When people want to get something important done in a democratic republic, chances are they’re going to have to find others who feel strongly about the same issue(s) and organize, which empowers them to live freely, happily, and effectively. An active and moral citizenry is, after all, crucial to the survival of a free state. But after looking at Western history over the past 50 years, we find that a dangerous trend has been adopted toward the regulation of groups: the civil liberties of the individual, which are guaranteed by the Bill of Rights, become severely restricted as soon as those individuals join hands with others to accomplish goals according to their consciences.
For instance, the first amendment–which protects freedom of speech–is strangely absent when people organize in political action committees. As an individual, you are entitled (for the most part) to speak your mind according to your conscience, but when people who believe in something want to make a political difference in their world, rules suddenly appear for what can be said, when they can say it, and who they can accept money from. To our government, freedom of speech and the liberty to raise capital matter, but only when you’re alone and don’t want to affect your country. (more…)