Saturday, April 19, 2008

Jon Stewart recently said, "My position is: Free societies are not safe -- and that's the price you pay for your freedom. And you can't have it both ways."

Exactly, dead-on correct. We do all that we can to insure our safety, but we draw the line when it comes to infringing on civil liberties and Constitutional guarantees. Once you go beyond such limits and begin to protect in the name of fascist domination then what's the point? All that our founding fathers and colonial brethren fought for is quickly deemed for naught. As Stewart rightly states, freedom comes with a price, one I assume we're all willing to pay.

Having said that, we have Newt Gingrich making quite the different point:
Yesterday, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich visited Drew University in New Jersey, where he took questions from 20 political science majors there. When one asked him how the government could justify stripping rights from Americans in such pieces of legislation as the Patriot Act, Gingrich said that the government has a “right to defend society,” and when under threat, “people will give up all their liberties“:
"If there’s a threat, you have a right to defend society,” Gingrich said. “People will give up all their liberties to avoid that level of threat.“
Gingrich is directly contradicted by Benjamin Franklin, who rejected the notion that one should give up one’s liberties out of fear:
Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.
A supposed conservative contradicting perhaps the wisest and most astute founding father. Yeah, that sounds about right.

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