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Individual freedom: Tell us what you cannot do

  1. PrettyPanther profile image83
    PrettyPantherposted 4 years ago

    I hear people talk about their individual freedom and how it has been so severely curtailed here in the U.S.  This comes from all political points of view, particularly libertarian and the right, but also from the left.

    I am interested in hearing what individual freedom you personally have not been able to exercise.  I don't mean hypothetically.  Tell us what you, in your own life, have wanted to do but could not do because the government, or some other entity, would not allow it.

    1. gmwilliams profile image83
      gmwilliamsposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      We all have individual liberties.  However, there are laws which we must abide by-this is part of living in a civilized society.   We must work and live with others in a mature and coherent fashion, pure and simple. There are some people among us who strongly believe in doing what THEY want to do without regards to other people at all.

      Anarchy and/or forms of self-government is never going to work at this stage in society because many people are not evolved emotionally, mentally, nor spiritually to live in harmony with others and to live ethically.   At this stage in society, anarchy and/or self-government is only going to lead to disorder, mayhem, increased lawlessness, and chaos.    We need laws to contain the majority of people into civilized behavior.

      1. wilderness profile image96
        wildernessposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        True, but how many incarcerated people are there for "victimless" crimes?

        Marijuana, or prostitution, for example?  Crimes only in the sense that the real criminals, writing and voting for the laws, don't like to see done by anyone whether they hurt others or not.

        1. Josak profile image60
          Josakposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          Indeed and in that case I agree with the libertarian, where a crime is victimless there should be no crime.

        2. PrettyPanther profile image83
          PrettyPantherposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          Agree with you about the victimless crimes.

  2. ahorseback profile image46
    ahorsebackposted 4 years ago

    There is nothing in America that one cannot do  within socially acceptable paramiters  !  Being a nation of laws for everything imaginable , almost everything we do is contractual ! Capitalism , with its many downfalls , allows for much freedom !

    1. PrettyPanther profile image83
      PrettyPantherposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      I agree with you.

  3. innersmiff profile image73
    innersmiffposted 4 years ago

    Here are the things that have affected me when I've been to the US, mainly Florida: One cannot board an aircraft without molestation. One cannot use cannabis for medical nor recreational use. One cannot own an animal with the ability to protect one's home.  One cannot book a flight without taxation that might double the price. One cannot pay for any good or service un-inflated by the Fed. One cannot pay for any good or service made more expensive by regulation.

    There is not a single action one can make that is not molested in some way by the government.

    1. PrettyPanther profile image83
      PrettyPantherposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      "One cannot board an aircraft without molestation."  But, aren't you entering into a voluntary contract when you buy a ticket to fly, including agreeing to the price and undergoing security measures?  By the way, I have yet to be be searched before boarding an aircraft.

      "One cannot use cannabis for medical nor recreational use."  This, I agree is a freedom that one cannot exercise in most states.

      "One cannot own an animal with the ability to protect one's home."  You cannot have a guard dog?  I've never heard of that restriction.

      "One cannot book a flight without taxation that might double the price. One cannot pay for any good or service un-inflated by the Fed. One cannot pay for any good or service made more expensive by regulation."  I don't see these as a restriction on your individual freedom since you are not required to purchase goods or services.

      1. innersmiff profile image73
        innersmiffposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        It is not the airlines themselves stipulating in their contract that you have to be searched by the TSA - it is the government violently interfering in that contract. I believe it should be left to the airlines or airports, who will have to secure their aircrafts in a way that pleases their customers, who will then have the ability to choose between them for the best service.

        Pitbulls are illegal dogs in Florida, which creates a black market that exacerbates the problem of vicious dogs, and prevents honest people from owning dogs that they believe will protect their home and children. It's a good option, especially with the inevitable increase in gun control legislation.

        " . . . since you are not required to purchase goods or services."
        Where does one begin with this? Firstly, how can you agree that cannabis prohibition is a violation of individual liberty? One isn't required to buy cannabis. There are even alternatives to cannabis for medicinal uses. This is like saying that banning emigration isn't a violation of individual freedom because you're not required to emigrate. I don't even see your reasoning.

        When you buy a good or service from someone, you are engaging in a voluntary exchange contract with them. When the government comes in and taxes and regulates the transaction, and inflates the price, it is committing violence against those two individuals. The seller can not sell as many products, and the buyer cannot buy as many, thus reducing the productivity of both of them. Of course this is a violation of individual liberty.

