Letter: If bad precedents, it’s the president’s doing
Norris H. Richardson’s Oct. 9th letter to the Gazette-Journal ("A very dangerous precedent," Readers Write) warning of a risk in "Tea Party Republicans"... "shutting the government down" would only be another hyperbolic howl if it weren’t so demonstrative of the large-scale chronic, historical and legal illiteracy that characterizes so many in our country. To write about "rule of law" as Mr. Richardson does in connection with what we are witnessing in both the passage and implementation of Mr. Obama’s health care legislation, is to turn that phrase on its head.
What we are witnessing in the current debate are two political sides in conflict, with one using the conventional procedures in place to attempt to affect a very unpopular legislative act’s implementation. I dare to wonder where Mr. Richardson might have been with Plessy v. Ferguson? Or with Dred Scott? For a long time, the U.S. Supreme Court also said those decisions were Constitutional.
Good law in the end is what is right and just. A government taking your money which is your property and telling you that you cannot make your own decisions on physicians or levels of care is tyranny. A government instructing IRS agents to withhold tax status to groups of individuals based on their political leanings and then sharing those citizens’ personal tax information with political operatives is tyranny. A government secretly making weapons available to Mexican criminals is an indictable offense. A government giving preferential treatment to certain groups that allows them to avoid the health care legislation’s impact is not equal protection under the law.
In the face of the recitation above, reining in certain "non-essentials" of the U.S. government is both a reasonable and responsible move. Mr. Richardson needs to wake up and smell the coffee. If there are any bad precedents being set, it’s by the guy in the White House who is actively at work to destroy individual liberty in this country. As the visitors to the recently "closed" military memorials told the compliant park police, "Shame on you."