Open letter to Republicans

Open letter to Republicans

As President Obama continues to invent new ways to subvert the US Constitution and destroy Capitalism, the NC General Assembly appears to be marching in step-for-step time. 2009 will be a year to which generations of freedom-loving people shall point. A year in which we will see more clearly than ever before, the subversion of everything the Founders created, a bastardization of everything that has made America the greatest nation the world has ever known.

A perfect example is the proposed smoking ban in North Carolina. Many justify the ban based on the will of the majority, public health, or the general welfare. In reality, the sole issue is individual rights.

William Pitt stated, “Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom.” There can be no question that necessity has been suggested for the passage of this law. A Republican member recently was quoted as saying “When a clear majority of North Carolina residents and lawmakers agree with scientific studies that secondhand smoking harms health, the Legislature is obliged to outlaw smoking in the workplace.”

To this, I say Bull.

While the necessity of public pressure may be very real for elected officials, and the necessity of general welfare may be an argument for some; the recognition of individual rights is paramount, and there is no excuse in a Republican not standing first for the individual and the property which he owns.

Former Supreme Court Justice Louis Bradeis once said, “The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well-meaning but without understanding.”  Now is the time to fully understand the issue: property rights, and the solution: the market-place.

As a business owner, I have the inalienable right to own and make decisions regarding my property. To succeed, I also must react to the market place. For my business, that means that I do not allow smoking within my building; many customers will not continue to do business with me if they have to put up with the stench and risks of second-hand smoke; it is also likely that employees would leave if I allowed smoking. But this is a decision that I have made, based upon my assessment of my marketplace. It is not a decision that anyone has the authority to dictate to me. Consequently, if I chose to allow smoking, it would be up to my clients to do business with me or to not, to my employees to work or to not.

For the short-sighted, the argument appears to be the cost to the state for diseases caused by smokers. If that is the case, logic would dictate that property owners should be rewarded for allowing smoking. Because they allow it, they are saving the government millions of dollars in Medicaid, Medicare and Social Security money due to early deaths caused by smoking. The utter lack of logic in the argument of cost does not suit a Republican philosophy- nor does it suit an American philosophy.

For some more thoughtful individuals, the argument is that smoking and second-hand smoke is a public health hazard. In reality, the stated purpose of the bill is to “protect the health of individuals in public places and places of employment and riding in State government vehicles.” Apparently, the state has no concern of your health under any other circumstances. If in fact the purpose is to protect the public health, smoking should be outlawed. For that matter, so should hamburgers, hotdogs, fried food, and driving over 35 miles per hour. Pray tell, what is the difference? Mark my words, if this ban is passed, similar bans will also be passed under the same assumptions. In fact, in 2008 California passed a law banning trans-fats, and LA has placed a moratorium on new fast food restaurants in areas of high obesity.

Thomas Jefferson said, “Do you want to know who you are? Action will delineate and define you.” The Republican Party has, over the past few years, lost its place in the defense of Liberty. In North Carolina, this smoking ban issue is singular in the opportunity for Republicans to unite in defense of the most basic of all American rights, of all human rights. Many elected Republicans clearly do not support individual rights.

Jefferson also said, “All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent.” The foot-soldiers of the conservative movement must not remain silent as the comrades of socialism slaughter the Liberties of our fathers on the alter of the general welfare.

Jefferson continues: “Timid men prefer the calm of despotism to the tempestuous sea of liberty.” If an elected Republican is so timid as to not stand for the basic Liberty he was elected to defend, he is not worthy. Liberty is indeed a tempestuous sea.

The record of the vote is below. If you agree that our Liberty is threatened by this bill, I hope that you will consider a letter of frustration to the Republicans that voted to pass this bill in the NC House; and an encouragement to the Republicans in the NC Senate who will now consider it. Member emails are online at

Finally, I offer a personal thank you to Representative Moore for a vote against- and Senator Clary for a clear understanding of the issue when it comes before the Senate.

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