Stick Your Click It

I came across this article by Walter Williams today on the craptacular federal “Click it or ticket” campaign.  If you want to see me unleash a cloud of profanity, you should be around when one of their asinine commercials comes on.  The city of Dallas has been touting its 90% compliance rate, yet at the same time it’s suffering from a rising crime rate.  Maybe they could put their resources to better use?  And perhaps the federal government could butt out and quit wasting my money for this ($4.2 million according to the Dallas Morning News article).

I’ll be the first to admit that wearing a seat belt is a good idea, but it’s not a matter for the government to decide for us (no matter how altruistic it may be).  Seat belts have saved my behind twice in the past.  But I’d prefer to have been treated as an adult and given the information, rather than forced to wear them at the point of the government’s gun (and I’m not exaggerating here, just ask that woman who was arrested for a seat belt violation).  Anyway, I know the standard argument: people who don’t wear seat belts cost us all money because we have to treat them.  Williams phrases the response to that better than I could.

Some might argue, but falsely so, that the problem with people exercising their liberty to drive without seatbelts, ride motorcycles without helmets or eat in unhealthy ways is that if they become injured or sick, society will be burdened with higher health-care costs. That’s not a problem of liberty but one of socialism. (emphasis added)

There’s no liberty-based argument for forcing one person to care for the needs of another. Under socialism, one is obliged to care for another. A parent-child relationship emerges between the citizen and the government. That was not the vision of our Founders.

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