Responsible Liberty

This is not a political debate. Don’t anyone dare to respond with propaganda talking points. These are the dispassionate, scientific and historical facts:

I saw a homemade billboard the other day that read “Liberty is worth dying for!”  This insufficiently subtle (also insufficiently educated/intelligent/compassionate) protest was another way of saying “You can’t make me wear a mask!” Au contraire. As citizens of the USA we are compelled to abide by the definitions of Liberty which the framers of the Constitution debated, accepted, and integrated into all the founding documents we still regard and review today. The definition of Liberty they adopted was that which John Stuart Mill wrote in his famous treatise “On Liberty.”

Mill’s 100 pages cover an exhaustive philosophy on what it means to be responsibly free in a representative democratic republic (that’s the official name for our form of government). This treatise can be boiled down to this simple (and what should be obvious) sentence: “You have the right to do whatever makes you happy, until it interferes with the next person’s freedom.”  Because uneducated people don’t know this, they have the most difficult time identifying that line where your freedom ends and mine begins. Therefore, government steps in to say, “Yes, that freedom is guaranteed” or, “No, you’ve crossed the line into your neighbor’s freedom.”  And sometimes, when the government realizes one is too stupid to even guard their own life/freedom, they’ll step in and make a mandate the framers couldn’t foresee at their stage of technology. Seatbelt laws are a perfect example. If you’re too stupid to not understand the importance of this safety law, your discernment is so lacking that someone else needs to save you from yourself. How does this connect to face masks?

The only thing these “I ain’t gonna wear a face mask” protesters are thinking about is their own freedom. They say, “If God lets me get the COVID then that’s His will”, or, “I’d rather die than have the government force itself into my life!”  You see? Not a thought for their neighbors. You know what, friend? The point is WE DON’T WANT YOU TO GIVE IT TO US! You don’t know if/when you’ll contract COVID, you’re contagious long before you start feeling bad or showing symptoms, and your flagrant disregard is why we’re still in this mess going on six months!

No, the media is not overhyping the virus, despite the far right and their propaganda machine trying to influence you. No, we should not all panic and overreact despite the far left and their similarly useless advice. The only things which matter are the scientific facts: 1) this recent resurgence (since Memorial Day) is not a second wave of the virus because the first wave is still here; 2) reported cases are increasing again in most states BOTH because there’s more testing going on AND because people are not staying masked and staying home; 3) People in the Medieval era flocked to churches during the Black Plague believing God would protect them, which only served to spread the disease faster and extend its duration. God neither wants us to be sick/dead, NOR to take leave of the wisdom with which He gifted us. We have scientific data and we have proof of what happens when countries or states rush back to socializing in theatres, arenas, and churches. It would be the epitome of arrogance (putting God to the test, like the temptation to jump from the temple peak) to reopen theaters, churches and restaurants while COVID-19 cases are increasing in our county, state, and country.

Peace, Joy, and RESPONSIBLE Liberty,

~CRS

Temptation to jump from temple peak: Matthew 5