        1. PrettyPanther profile image83
          PrettyPantherposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          "It is not the airlines themselves stipulating in their contract that you have to be searched by the TSA - it is the government violently interfering in that contract. I believe it should be left to the airlines or airports, who will have to secure their aircrafts in a way that pleases their customers, who will then have the ability to choose between them for the best service." 

          I, as a citizen, want government oversight over services that are provided to me that I have neither the time nor the knowledge to know are performed safely.  This includes airlines, bridge construction, food preparation, automobile manufacturing, and a host of other products and services.  If you consider that to be violence that is your right, but again, most citizens are happy to know that someone is watching out for their safety, even if it is not perfect.  Government interventions did not occur in a vacuum; they were instituted in response to gross misconduct on the part of private companies who were putting profit above safety.  They were instituted because the citizens demanded them.  Again, you have the freedom NOT to fly or, as someone else pointed out, buy your own plane.   Also, you have the freedom to opt out of the system if you don't like it. 

          "Pitbulls are illegal dogs in Florida, which creates a black market that exacerbates the problem of vicious dogs, and prevents honest people from owning dogs that they believe will protect their home and children. It's a good option, especially with the inevitable increase in gun control legislation." 

          Apparently, the people of Florida wanted this law or at least elected those who voted for it.  If they don't want it, they will repeal it.  In the meantime, other breeds can be used as guard dogs.  I hardly see how your freedom is curtailed from owning a dog that can guard your home.  Sure, you cannot own a particular breed, but if you want a pitbull that badly you can move to a state where they are legal.

          " . . . since you are not required to purchase goods or services."
          Where does one begin with this? Firstly, how can you agree that cannabis prohibition is a violation of individual liberty? One isn't required to buy cannabis. There are even alternatives to cannabis for medicinal uses. This is like saying that banning emigration isn't a violation of individual freedom because you're not required to emigrate. I don't even see your reasoning. "

          I am not an expert on drug laws here in the U.S., but I believe that federal law still prohibits the use of cannabis for medical purposes, even though some states have legalized it.  You're right about an inconsistency in my argument, but that is exactly what government is about, representing the will of the people.  Some people approve of regulating cannabis; others do not.  I view it as an unnecessary regulation, which is why I called it a violation of individual freedom. Someone else mentioned motorcycle laws as a stupid regulation.  Most people want some regulations; we just differ on how much anarchy we want to give up in exchange for some security.

          "When you buy a good or service from someone, you are engaging in a voluntary exchange contract with them.bhen the government comes in and taxes and regulates the transaction, and inflates the price, it is committing violence against those two individuals. The seller can not sell as many products, and the buyer cannot buy as many, thus reducing the productivity of both of them. Of course this is a violation of individual liberty." 

          Again, I do not see this as a violation of my individual liberty; I see it as an agreement between the citizens and their government.  Granted, as I said above, there will always be disagreement on what needs to be taxed and regulated and how much, but most of us who live under a government are happy to do so.

          1. innersmiff profile image73
            innersmiffposted 4 years ago in reply to this

            The fact that you or the majority of citizens want something does not grant you the right to impose that upon others. 'Choosing' not to fly, buying my own plane or moving to a different country is not an acceptable compromise. If the owners of the airline don't want excessive security measures, and the customers don't want excessive security measures, what right does the government have to interfere with this arrangement? It violates my right to engage in a voluntary contract, which is by definition, regardless if you think it is or not, a violation of individual liberty. The people, and certain special interests, may have wanted it, but it doesn't change definitions. You cannot change reality through democracy.

            The principle is the same in the case of 'dangerous' dog laws and prohibition. I want to be able to own a dog to protect my own property. This act does not violate anybody's rights. But, apparently, Florida has a problem with that. They want to prohibit an action that will not affect anybody accept those who attempt to trespass on my property. This is a violation of individual liberty - you don't believe it is. But somehow, the prohibition of cannabis is a violation of individual liberty. What's the difference? Again, it's an action that will affect nothing except myself, violating nobody's rights, yet there are others who wish to stop me from doing it. Do individual rights change when it comes to the type of property you wish to own? Of course not. Only when you believe the law to be 'unnecessary' do you believe it to be a violation of individual rights. Which basically means you like to use 'individual rights' when it suits you because it sounds nice, when you actually don't care about them. You justify dangerous dog laws by saying that majority wishes it so. So what? It is a violation. Government is sacrificing individual rights for a little security, right? Why pretend otherwise?

            "Most of us believe" was never an acceptable argument for anything.

