One of the most recurring statements I have been reading about those elected officials who are right now not responding adequately to the yearns of people to open their states/cities, since it is so clear by now what this covid19 is all about, is that several of them are good people, folks with integrity, honor, and spirit of service. Our Founding Fathers wouldn't disagree with that at all. They were adamant about the high levels of character to be expected from elected and appointed civil servants.
Nonetheless, they believed that far above and beyond a socially acceptable good behavior was both the capacity of those leaders to protect individual's natural rights (life, liberty, property, pursuit of happiness), and to separate their "low nature" (passions, impulses) from their "high nature" (reason, morality) in their decision-making processes, more specifically called by James Madison as "cool and sedated reflections."
In view of this, I will affirm here (please contrast it with your argument if you disagree) that the vast majority of local, state and federal elected and appointed civil servants right now are engaging in a utopian view of life, allowing the passions of their agendas, whatever they are, to override reason. For that, were our Founding living today, they would say, "limit their power."
In 1787, Madison recorded 11 vices of political leaders, pointing out that whenever they showed up the results of their decisions would be bad policy, impracticality, injustice, thus not fulfilling the true and central purpose of government.
Publius specifically pointed out the 9th and 10th vices as quite damaging to the health of the nation. They are multiplicity of laws, and mutability of laws.
Think about it! Isn't that, exactly, what we've been experiencing in this country today in this coronavirus mess? Solid constitutional rights were replaced with whimsical, capricious, tyrannical mandates. Police officers, who swore an oath to protect the Constitutional shamelessly affirm to a citizen that "constitutional rights have been suspended" and publicly put peaceful citizens in handcuffs in front of their children. Businesspeople who open their businesses are snitched and taken to jail. Government officials tell pastors that if they do not follow their "smart, scientific" guidelines, they can face indictments and jail time. They are tracking us down via smartphone location devices, harassing us, or as the mayor of LA bluntly said, "hunting us down." Outrageously bad, impractical, unjust policies right under our nose!
Our Founders provided leaders with many answers as to how to keep citizens morally capable of sustaining freedom.
It is time for us to turn the heat on them. Because their tree is just rotten!
ELIEL ROSA has built a solid career in the urban planning and public policy arenas in Brazil, Latin American countries, Portuguese-speaking African nations, Spain and in the US for the past 20 years. However, instead of keeping a long list of professional credentials and accomplishments, there is a special, top feature he would want you to retain: he is a diehard America-loving legal immigrant!