Every election year, the American citizenry is treated to its own national "Theater of the Absurd." Establishment politicians and media assiduously avoid fundamental questions on the key issues of our day — for instance, the wisdom and sustainability of a profligate, world-straddling empire, the threat to constitutional liberties posed by an ever-expansive surveillance/police state, or the impoverishing effects of corporate-state cronyism, central banking, and a suffocating legal and regulatory regime. Instead, we're presented with a host of 'distraction issues' that divert attention from a status quo supported by both major parties, while also creating and encouraging conflict between various factions.
"Divide et impera." (Divide and conquer)
— Philip of Macedonia, 382-336 BC
This year, one such issue is the question of 'bathroom rights' — i.e., who should be permitted to use men's and women's restrooms. As with most modern political debates, the overriding assumption is that either the federal government or state governments should dictate a "one-size-fits-all" policy. On such a contentious issue, this approach is a recipe for divisiveness and belligerence, but it serves aspiring politicians who wish to accrue power by posing as a champion for one group or another.
Overlooked entirely in this debate is the critical importance of property rights in a free society. In a legal environment with respect for private property, the property owner decides which policy he or she thinks is best, and they reap the rewards or suffer the consequences accordingly. In either case, the issue ceases to serve as a political football. If I don't like the policy adopted by a business or organization, I'm free to go elsewhere — and if I feel strongly enough about it, I'm free to organize others to protest or boycott in an attempt to peacefully persuade them to change their ways.
Without respect for property rights, every issue evolves into a "war of all against all," as people fight bitterly for control of the state apparatus in order to impose their will on those with whom they disagree. A free society requires respect for property rights, and property rights require tolerance for others, something that's in mighty short supply in contemporary America.
To paraphrase Voltaire, "I may disagree with what you have to say, but I shall defend to the death your right to say it." By opting for coercive political 'solutions' over property rights, we ensure a future fraught with discord and violence, a reality that's rapidly unfolding in the western world today.
Speechless Tee — Men's Edition
Speechless Tee — Women's Edition