Gun Debate, Tax Issues Signs Of Lost Freedom

To The Reader’s Forum:

Regarding Mr. Demler’s letter about freedom: Our founders feared a powerful central government and believed strongly in the sovereignty of states. Thomas Jefferson said that concentrating all cares and powers into one body is what destroys liberty. Preventing that power from migrating to one place by dividing it among a multitude of little “republics” is what promotes freedom, allowing individual communities to do what’s in their own interests. State and local governments generally waste less money because taxpayers have a more direct impact on expenses. Those monies fund the specific interests of the taxpayers, rather than get sent to another state through the Washington middle man (taxation without representation).

Nobody is advocating for complete decimation of all federal taxation, yet abolishing the IRS would not jeopardize the funding of legitimate, limited federal functions (see U.S. Constitution). Adding to Mr. Demler’s short list of handpicked federal expenses would actually reveal plenty of wasteful spending as well as a multitude of unconstitutional programs that were meant to be handled by states and private citizens (see Tenth Amendment). This unconscionable degree of waste, verified by year after year of deficit and a $17 trillion debt, is indefensible, and legitimizes any dissent with federal taxation.

As for guns, the constant use of the term “boogeyman government” (implying it could only happen in our dreams) is naive. History has shown that the natural condition of prosperous nations is to self-destruct through the expansion, centralization, and corruption of government. Freedom, as James Madison said, is usually lost gradually rather than suddenly. The common belief that our 250-year-old nation is exempt from thousands of years of history is arrogant.

When our Constitutional Republic was formed, the founders’ main concern was not liberty itself, but the preservation of that liberty. According to Thomas Jefferson, the right to bear arms is a last resort to protect ourselves against tyranny in government. It’s not about hunting. It’s not about sport. It’s about preserving liberty. This is why citizens have the right to “military style” weapons, just as American rebels had.

I’d ask Mr. Demler why he continuously demonizes tools rather than actions of people. If using a gun to kill someone is the ultimate act of tyranny, what does that say about a man defending his home, a police officer defending his community, or a soldier defending his country? Such hostility toward guns, rather than the deeds of bad people, will always baffle me.

Rick Hammond

Jamestown