I'm creeped out...
I'm a gun-toting, beer drinking, occasionally a cigarette smoking, American vehicle driving, farm-raised... well, redneck. I'm not entirely right-wing. I'm not entirely left wing. I'm surrounded by two groups of people in my life: Psychotic fanatical right-wing Conservatives, and psychotic fanatical left-wing Liberals. It's hard for me to discuss my feelings on all matters religious or political because I simply don't fit in with any of my friends.
My fanatical right-wing brother has been blathering for years on government regulation. He hates seatbelt laws. But I always figured they were for my own good. So, no harm there.
My brother hates smoking bans. But, I always figured there might be someone with asthma somewhere in the county. So, no harm there.
Workplace safety regulations have been giving my brother migraines for some time now. But, there are some pretty stupid people out there who actually need to be told that gasoline is not safe for human consumption. So, no harm there.
I could list things that drive my dear eldest brother insane for pages. I've heard out all of his points and arguments. I've sat patiently while he's gone on tirades. Occasionally, my eyes have glazed over and I turned into one of those people who mutter "Uh-huh" at appropriate intervals. It's called active listening and I learned about it in college. (As opposed to learning about it in university, because as of yet, I've learned nothing in university except how to survive on twelve dollars for two weeks. Ah, higher education.)
But lately I've been paying a little more attention. Perhaps it was when inspectors came on to a neighbors farm and killed hundreds of his birds because he wasn't properly regulated. They were just looking out for public safety, doncha know?
Perhaps it was when a local church supper was closed down and the egg salad sandwiches were confiscated because they weren't prepared in an inspected kitchen.
Perhaps I listened a little more closely to my brother when smoking was disallowed at the local Barf'n'Gag, as we lovingly call it. I've yet to see a non smoking patron in the restaurant. I've yet to see a non smoking waitress in the restaurant. I'm really wondering: Why is our government, the infamous they, allowed to decide what happens on privately owned property?
Should government inspectors really be allowed to come onto my farm and inspect my milkhouse at any time they want? Should these same officials really be allowed to come into a privately owned house and decide what is best for the children living within it? Should the fire marshall really be allowed to come into my home and fine me if I don't have a smoke detector on every floor, and one in front of every bedroom door? Should public health officials really be allowed to storm church suppers and confiscate egg salad sandwiches?
I really wonder if it's the good of the public they have in mind here. I like being safe. But if I want to have a cigarette in a privately owned restaurant; if I want to put up a sheet of drywall in my house; if I want to draw water from the riverfront property that I own to water my crops: is that really anyone else's business?
When does regulation become tyranny?
I'm not a psychotic fanatical right-wing Conservative. I'm not a psychotic fanatical left-wing Liberal. I'm just me, bumbling my way through life. It's getting kind of complicated, and it kinda freaks me out.
We're losing freedoms, here people.
I'm just wondering.