Andrew Napolitano is a former New Jersey Superior Court judge who has authored nine books on legal and political topics, is a syndicated columnist with Creators Syndicate, Inc., and senior judicial analyst for the Fox News Channel. A recent column titled “I have a great many questions, but what are the answers?” gives us a lot to consider.
Here are some questions to think about:
* What if the government has it wrong — on the medicine and the law?
* What if face masks can't stop the COVID-19 virus?
* What if quarantining the healthy makes no medical sense, and if staying at home for months reduces immunity?
* What if more people have been infected with the virus in their homes than outside them?
* What if the government wants to stoke fear in the populace because mass fear produces mass compliance?
* What if individual fear reduces individual immunity, and if a “healthy immunity” gets stronger when challenged, and a “pampered immunity” gets weaker when challenged?
* What if we all pass germs and viruses — that we don't even know we have — on to others all the time, but their immune systems repel what we pass on to them?
* What if we never elected a government to keep us free from all viruses, but we did elect it to keep us free from all tyrants?
* What if the government — which can't deliver the mail, fill potholes, stop robocalls, or spend within its income — is the last entity on earth into whose hands we would voluntarily repose our health for safekeeping?
Have we not all seen at least a few actions by government officials and police that cause us to question what is really happening?
Here are a few examples of over-the-top state and local government actions:
* Michigan took away the business license of a 77-year-old barber who, after two months of being shut down, opened his business so he could feed his family. In addition, the state may possibly fine him $1,000 a day and jail him.
* A woman at a New York City subway station was roughly subdued by several police officers, handcuffed in front of her toddler, and hauled away to jail. What was her crime? Robbery? Assault? Insulting Mayor De Blasio or Governor Cuomo? Not wearing a mask in public? “No,” to all of those. She was wearing a mask, just not wearing it “properly,” according to New York’s Finest.
* A woman in Miami was sitting alone on a deserted beach when police officers approached and arrested her. Her crime? Sitting on a beach holding a sign that read, “We Are Free.”
* Businesses in some states and cities — Pennsylvania; Fresno, California; Castle Rock, Colorado, to name just three — have had their business licenses revoked, and/or fines imposed, and sometimes patrons jailed for opening against their rulers’ commands.
* A high school student in Marquette County, Wisconsin who had a scare with COVID-19 posted about her experience on Instagram, and a few days later, a deputy sheriff showed up at her home and demanded that she remove her post or be cited for disorderly conduct, arrested, and jailed.
God Bless America, the land of the free!
More of Napolitano’s questions:
* What if the government gave itself the power to interfere with our personal choices?
* What if that self-imposed power violates the basic constitutional principle that the government derives its powers from the consent of the governed?
Once again, that adage offered by former President Barack Obama’s wingman, Rahm Emanuel, who took it from the Saul Alinski playbook, comes to our attention: “Never let a good crisis go to waste.”
A crisis presents an opportunity; a chance to get something done. It may be something good, or it may be something bad. During this pandemic it has been used as an opportunity to assert control over people, an opportunity gladly utilized by far too many governors and mayors.
Some of the restrictions imposed may have been done with the best of intentions, but with far less than the best of common sense. Broad one-size-fits-all restrictions imposed on the entire nation and some states that have dramatic regional differences, are foolish and harmful.
Like Virginia, for example. What is needed or works best for Richmond, the DC area and Tidewater may be wrong for southwest Virginia. And as demonstrated by the governors of Florida and Georgia, not all states need the same treatment as New York, California and New Jersey.
Other restrictions seem to have been done with a political goal in mind. “Do as I say, because I said so,” is the dominant attitude, and some guidelines are backed up by arrests, fines and jail time. These authoritarian officials arrogantly thumb their nose at their constituents and trample on the individual freedom principles upon which the United States of America was established.
People are tiring of being controlled when the controls are worse than that which spawned them. They are ready to go back to work, to enjoy life, even if that means continuing some of the guidelines imposed on them weeks ago, but now doing it voluntarily.