unhealthy can be a state of mind, and if the government controls healthcare, and if (through the efforts of Congressman Patrick Kennedy) it defines and covers emotional and intellectual well being, bureaucrats and social workers might not see much difference between being overweight and being, say, religious.

I'll tell you this: Any social workers who come to take my children away had better come armed, and everybody who approved the decision on up the chain of command had better lock their doors. If this is the government's wing under which our society is preparing to nestle, it would be an act of patriotism — of moral imperative — to cut it off.

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Watch out if you have soda in your fridge, or chips in your cupboard.

The government needs to stay out of people's lives. It appears that the government has become the enemy.

Posted by: kathy at October 23, 2009 12:33 PM

Ronald Reagan was prescient regarding the slippery slope of socialized medicine and an Orwellian state:


Posted by: Ragin' Rhode Islander at October 23, 2009 1:23 PM

Why do you think George Soros and his acolytes,including Obama,are so hot for gun control?So they can impose any damn thing they want on us,maybe with the help of a "civilian security force"culled from street gangs and prisons.Just read some history and find out where a lot of the Brownshirts originated.They were designated "auxiliary police" and given carte blanche to terrorize anyone who wasn't withn the program.
Take a look around this state-the social engineering Moveon.org turds are the ones pushing this insanity-grab up the guns and we'll all be safe(and neutered)and subuject to the whims of filth like Bawney Fwank and lamebrained idiots like Patrick Kennedy.
The social workers are the shock troops.
I don't mean ALL social workers-some do a great job just helping people in an apolitical way-but the ones being trained at the Poverty Institute by the likes of Kate Brewster and "Dr."Dan Weisman(also a leader of the ACLU)will be out there seizing kids because the parents bought them cap guns.
I only have adult children.I do have a grandchild and one on the way.
My son and daughter have a similar attitude to you.I completely endorse it.
The social engineers just don't know how to leave well enough alone.

Posted by: joe bernstein at October 23, 2009 2:56 PM

The UK government is infamous for literally stealing children. They can take children from the home and put them up for adoption to strangers for virtually any reason, including the possibilty that parents might at some future time emotionally abuse their children. There is no real definition of emotional abuse and the whole "potential" aspect makes me think of the movie The Minority Report, where people are arrested by the Pre-Crime Division for future crimes that they will supposedly commit. If you have any doubts that this happens, read this story, which was featured in the UK paper The Telegraph: http://stolenkids-thepress.blogspot.com/2009/07/telegraph-christopher-booker-04-jul.html.
These parents lost their kids because the headmistress at the daughter's school claimed the father had a "delusional belief system" because he wanted to pick his daughter up from school rather than have her wait outside and potentially be exposed to harm. The family actually has prominent political connections, so he had reason to believe his children could be targeted by kidnappers or the like. As it turns out, the kidnappers are the social services, sanctioned by the government to steal people's kids. This is what happens when the government is allowed to infiltrate every aspect of our lives. This is why we need to keep tabs on how much influence the government is allowed to have on our day-to-day existence. I fully agree with Justin and my father (Joe) that disarming the public is the first step towards taking away freedom. Without any ability to defend oneself the government is able to revoke all rights without fear that the people will rise up and revolt.
Just as a side note, the social services in the UK are consistently referred to as the "SS" by the papers. I think this is a bit tongue-in-cheek - their practices certainly seem to be in line with the Nazi philosophy!
One more side note: parents in the UK can actually be arrested for daring to speak about their cases. In other words, if the government steals your kids and you have the audacity to go to the media with your story, they can throw you in jail. While I enjoyed my visit to the UK eleven years ago and would like to visit again, I don't think I'd want to live there.

Posted by: Tabetha at October 23, 2009 7:42 PM

Yeah let's keep government out of our lives. Let's keep them out of decision about who we marry. Let's jeep them out of decisions about how we choose to end our lives after long illnesses. Let's keep them out of decisions about a womans choice to terminate an unwanted or unhealthy pregnancy. And let's keep the government out of decisions about if I want to smoke weed or not.

Posted by: Slipperygipple at October 24, 2009 9:01 AM

I pretty much agree with Slipperygipple. I don't want the government involved in the majority of day-to-day life decisions.

Posted by: Tabetha at October 24, 2009 5:44 PM

It's disappointing to hear of your agreement, Tabetha. Behaving as if there are no lines to be drawn between legitimate government action and illegitimate government action is what makes extremists of libertarians. One can't object to government confiscation of one's children if the government is permitted to outlaw marijuana? Utter foolishness, and not apt to inspire confidence that the speaker is amenable to discussion.

Some folks can't live by anything other than a simple all-applicable rule, and for some libertarians, that rule is one never unlearned post-adolescence.

Posted by: Justin Katz at October 24, 2009 6:34 PM

Marijuana is no more dangerous than alcohol or tobacco and that is legal. The drugs that pose a risk to public safety - heroin, crack, etc. - are a different story. Marijuana should be subjected to the same laws as alcohol, but until you can show me scientific evidence that it is in any more more dangerous, I will disagree with you on this one. In fact, the majority of studies have shown alcohol and tobacco to have more detrimental effects. Justin, I just don't understand your position on this one.

Posted by: Tabetha at October 24, 2009 10:30 PM

Legitimate government action, in my opinion, is for the purpose of a smoothly running society and public safety. I don't believe in any government action that seems to legislate morality because, beyond basic public safety, we should be allowed to make our own decisions about morality. That is why we have freedom of religion. I think that this is a perfectly sound argument. It is not an adolescent mindset to not wish to have others using their religious beliefs to try to force the law to encourage a certain mindset. Certainly people shouldn't drive after smoking marijuana but neither should they drive after drinking. That is why we have laws against driving under the influence. I have no problem with gay marriage, the legalization of marijuana, or the right to choose to end your own life when it comes to a terminal illness. As for abortion, I am not a fan and think there should be some restrictions, particularly for late term pregnancies. That involves another person's right to life. As for very early abortions, I do think some women are in very desperate circumstances and it may do more harm than good to completely leave them without options. It's not an easy decision. I don't think that I lose credibility, however, by suggesting that the government should not be legislating purely on a moral or religious ground. That is where my standpoint comes from. You don't agree and that is fine; we all have freedom of speech. However, I don't think that my argument is in any way less mature or credible than yours. We agree on some things and not on others. Let's leave it at that.

Posted by: Tabetha at October 24, 2009 10:40 PM


You're missing my point. I'm more or less ambivalent about the legality of pot. The point is that the belief that government cannot take fat people's kids away from them does not necessitate the belief that the government cannot legitimately make marijuana illegal. The judgment that all government power is arbitrary so no lines can be drawn between different instances of government power is false.

Indeed, you draw a distinction with abortion, based on a right to life. Slipperygipple --- with whom you expressed agreement --- did not. From his (or her) point of view, people should be able to do whatever they want, and there are no distinctions between different desires. That's what I was calling adolescent.

Posted by: Justin Katz at October 24, 2009 10:43 PM

I'd add that, in addition to the right to free speech, we have a right to determine the substance of our own government. Arguably, the right to speech exists mainly as a contribution to the right to self-government. So, you are free to vote and advocate for laws according to this set of beliefs:

I have no problem with gay marriage, the legalization of marijuana, or the right to choose to end your own life when it comes to a terminal illness.

But your fellow citizens must remain free not only to speak against such propositions, but also to vote and legislate against them. Otherwise our representative democracy is a sham.

Posted by: Justin Katz at October 24, 2009 10:52 PM
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