Everyone Is On Welfare

Conservatives hate welfare.

They hate it because of how hard they work and how much of the money they earn goes to some people who never work.

They hate it because of how frequently the system is abused.

They hate it because it keeps people dependent upon the government instead of helping them to stand on their own.

Conservatives really hate welfare.

Until they need it.

I learned this one day when I went out to eat at an Indiana restaurant with my wife and then two-year-old son.  As soon as we sat down I noticed a strange smell.  I looked around and noticed a table next to us where people were smoking.  I was furious.  These people were openly breaking the law by smoking inside of a restaurant.

And then I remembered that I wasn’t in Georgia anymore.  No law was being broken.  As we relocated to the no-smoking section I started to miss my home state where it is illegal to smoke in a restaurant like the one we were at.

I consider myself to be somewhat libertarian.  I think that for the most part, businesses and individuals should be free to do what they want without interference from the government so long as they do not infringe upon the rights of others.  For me, “smoking in public” falls under the For the Most Part Clause.

We all have our For the Most Part Clause.

Americans, particularly those of us who are conservative or libertarian, like to talk a lot about freedom but in reality we want nothing of the sort.  Real freedom scares us.  Real freedom means that we may have to find another restaurant to eat at, one where the owner decided on his own to ban smoking.

Everyone is on welfare.  Some of us expect the government to act in order to keep us from having to inhale cigarette smoke while others just want a check without having to work.  Still others are willing to actually vote for higher taxes as long as it means better parks, roads or football stadiums.

Until Americans decide to truly embrace liberty and all the risk and sacrifice that comes along with it, each November we will only find ourselves trading one form of welfare for another.