I had another enjoyable opportunity to hear U.S. Congressman Rob Woodall speak recently at the Snellville Commerce Club lunch (a group of local business owners – most small businesses). The Congressman suggested our ire ought not be focused on the National Security Administration (NSA) for “spying” on Americans, rather, the U.S. Congress and President that enacted the law making their activities legal. He said the agency reports each year to Congress their activities and findings so our elected representatives knew or ought to have known of their actions. Therefore, the activities are legal, but legality does not necessarily mean wise or prudent. The same is true regarding the Patient Protection and Affordable Care (PPAC) Act or “Obama Care”. It is the law of the land upheld by our highest court. It is legal; however, many would agree that a government take-over of nearly one sixth of our economy is anathema to our nation's free enterprise system.
For the past several years, I have been advancing an argument at the Georgia General Assembly that would prohibit local governments from billing non-tax fees on your personal ad valorem tax returns. Never have I suggested the practice was illegal – the Georgia Supreme Court has now confirmed it is legal; however, I do believe such an assault on one’s private property in the name of efficient government is unjust.
Recent local news reports several school systems, including Gwinnett County Public Schools, are installing cameras on school buses to aid in enforcing traffic laws. In as much as the school systems do not have traffic enforcement jurisdiction, local governments are necessary partners. Again, the legality is not in question; however, this is yet another encroachment by government into our lives at the same time creating a time and money distraction from the core business of school systems to educate our children. Yes, it is legal, but should governmental agencies continue the installation of cameras monitoring our every move?
Perhaps the most egregious to me, local news reports that Gwinnett County Police have unwillingly strapped one hundred citizens to a gurney, placed them in a headlock, and forcefully withdrawn their blood based on a Magistrate’s warrant to aid in securing what is most often a misdemeanor driving under the influence conviction. Yes, it is legal – just un-American.
Most would agree we must have a safe and secure national defense and providing a healthcare safety net for our poor and disabled is without question. Efficient government operations and citizens that pay their bills is required of all in a civil society. We all desire a safe environment to, from and during school for our children, and DUI’s are a serious offense. That said, our nation has grown and prospered in large degree because government has remained relatively limited in our lives. In my view, each of these seemingly well-intentioned government intrusions are rapidly moving our nation over the tipping point where government will dominate our lives and that most certainly is un-American.