Monday, January 10, 2011

Double Down

Let me begin this column with a disclaimer: a member of my family has been actively involved in the pharmaceutical industry for more than a quarter century. Given my personal background, I want to address the senseless murders that occurred in Tucson. Jared Loughner is mentally ill, a nut, a loon, crazy, and overwhelmed by bats in his diminished belfry. While the progressive lefties rush to their various podiums and microphones to blame the rhetoric of Tea Partiers, talk radio and anyone else that they choose to demonize, the fault is Loughner’s and the failed social policies of the twisted left.
In harsher times people who were diagnosed as potentially dangerous to the community or themselves were institutionalized in order to remove them from the general population. Along comes do-gooder social policy that emphasizes “mainstreaming” people with mental disabilities by means of behavior modification medicines. At some level I agree with that policy because as long as progressive statists control the social discourse, I know that I may be assigned to a re-education camp by some well-meaning federal czar because of the metaphorical incendiary language that I use from time to time. The flaw in the feel good argument for medication rather than incarceration is the assumption that the deranged individual will be diagnosed correctly and will diligently take his medications. Clearly it seems that it is more humane to require a pill or two per day as opposed to a lifetime of semi-vegetation in a cell block.
The fact that Loughner was allowed to roam freely even though many people were aware of his twisted anti-social proclivities is indeed an indictment of liberal social policies. Progressive statists engage in continual legislation that purports to protect society from every imaginable harm yet their misdirected priorities incrementally increase our exposure to danger. They allow the Jared Loughners to move about unfettered. They subject us to a multitude of devastating side effects by their reliance on drugs as a means of control. Progressive statists appear to have a compulsive need to overlook the foibles of those who have demonstrated an unwillingness to conform to social norms, and at the same time, they continue to squeeze and limit the freedoms and opportunities for the rest of us. It’s as if they believe the circus should be solely populated by the freaks and clowns.
Progressive statists will renew their efforts to limit our ownership of firearms. They will seek to restrict our speech, and they will move to increase regulation on broadcasting and the internet. Meanwhile the crazy loons will continue to float freely as our liberties are assaulted again. As an individualist, a Libertarian, I am suspicious of any effort to broadly define what proper behavior is for the body politic. On the other hand, Natural Law and God’s Law establish parameters of civil interaction that do not require additional tweaking by an overzealous state apparatus. As an individual who cherishes my personal freedom, I resent and abhor any attempt by the state to legislate or regulate in response to the civil outliers. The anomaly, the aberrant and the deranged should not represent the standard for constructing our social and legal contract. The event in Tucson was a horrifying one, but it cannot be used as an impetus for further erosion of our liberties.  
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