Citizens Or Sheep?

By | April 15, 2021 | 0 Comments

Covid-19 has killed and sickened many thousands. But when we look back – assuming we have the wisdom to look back – we may conclude that the worst damage the pandemic did was not to our health, but to our freedom. Consider: We have now lived for 13 months under a state of emergency. I say under, not in, to denote that we are living under a dictatorial regime.

States of emergency were intended to last days, or at most weeks, to deal with riots or natural disasters like earthquakes or tornados. But how can civil liberties exist if they can be suspended indefinitely? What does representative government mean if the legislature can be bypassed for more than a year? What does democracy consist of if governors can rule by decree for as long as they please?

Yes, yes, I know – it’s all for our own good, for the sake of our health. But health can cover a very wide area. Diet is clearly related to health and longevity. Can state governors tell us what to eat, and what not to eat? If not, why not? Cleanliness is also related to health, especially during a pandemic. Can governors order us to wash our hands every hour? Every 10 minutes?

In his film “Bananas,” Woody Allen depicted a Castro-like dictator who goes insane. He orders everyone to wear their underwear over their clothes, so police can check to see that it is clean. The film was a comedy, even a farce. But the reality is far from amusing. I truly believe that if we were ordered to wear our underwear on top of our clothes, about half of Americans would comply – for the sake of their health, of course.

But acting like sheep can be risky. Sheep become accustomed to being fleeced from time to time. They do not suspect that the farm owner has other things in mind for them. So when they are herded together and led to the slaughterhouse, only a few of them think to question where they are going. Sheep don’t think much. They just comply. They don’t value freedom. They would only be confused by it.

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