DANGERS TO HUMAN LIBERTY
July 2, 1897
Significance of the [4th of July] Lost
In my judgment, the celebration of the Fourth of July has lost its true significance. At first and principally it was the celebration of a declaration of freedom, of the natural, inborn and inherent right of humanity to certain inalienable, indestructible and imprescriptible rights. The very center and heart of this declaration is this statement: “We hold these truths to be self-evident–that all men are born free and equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights.”
Inalienable rights given by the Creator–or nature–are natural rights which cannot be rightfully taken away, for what has clearly been given by the Creator to all the children of men no power on this earth ever yet had or ever will have just warrant to take away, except as punishment for crime, and for this sin of deprival the curse of God, as seen and expressed in the laws of nature, has ever and will ever follow. This, without evasion or exception, is the sole and the one sufficient cause of the downfall of all nations.
Some day public utilities will be owned and controlled solely by the public, but inalienable, natural rights, placed by the God of nature within the keeping of the individual, will be unreservedly in the control of the individual himself alone whenever he wishes to exercise them. Now, because denied these rights, men are forced by their necessities to enter the service of a master, and the fear of coming want, like a whip of scorpions, lashes to their tasks men and women for whom Christ died.
The right to life is, in truth, a right to a living–that is, an opportunity to obtain a living without hindrance or tribute imposed by one’s fellows. The earth in a state of nature is the answer of God to the need of man, and in a state of nature man has an unquestioned right to apply his labor to unoccupied land. This comes near solving the problem, for if men were in possession of this natural right they could labor for others or refuse to do so. Freedom of choice would be restored. Now men are under restraint and have no free choice by reason of the withdrawal of natural right. Being deprived of natural right and under restraint by reason of that deprival, the laborer cannot be free.
The first and greatest desire of the rightly constituted mind is to be free.
With liberty all things become possible to man. Without it retrogression sets in, and advance becomes impossible. –By Gov. J. R. Rogers of Washington
The Milwaukee Journal
Click here to read the full article.