Sunday, May 3, 2009

Is Drink-Till-You-Puke The Only Inviolable Right?

Most Americans regard their country to be the best in the world. The reason most often given is that it is unquestionably freer than other nations which they are unable to locate on the world map. U.S. presidents, mirroring that boundless vanity, find it difficult to refrain from self-righteously reminding foreign leaders of that fact, sometimes as a prelude to and justification for initiating costly and senseless wars that kill and maim thousands of innocent people. Individual lives and monetary outlays are unimportant considerations when one believes in might for right and foolish ends justify violent means.

In truth, however, almost all of the precious substantive and procedural liberties enshrined in the Bill of Rights are routinely subjected to political controls, manipulation, debate, compression, stretching, massaging, warping, torture, neglect, misunderstanding, misinterpretation, contempt, infringement, loathing and violation.

It seems that the only popular activities which have not recently been subjected to enhanced interrogation techniques include the production, distribution and consumption of alcoholic beverages. In rare displays of wisdom politicians choose to leave those alone.

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