THE NEW MORALITY – LIBERTY’S LATEST WAR
Posted by Andrew Roman on October 17, 2009
Today’s leftists – and some on the right – have decided that health is now a moral issue. It has become a religion, a value as important and ethically significant as any other Americans hold sacred. This morality is manifesting itself through marginally coherent (and agenda-driven) feel-good science. It is a result of the propensity of today’s liberal to create policy out of emotion.
We see this, for example, in the ongoing evangelism that characterizes the man-made global warming movement. Despite the fact that there is not an iota of scientific data to back up the contentions of a world headed for disaster due to human activity, it is an ongoing hysteria that continues to be sold as absolute truth.
We see it in the ongoing debate that has consumed the bulk of the American dialogue in recent months – health care reform. Despite the fact that the United States has the best health care delivery system on the planet – the envy of the world – and the fact that only a relatively small percentage of Americans are uninsured, the word “Holocaust” is used to describe the “crisis.”
Clearly more critical to the well-being of humanity than the ongoing war against Islamo-fascism is the real battle facing freedom loving people everywhere, the next true peril. While the word “victory” has been vanquished by leftists from any discussion relating to the war in Afghanistan, the emergence of a nuclear Iran, and against evil in general, it has been expropriated for the Left’s fight to preserve this new value system.
It is, in a sentence, a struggle for the good of us all.
The enemy is (and actually has been for some time) tobacco … and to these new moral crusaders, it is the very existence of liberty itself that enables this diabolical adversary to continue to kill innocents. That’s why in almost every sector of life, actions are being taken to eradicate this evil with the same kind of vigor that used to be reserved for totalitarians and murderous dictators. That’s why government must involve itself. This is war. From bans in privately owned restaurants and bars, to making it illegal to smoke in one’s own car, the assault on cigarettes makes the Normandy invasion look almost pedestrian.
The University of Montana, for instance, is the latest institution of higher learning in the United States to break out its can of regulatory RAID and help stop the freedom bug in its tracks by pushing toward a “tobacco-free” campus – something they hope to accomplish by 2011.
Carmen George of the Montana Kaimin writes:
Julee Stearns, UM health promotion specialist and chair of the UM Tobacco Task Force that drafted the plan, said that as of Oct. 2, there are at least 322 smoke-free campuses and 172 tobacco-free campuses nationwide. Montana Tech will also be completely tobacco-free in July 2010. The tobacco-free plan, drafted at the request of UM President George Dennison, aims to ensure the campus environment is healthy and accessible for everyone, Stearns said.
Yes, you read that correctly; there is a UM Tobacco Task Force.
(I’m guessing there must also a UM Separation of Church and State Task Force, among others).
In Pennsylvania last summer, one day after a statewide ban on smoking took place in workspaces and public areas, the Keystone State became the first in the nation to create completely smoke-free campuses at its fourteen state universities. Following the state’s lead, Chancellor John Cavanaugh decided to do what he could to save the children. As Martha Raffaele of the Associated Press wrote:
After discussions with university presidents and system board members, Chancellor John Cavanaugh said he interprets the law to extend beyond buildings at educational facilities to include all campus grounds, such as courtyards, parking lots and athletic fields. Cavanaugh, who took over as chancellor in July, said some classes occasionally meet outside, and the schools also hold outdoor fundraising events and receptions. “After all of that deliberation, we decided we would go on the side of caution,” he said.
I love it when liberals come down on the “side of caution.” (I’m willing to wager a vital body appendage that Mr. Cavanaugh is on the left).
I wonder if that “side of caution” is in play when these open-minded, clear-thinking educators discuss the viability of a human life in the womb. (Perhaps that one flies above their collective pay grades). Either way, these health-as-the-new-morality crusaders – let’s call them “Mommy” for this discussion – have decided that smoking should not only be expelled from public view but must be abolished from every nook and cranny of life – including vehicles and secluded getaway spots.
It’s another small step toward Utopia.
It is reminiscent (and emblematic) of what Councilman Dave Warden of Belmont, California said three years ago when that community was looking to implement the most comprehensive smoking ban in the nation. He summed it all up for the members of the council when he asked, “What if every city did this, imagine how many lives would be saved?”
That’s the kind of vision that communes and sit-ins are made of – not to mention totalitarian societies. It is also another example of the unadulterated arrogance of today’s leftist. They have taken it upon themselves to regulate and legislate our lives so that, presumably, we will never ever die. This is all okay, of course, because smoking is a filthy, disgusting habit that kills trillions anf trillions of people each year. The fact that “Mommy” cares enough to imperil your personal freedoms should speak to the moral imperative.
It’s ironic (don’t you think?) that these anti-tobacco warriors are the very same people who angrily pumped their fists in outrage over provisions of the Patriot Act, claiming they were a direct threat to personal liberties, all the while justifying the government’s right to annex a person’s freedom to engage in a completely legal activity under the phony guise of saving lives – even though there is not a single human being who has ever been documented to have died from second hand smoke.
