A Narrative about Rights

Our neighbors the Nipps have begun raising chickens, and last night they gave us a dozen eggs, and refused to take money for them. That's the way it is in the country. We do for them, they do for us.
Our neighbors the Nipps have begun raising chickens, and last night they gave us a dozen eggs, and refused to take money for them. That’s the way it is in the country. We do for them, they do for us.

During the recent months of the coronavirus pandemic, we have seen an increasing number of social media posts claiming that requirements to wear a mask in public to help reduce contagion are a violation of our Constitutional rights.

It got me thinking about a few years ago when I was watching a prepper’s YouTube channel. He was showing us his gear. AR mags, single-point slings, body armor, ham radio, c-rations… wait, ham radio?

If I made the mistake of chiming in (which I did once) about the fact that to use amateur radio frequencies, you need an amateur radio license, I was set upon by foul-mouthed, angry, selfish jackasses, whose entire point seemed to be that they could do whatever they want.

I’ve written on this theme many times before, but the mask thing brought it all back into focus: far too many people in our society never grow up. They are like the two year old who grabs anything he wants from the candy aisle while his mother isn’t looking, because he wants it. Fine. That’s a reasonable survival strategy for an infant.

The collision occurs when adults behave in this way. They want, and they grab, but as adults, they have a much longer reach, and since so many people are grabbing, conflict will happen.

This is the essential opposite of patriotism. “Ask not what your country can do for you,” Kennedy said.

But what can my country do for me? Feed me candy? Feed me trite tv fiction? Feed me the idea that I have rights I want, or worse, imagine the Constitution gives them to me. Oddly, the Constitution has nothing to say about facemasks. Nothing.

Let me ask it this way: why would it be an important right not to wear a disposable surgical mask in public?

Let me ask it this way: it is mostly illegal for women to bare their breasts in public. Is this harmful? In fact, no, not at all. It is not illegal to publicly expose your nose and mouth. Is this harmful? Presently, yes! (Don’t get me started on the ridiculously of decency laws.)

From a friend I was forced to unfollow on social media recently…

“I’m reading so many conflicting reports on Facebook. I’m sure that’s by design.”

And

“I can’t find any good news sources on Facebook.”

Smooth, “Leslie.” Very smooth.

Also, preppers: the shit is hitting the fan right now, but your guns won’t save you. The splattered mess is far less cinematic and violent than you had hoped. In your grade school dreams, you would “lock and load,” then march down to the riot and … you know what happens next. You fantasize about doing it, but meanwhile you can’t stand the site of your awful wife, and can’t even get it up to jerk off about it because you are obese and diabetic.

I don’t want to be that way.

These very cheap, very cute handheld two-way radios are potentially one of the most dangerous tools in America. Through a technicality, these radios don't just transmit on amateur radio frequencies, they transmit on any public safety and business frequencies in the spectrum.
These very cheap, very cute handheld two-way radios are potentially one of the most dangerous tools in America. Through a technicality, these radios don’t just transmit on amateur radio frequencies, they transmit on any public safety and business frequencies in the spectrum.

1 Comment

  1. “…far too many people in our society never grow up…”

    This has become increasingly clear to me as I (attempt to) sculpt two tiny children into future citizens. One of them already seems grown up, emotionally – ready to compromise, curious, aware of the boundaries between her wants and others’ needs… The other seems *exactly* like so many legal adults I’ve known who never matured: impulsive, overly confident in his abilities, believing that the universe exists as his personal playground… In other words, a child.

    I may not be able to fix any of the millions of grown-up children, but I’ll do my damnedest to help this *one*.

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