The year is 1995. I lived in Southern California and was Captain of an 8-ball Billards League Team and driving with my Team - four men in yellow shirts, and the two in the back of my GMC Suburban had pool sticks in their hands. we were coming back from a successful match when I was pulled over (at approximately midnight) and told that my license plate light was out (no - don't get out of the vehicle!). Once we were determined to be (?) I was allowed to leave with only a 'warning'. I went 50 feet, stopped, pulled over, and we all got out to see my plate light shining in the night.
Is this the 'freedom' we must surrender to be 'secure'? Benjamin Franklin says that is never necessary, and I tend to agree with him.
Nobel Peace Prize winner and good friend of mine Mary Ruwart wrote in her marvelous book "Healing Our World":
"We reap as we sow. In trying to control others, we find ourselves controlled. We point fingers at the dictators, the Communists, the politicians, and the international cartels. We are blithely unaware that our desire to control selfish others creates and sustains them. Like a stone thrown in a quiet pond, our desire to control our neighbors ripples outward, affecting the political course of our community, state, nation, and world. Yet we know not what we do. We attempt to bend our neighbors to our will, sincere in our belief that we are benevolently protecting the world from their folly and short-sightedness. We seek control to create peace and prosperity, not realizing that this is the very means by which war and poverty are propagated. In fighting for our dream without awareness, we become the instruments of its destruction."
This conflict is coming to a head, and I, for one, can't wait until it happens, the shouting dies down, and we can then be left to our own devices, be once again secure in our 'persons, papers, and effects', and hold every man and woman accountable to their deeds (or misdeeds).