Today’s purveyors of the new morality know better than you, and they’ll tell you so.
And this isn’t just relegated to the United States.
In a piece published Monday on the UK Telegraph Online website, columnist Ed West wrote about a particularly fanatical anti-smoking commentary he had come across – a piece he called “the most sinister article I’ve read in a long time.”
Duncan Bannatyne of Dragons’ Den has written an article that sent a shiver down my spine. Entitled “I’ll only be happy if smoking is banned”, it proposed measures so dismissive of any sane person’s idea of individual liberties that I’m tempted to say that it sounded better in the original German.
First he praises the Government for banning smoking in pubs and supports the latest proposal to put cigarettes in shops out of sight. But then he goes really mad:
“In my view smokers who currently stand outside a pub or restaurant having a fag should have to stand at least several yards away from the front door, to save the 79% of us who don’t smoke from breathing in their smoke when we go in or out. We should curtail the rights of the 21% and increase their responsibilities towards the 79%. In other words, we should stop them killing us and our children.
Studies estimate that about 11,000 people a year die because of passive smoking. This isn’t nanny statism, Big Brother, or wrongful interference in people’s personal freedoms – it’s the right thing to do to protect the health of the vast majority of us who don’t smoke from the declining minority who do.”
Really? Well, wouldn’t you have been better protected if you’d allowed smokers to meet inside smoking pubs rather than forcing them outside, where they kill you and your children?
“Smoking should be banned in cars, and particularly any vehicle with children in it.”
“On a school visit I met a 12-year-boy who wanted to be an athlete who told me that every morning his mother lit up when she was driving to school, even though he’d begged her to stop. He should be able to report her to the police.”
Are you out of your mind?
“It should also be illegal to smoke at home in front of children. I accept that enforcing such a law would be difficult, but it would send a message that such behaviour is unacceptable. And shops should need a licence to sell cigarettes. They need a licence to sell alcohol, which is sometimes addictive and certainly harmful, just like tobacco, so why not? That would make shopkeepers less likely to sell fags to people under age.
Some shopkeepers are genuinely afraid of a ban on tobacco displays. But that is because the tobacco industry have been up to their old tricks. They tried to convince pubs that the smoke-free law would drive them out of business so they would lobby against the law.”
Er, the smoke-free law has driven loads of pubs out of business, you lunatic. I’m all for reducing tobacco use, but it isn’t any of the Government’s damned business whether people smoke in their own homes. What next? Will officials be able to come around and check they’re eating five a day?
Talk show host Dennis Prager makes the point that if second-hand smoke kills as many people as is claimed by these totalitarian-like zealots – (some say as many as 50,000 a year in the United States alone, which would translate to nearly six people an hour dying in this country as a result of coming into contact with second-hand smoke) – then not only should the practice be banned outright everywhere, but those who are smoking need to be arrested and convicted for taking the lives of the innocent.
When Belmont, California finally passed its landmark anti-smoking legislation into law in September, 2007, the ban was an outright prohibition of cigarettes in all areas of the city, except single-family detached homes.
This prompted me to wonder, if second-hand smoke poses that kind of calamitous threat to everyone everywhere, why then are single-family homeowners immune in Belmont? Don’t they matter? Aren’t the potential “innocents” in that single-family home as much at risk as someone who lives three floors above a smoker in an apartment building?
It is all sheer nonsense.
Yet, “mommies” all over the country are getting precisely what they want – control.
Should we expect the ACLU to step up and defend personal liberty? Perhaps a better question is whether or not anyone truly believes that once the evil of smoking is wiped clean from the lives of people everywhere, it will simply end there.
Government infringements on personal choice always begin with “harmless,” “reasonable-sounding” discussions draped in genuine “concern.” It is always for our own good.
The zealotry from the left when it comes to the smoking issue is remarkable. The anti-smoking crowd is among the most – if not the most – intolerant in our society, and they continue to push falsehoods and fabrications to further their agenda. Despite inconclusive evidence, rigged statistics, and studies showing that the catastrophic dangers of second-hand smoke are bogus (note the recent report by the British Medical Journal as one example), these people are more than willing to sacrifice your liberties for you.
It is truly ironic how leftists aim to protect the physical body from selected poisons while scoffing at any suggestion that poisons of the mind and soul (hyper-sexed music videos, profanity-laced pop music, the banishing of God from schools, etc) have any kind of impact on people.
Once the scourge of tobacco is eradicated and people stop dropping like Warner Brothers’ cartoon anvils from second-hand smoke, then we could turn our attentions to more casual fancies – like Islamo-facism.
No, I am not a cigarette smoker.
Yes, there can be no dobut that cigarette smoking is bad for you.
This is about liberty.