Remember the Seinfeld episode when a particular soup seller was pretty strict about the rules in his soup shop? If you wanted his soup and you didn’t follow the rules, it was “No soup for you!”
That’s well and fine with me, because the soup guy owned the establishment and it was his right to make the customer rules. Now, let’s look at our government overlords and all the rules they wish to impose on we the people…
One new desire among many, is the proposed ban on chocolate milk in NYC public schools. This one is reminiscent of the NYC Mayor Bloomberg decree… “No saltshakers on restaurant tables” and a ban on large sodas!
NYC is not the only place in America where pronouncements are being made to whittle away at individual choice. Recently in California there was a pronouncement to forbid plastic water bottles at airports. Plastic bottles that contain juices and some other chosen beverages are allowed, for now…the reasoning for this exception is unknown.
More whittling of choice has also come down from the federal level. Flavored vaping cartridges have been deemed unacceptable…yet others containing THC are acceptable.
This whittling of our individual rights is common in other areas too. Incidentally, does anyone under the age of 30 even know what whittle means? Many in past generations learned to whittle with pocketknives in Scouts. Knife safety was taught, and we whittled sticks and carved soap figures. Just wondering if anything pocketknife related is allowed these days. I suspect that activity has been whittled away.
Bicycle helmets must be worn…no more letting the wind blow through your hair while riding your bike. Yes, I realize safety is important, and helmets have most likely prevented many injuries…but why not leave it up to the individual to decide. In the case of children, leave those choices up to the parents.
Many rights have been pared down by government. The process is slow, and with each generation the old freedoms are forgotten. That is the progressive nature of control.
Statues, murals, books and words are being whittled from society. Those doing the whittling are trying to form a society of a different shape. The more control the government amasses, the more power they gain.
When the Affordable Care Act was being argued at the Supreme Court, Justice Scalia warned (half-jokingly…note I say half) that once the government controlled healthcare, they would be able to force you to eat your broccoli!
All this imposition of rules on the population contributes to a collective thought process, rather than an individual rights dynamic. That might just be the real reason for all the group rules…whittle away at the idea of individual rights that our constitution was written to protect and get everyone used to listening to the government…or else… “No soup for you!” or in the case of NYC Public Schools where the taxpayers foot the bill…“No chocolate milk!” for your children.
Diana Erbio is a freelance writer and author of “Coming to America: A Girl Struggles to Find her Way in a New World”, along with her Blog Series, “Statues: The People They Salute”.