from The American Thinker:
John M. Horne was born in 1813 in the Land of the Free, an inheritance from several distant uncles who fought against Cornwallis The home of the brave came before the land of the free.
Shortly after John and Clarissa Warren married in 1843, they made the long journey from North Carolina to western Kentucky. Their simple farm life was free from any king or tyrant in a distant capital. In the land of the free, no one could tell them what to do with their property or how much of their money they could keep.
John died sometime between 1860 and 1870, perhaps in the Civil War. His teenage son, John C., took the responsibility of caring for Clarissa and his sister, and later had his own family and care for two orphaned grandchildren. Courage to take personal responsibility is required to live in the land of the free.
An older John C. witnessed the “soak the rich” campaign resulting in the 16th Amendment, the income tax. For the first time in the nation’s history, government was positioned against the individual citizen. How much of that citizen’s property could be confiscated and for what purpose was limited only by the “wisdom” of Congress. Taxpayers later found their funds going to subsidize indolence, to groups with political connections, and for other uses outside the limits on the federal government the Founders clearly wrote into the Constitution.
As far as the IRS is concerned, all men are not created equal. In the land of the free, an individual has an inalienable right to his property, but not in the land of the IRS. Productive citizens became slaves to others, like indentured servants who can never buy their freedom. The Founders abhorred such a concept. Every April, some Americans quietly pay, while others collect their share of redistribution, as if it flowed from some eternal mountain spring. In the home of the brave, theft is resisted, and extorted money is not accepted.
With extorted money available, the land of the free became increasingly buried under progressive mega-government, like FDR’s second Bill of Rights and Lyndon Johnson’s War on Poverty. The left argued that that complex nature of modern society requires more government control. So did Benito Mussolini in 1929:
We were the first to assert that the more complicated the forms assumed by civilization, the more restricted the freedom of the individual must become.
FDR, said to be for the little guy, stated in his first Inaugural Address that the nation must act “as a trained and loyal army willing to sacrifice for the good of a common discipline.” This sacrificing collective evidently included all the little guys. The land of the free was passé.
We have since “progressed” to a level of government coercion that makes King George III look like a benevolent grandfather by comparison. Imagine somewhere in our time, John Q. (no relation) drives his car, with all the government-mandated features, to the supermarket to return the pecan cake which had been recalled due to lack of an allergy warning label. He bought the cake because home-baked goods are not allowed at school fundraisers. He was already in hot water for saying “God help us” when the school board changed the football team’s name from the Indians to the Turtles over loud objections of those attending the meeting.