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Maricopa County Libertarian Party

Do You Support Freedom? Are You Sure?

June 6, 2009 - 12:09pm
Nick Coons by Nick Coons


If I asked, "who is in support of freedom?", I would imagine that most people would raise their hands. If I followed up that question with "who is in favor of legalizing meth?", I would further imagine that a lot of those same people who just told me they supported freedom would then put their hands down. This should immediately cause a conflict in the minds of those people.

I'm not going to get into the details of why we should end the drug war, including full legalization of hard drugs.  That's beyond the scope of this discussion, and attorney Marc Victor already makes an excellent case for it.  What I find interesting is what people believe "freedom" is.  Many people who say they "support freedom" actually mean that they "support freedom as long as it is the type of freedom they're comfortable with."  But as Maricopa County Libertarian Party chairman Jim Iannuzo so aptly puts it, "Freedom is not a buffet."

If you support freedom, you can't pick and choose the freedoms that other people will exercise.  "Freedom" means that anyone can choose their own values and pursue their own goals in life, so long as they don't infringe on the rights of anyone else to do the same (that is, there is no "freedom to steal" or "freedom to kill" as that's a violation of the rights of others).

And this is how Libertarians differ from others, such as Republicans and Democrats.  We don't support, for instance, the use of hard drugs as that is destructive to one's life.  But we do support the idea that the choice of how to live one's life belongs to the individual, even if we may disagree with their choices, with the caveat that everyone must accept the consequences of their actions.

Related Content:

Changing the World - Nick Coons
Risks and Opportunities - Richard Sutton
Fortunately, We Don't Get All the Government We Pay For - Richard Sutton

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