Dan Popp
Civics for snowflakes
By Dan Popp
November 12, 2016

In questions of power, then, let no more be heard of confidence in man, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution. – Thomas Jefferson

Oh, Social Justice Warriors! Basement-dwelling Women's Studies PhDs! Tolerant, progressive defenders of the planet – what shall we do?!? Donald Trump has actually been elected!

No doubt he will shoot all the polar bears using our outlawed birth control pills as ammunition! Education will be forbidden! Republican gangs will roam the streets grabbing our genitals!

If only there were some mechanism for protecting us from him! If only – I'm dreaming here, I know – but if there were some kind of really powerful law to protect us from the President! And from Congress!! And from the Courts, now that – oh, we are undone!!!

Miraculously, the protection I'm describing does exist, or it did until you barbarians got ahold of it. That National Restraining Order on the government that suddenly seems so vital is the Constitution that you shredded.

Nice work, snowflakes.

This is a teachable moment, but will you learn? I have my doubts. To say it in language you can relate to, the US Constitution was designed to keep you from FEELING the way you're feeling now: afraid of your government.

But it works both ways, of course. An actual Constitution, instead of the fictional "living" one you put in its place over the last half-century, would have protected the Little Sisters of the Poor from President Obama's overreaches, too. But you didn't want a Constitution then. You wanted to do the "good" you wanted to do, regardless of the law. But the law is the good that protects all of us. So to get the "positive good" of freebies and invented "rights," you destroyed the "negative good" of laws to restrain the government.

Unfortunately for you, we do not live in the world you imagine: a world in which the massive use of force (that's what government is) can be trusted to do "good" – even your unfounded conception of "good." The powerful will do what the powerful will. You took away most of the checks on the Obamas and Trumps of the land when you wiped your backside with our National Restraining Order.

If you don't want to be afraid of your government, you have to come over to the Light. You have to join the group that wants to make government much smaller and much less powerful – which means giving up your dreams of a government that can heal all boo-boos and redistribute happiness.

In the 1830s Alexis de Tocqueville noted that the average citizen of the United States didn't have much dealing with the national government. He wasn't dependent on it, and he wasn't harassed by it. This is the alternative that you, Mr. or Mz. Barbarian, have not been willing to entertain, until now. We can have that again. A life pretty much free of government interference, unless we commit a crime. A nation where presidential elections are largely ignored because one man or woman in Washington can't change our lives in any significant way.

Will you give up your childish fantasy of a President who can control the level of the oceans, in order to gain the real security of a President who can't do much, either to help or to harm you?

The Constitution is your – is our – true safe space. To enter it, all you have to do is grow up.

© Dan Popp


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