            1. Josak profile image60
              Josakposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              On the contrary the rights of the majority to safety when they fly, or when their children play in a park supersedes the rights of the minority to not be subject to a search or to own dangerous dogs.
              It is the ultimate in pure selfishness to place the inconvenience of the minority before the safety of the majority and it is simply not a just way to run a nation.

              "The people" as a whole have the right to choose the conditions that affect all of them not "a person".

              I am all for allowing all liberties so long as they do not endanger and negatively affect others, both those things do that.

              1. innersmiff profile image73
                innersmiffposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                Given the incredible backlash towards the TSA and their almost abusive practices, it is likely that airlines would, responding to the demands of their customers, find a way to create a more balanced security system that respects the passengers yet is comprehensive enough to keep them safe. Those airlines that do not meet those demands would be shunned. In our current scenario, the customer does not have this power, but is subject to an entity that is not responsive to them. Although some have, in response to the outrages of the TSA, it is quite another story to shun flying altogether.

                Similarly, parks can and do have rules that limit what kinds of dogs are allowed, and this is fine. Legislation that governs what an individual can do on their own private property, on the other hand, is a violation of individual liberty. One cannot deny that the simple act of owning a pitbull is not a violation of anybody's rights, and does not directly endanger anyone.

                1. Josak profile image60
                  Josakposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  That is because flight security does not only affect the customers of airlines, it affects those whom those planes may be flown into and those on the ground that may be affected by a crash, besides I would never feel comfortable trusting my security to a company which is trying to make customers feel welcome and comfortable, I have no doubt that should flight companies be allowed to run their own security all one would have to do to hitchhike or bomb a plane is fly first class and one would not be searched so as to encourage repeat flying and thus endangering everyone else on the plane, I believe most people realize this which is why most people favor proper searches as they are conducted and this thread would seem to back that belief.

                  The fact of the matter is dogs escape etc. which makes it unsafe to have them in the area at all.

                  1. innersmiff profile image73
                    innersmiffposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    Think about how epically disastrous it would be for any airline if it was responsible for a terrorist attack. Reflecting on this, wouldn't it be in the airline's interest to ensure that their security is ultra-tight? There is a balance an airline can make that is completely lost on the TSA. "most people realize this" is ad-populum, again.

            2. wilderness profile image96
              wildernessposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              That you wish to carry a bomb onto the airplane flying over my house, in "my" airspace, is unacceptable. 

              Either go through airport security and prove you don't have one or don't fly.

              1. innersmiff profile image73
                innersmiffposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                That you've resorted to such an assertion reveals your unwillingness to engage in civil debate. Thanks for your time.

                1. PrettyPanther profile image83
                  PrettyPantherposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  Actually, he was projecting an honest fear:  that doing away with airport security so that you can have your "liberty" could result in his or someone else's death. 

                  This is the real world.

                  1. Josak profile image60
                    Josakposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    +1

                  2. innersmiff profile image73
                    innersmiffposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    It's the same as arguing that arguing for the right to due process means you just want to be a criminal and get away with it. Grade school debate tactics.

            3. PrettyPanther profile image83
              PrettyPantherposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              I live in the real world.  I already admitted that my positions about individual liberty are based upon my own desires for security versus freedom.  That is the case for everyone, whether they will admit it or not.  We each have our own view of what is the proper place to draw the line when trading a little individual liberty in exchange for security. 

              You say you are an anarchist, yet you are not willing to live your life that way.  To me, you are an anarchist in theory but not practice, which means you are either cowardly or a hypocrite or both.  I'm not saying those things to insult you, but I'm trying to show you that it is impossible to live 100% by intellectual principle without regard to feelings and especially ignoring the human need for safety and security.

              1. innersmiff profile image73
                innersmiffposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                Right. Let me get this straight: individual liberty means whatever you want it to mean, depending on what you want at the time. And principles are all well and good, except when it's inconvenient.

                I've never heard such a cop-out in my life. You're basically admitting that I'm right but you don't care.

                1. PrettyPanther profile image83
                  PrettyPantherposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  So, are you living your principles?  100%?

                  1. innersmiff profile image73
                    innersmiffposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    You mean, am I living l some hill-billy shack in the wilderness without any government contact at all? Well, if that's what you believe living by libertarian principles means, then no, but I don't buy that at all. Just as I don't buy the argument that socialists who have a job in the capitalist system aren't real socialists and RBE (Resource Based Economy) people aren't legit because they still use currency.

                    As I see government as inherently violent, continuing to pay taxes and receive government services is not agreeing to those things in principle, but conceding to power. Just as you would think being enslaved is wrong, but you won't run away simply because you'll get shot if you do. Does not running away mean you're agreeing with slavery? Obviously not.

