Pubdate: Sat, 01 Aug 2015
Source: Dayton Daily News (OH)
Copyright: 2015 Dayton Daily News
Author: Alex Scholp
Note: One of our regular community contributors, Alex Scholpwas a 
life insurance salesman for 31 years and a freelance writer for The 
Dayton Association of Financial Advisors' monthly newsletter over 25 
years. He lives in SpringValley.


Living in the United States is an amazing experience. We have 
unlimited opportunities to achieve success while being allowed to 
exist in a free nation. The first amendment gives us the right to say 
and write anything we wish and we can move freely cross our 50 states 
as we please.

Having said that, I feel we are slowly having our rights taken from 
us. We are not as free as our grandparents who lived here 100 years 
ago. Our lawmakers have made the concern for our safety more 
important than our personal rights. They make laws for our own good, 
and maybe to an extreme.

For instance, why is wearing a seat belt a law? That should be an 
individual choice. Cars now have air bags which may be safer than 
seat belts. Not wearing a seat belt effects only the driver or passengers.

Will the law ever make it illegal to own a chainsaw, one of the most 
dangerous tools one can use? No.

For the same reason, firearms should not be made illegal. Maybe 
automatic weapons, but not a handgun or rifle.

Marijuana is now the big debate. Legalizing it in Colorado did not 
sink the state. It created more tax revenue than gambling does. 
Marijuana is not as detrimental to society as alcohol. History proved 
people were going to consume alcohol whether it is legal or not. 
Marijuana is the same way; we should make it legal and see what happens.

We have a heroin epidemic in Dayton. Legalize it and spend the money 
on rehabilitating those with a problem. That sounds insane, but I 
feel it would be an improvement over what the laws are doing. The 
entire "war on drugs" has been a 40-year trillion dollar mistake. Put 
the drug dealers and their violence out of business. Empty the jails 
of all those arrested on marijuana and illegal drug charges. Take it 
off their record, so they can get a job. If it makes the situation 
worse, change the law back to something that has proven will not 
work: the present "war on drugs."

People do not want to lose their precious freedom. It is a privilege 
most nations do not recognize as important. Lawmakers should not make 
decisions for us as long as we do not harm someone else.

I do not want it legal for someone to shoot me at the Dayton Mall 
over my wallet or car, but firearms should be legal to own. I do not 
want it legal for a drunk driver to kill me, but I feel alcohol 
should be legal to own and consume.

I would hope buying a clothesline will not become illegal because 
someone hangs himself.

I hope cars and trucks do not become illegal because 30,000 people 
are killed each year in the country in motor vehicle accidents.

Smoking kills over 475,000 Americans each year, but cigarette smoking 
is not illegal.

I feel responsible people should not be punished when a small 
percentage of the public act irresponsibly. That percentage will 
always exist no matter what the laws are.

Freedom comes at a big price.
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MAP posted-by: Jay Bergstrom