Freedom, a word that has completely different meanings to different people

Brandon Lindstrom

Brandon Lindstrom

Freedom. Such a simple word, yet one that has had such a resounding impact on the world. Wars have been fought over that word, and many men and women have died in the name of freedom. A simple word, yet near impossible to define.

How would you define freedom? Does it mean doing whatever you please without anyone stopping you? Does it mean being free to choose your own destiny for yourself? Being able to decide the fate of your pregnancy? Protecting an unborn child’s chance for a free life of its own? Perhaps having the freedom to make something of yourself by starting a small business free from mounds of paperwork and government interference?

Whatever your definition of freedom, a small government-as opposed to our newly elected administration and Congress-is a government that will maximize your freedoms. Sure the power shift in our country offers extended abortion freedoms, gay marriage freedoms, possibly some legalized drug freedoms ? but say those of you who champion those issues get your way, then what? Aside from freedom in social issues, there is very little promise of additional freedoms ? only more regulations, stipulations, lack of choice in medical care, reduced gun rights/self protection rights, more loopholes for lawyers to take advantage of and create more of the asinine lawsuits we hear about all the time, more tax burdens reducing personal economic freedom, etc.

Our new administration promises to better all our lives and improve the human condition for all of us. Sounds great, but there are few actions of government that can pull us out of all our individual problems ? only you can do that, and you should be free to do so! Government exists to protect us from each other and to help those who cannot help themselves. An increase in the ability of government to do things for you (through increased taxes, regulations) equals a decrease in your ability to do things for yourself and choose your own path (less freedom for you).

With a small and open government, it’s easier to trust government to do the right thing with the power they have, while at the same time maximizing our freedoms in most other aspects of our lives. Big government fears the people, because the more you tell people what to do, the more disgruntled individuals there will be. Small government is more responsible to you and me, because maximizing our individual freedoms with a small government leaves us free to keep watch over the government and call them out when they do not carry out properly or ethically the few responsibilities that we have entrusted to them.

There’s a famous quote: “The government big enough to give you everything you want is powerful enough to take everything you have.” Keep that in mind, otherwise you may find yourself sacrificing your personal freedoms to a government that may or may not provide you with an acceptable equivalent.

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