Freedom Really Free?
Is freedom really free? Last year during the election I was
in the Intensive Care after I got hit by a car. My mom and
the nurses and the doctors all were watching the election
returns. Everyone who came in to look after me asked me about
the election. Most of them voted for Al Gore. After I was
discharged and went home, I was bedridden for a very long
time, and all the news reports were about the recounts and
the Supreme Court ruling.
For a year now, I have listened to my mother and others discuss
their political beliefs and my beliefs are similar. Freedom
is more than politics, yet politics puts a heavy burden on
What is freedom anyway? The most basic freedom is free thought.
No one can own what I am thinking? Yet, can they? We can be
brainwashed with propaganda. Is our media really reporting
the truth? Or are they reporting what they are told to report?
I am under the impression that nothing is free. Men die in
wars. Mothers lose their sons. Children lose their dads. My
uncle has shrapnel in his body and a steel plate in his head
from Viet Nam. He suffers everyday. He certainly is not free.
I'm just a kid, but I pay taxes on stuff I buy in the stores,
so I support something within our government with each purchase.
So whatever service or freedom is involved it is not free.
I know since the World Trade Center tragedies, we are on
heightened alert, and I guess there are no easy answers to
preserve our way of life, but this is what Benjamin Franklin
said way back in 1759:
"They that give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary
safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."
The current administration and Attorney General Ashcroft
are changing laws to change the way we live and the freedom
to go on with our daily living is no longer the same. I just
moved from Florida, and Governor Jeb Bush has the whole state
under Martial Law - so if the police stop you your rights
are not the same as before. Even the ACLU's web site has information
on knowing your rights.
President John F. Kennedy said in a speech once: "We are
not afraid to entrust the American people with unpleasant
facts, foreign ideas, alien philosophies, and competitive
values. For a nation that is afraid to let its people judge
the truth and falsehood in an open market is a nation that
is afraid of its people."
It seems to me, that whatever freedoms we may have are not
free, but are prime to be taken away from us. A better question
is how do we preserve our freedom? I'm not sure I know how
to answer that. Maybe we need look back in our own history
books and learn from Jefferson, Franklin, Kennedy, Roosevelt,
and Churchill, too and from them we can learn to be brave
and stand up for ourselves in our own nation.