                    Ultimately, the number one principle is non-violence. Am I committing violence or lending my voice to violent causes? No. Therefore, I am living by my principles 100%.

                2. Josak profile image60
                  Josakposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  Individual liberty means absolute freedom unless it can negatively affect others, if it can it becomes a matter of choice for the community. It's as simple as that, you don't get to juggle with the lives of others without consulting them.

                  1. innersmiff profile image73
                    innersmiffposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    Individual liberty, to the libertarian, means absolute freedom of self and property, unless it does negatively affect others. We see 'can', as meaning: 'anything under the sun'.

                  2. wilderness profile image96
                    wildernessposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    Unfortunately true.  Any time 2 or more people live in close proximity to each other (which today might mean within 1000 miles) there will be freedom lost.  Or lives - take your choice.

    2. wilderness profile image96
      wildernessposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      Of course you can board a plane without molestation.  Buy your own, rather than contracting to use someone else's if that's what you want.

      You may certainly own an animal, although some (big cats, for instance) are restricted in order that those that don't care won't destroy the species.  One is also responsible for controlling that animal and preventing damage to innocent people - is that a problem?

      Never had a plan ticket with as much tax as the ticket, and doubt that you have, either.  Would you rather have the cost for the airport, traffic controllers, etc. built into the general tax rate so that others can share in the cost of your trip?

      Yes, the Fed will always collect their pound of flesh from every purchase you make.  How else can the maintain the welfare payments?  And of course, we could do away with the ADA, EEOC, OSHA and other regulations that increase the cost, but I somehow doubt you would approve of that.

      1. innersmiff profile image73
        innersmiffposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        Why is the government claiming a monopoly over the security on these airlines? What if one of them decides that they don't want to molest me? The government is then interfering in a voluntary contract by force.

        The problem with animal laws is down to the tragedy of the commons. In short, countries that allow ownership of endangered species often find increasing numbers because the owners have a vested interest in their property, and take steps to protect it. I don't have any problem with laws against property damage and not taking steps to make sure they're not attacking innocent people because those actions are violations of liberty of others

        I live in the UK and I promise you every trip I make the actual cost of the ticket is about the same as the tax that is added on to it. I would rather have no tax at all.

        I'm an anarcho-capitalist! Of course, I would do away with the Fed, and all of those regulations. tongue

        1. John Holden profile image60
          John Holdenposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          I take it you're counting shareholders dividends and company  profits as tax then?
          Public transport in the UK by and large, though privately owned, is heavily subsidised by the tax payer.

        2. wilderness profile image96
          wildernessposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          The govt. probably claims authority over airport security because it has far more information available to it (homeland security in the US) and has the resources to do the job.  Smaller airports would likely do without, an unacceptable solution.

          Some owners of exotic animals take care of them, many do not.  And of those that do, all too many do a poor job of it.

          Interesting about the tax - I don't fly much, but doubt that more than 10-15% of the total is tax.

          1. innersmiff profile image73
            innersmiffposted 4 years ago in reply to this

            The financial sector, and other volatile markets that need security, do perfectly fine without comprehensive knowledge of terrorist activity, and work it out with the customers and others who enter their buildings, and use their transport.

            The statistics suggest otherwise: states that allow private ownership of nature reserves find that upkeep and species count are much better than government-owned reserves. You're supposed to be capitalist aren't you? Do the laws of economics change when it comes to animals?

            1. wilderness profile image96
              wildernessposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              Not too many of those other markets have had their property hijacked and flown into buildings.  That makes the security applicable to only that company and it's employees (who may choose to work elsewhere); not to the general population.  The population that had nothing to do with the airlines whose property took their lives.

              I believe that you may own a private nature reserve.  You will, of course, be inspected by govt. to be sure the endangered species are not being further endangered (or sold illegally) on your preserve.  I have no problem with that; all too many species have vanished as a direct result of man's greed for a few dollars.

      2. John Holden profile image60
        John Holdenposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        Shock horror!

        +1

        Gasp.

        1. wilderness profile image96
          wildernessposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          lol
          Easy, there, John.  You'll be needing virtual CPR next thing.

  4. rebekahELLE profile image88
    rebekahELLEposted 4 years ago

      Where is your reference for this?  They are not illegal in the area I live.  The only county I know of, and it has possibly changed or been restricted, is Miami-Dade.  Pitbulls are not the only dog which can be used as a guard dog. 

    I've never been touched at the airport going through security.

 
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