I was out for a run this morning with my dog Scout and thinking about what to write in my next blog. Scout is a 7 year old yellow lab-golden mix. He is a good dog, but admittedly, not a great dog. What he lacks is trail manners. He means well, but some hikers don’t appreciate it when Scout introduces himself to their well-behaved, often leashed, Fido. Scout listens well at times, but only when he is really tired and ready to go home and catch up on his 20 hours of daily sleep. But it’s tough to run or bike with a dog on a leash and I believe in setting things free. However, the leash is a must if at the trail head I see the orange jeep (mean dog) or the blue Honda (humpster)!
Scout was originally bred to be a service dog, but did not make the cut. Rejected, he was offered to me by the breeder at a deep discount. Maybe that should have raised a flag, but like many Americans, I’m always looking for a deal. I already had a lab, and didn’t need another one (at least according to my wife). But I am not one to walk away from a bargain! So 7 years later, Scout and I are inseparable, except when a tall, blonde, poodle comes running down the trail.
So that brings me to my topic for this week, leash laws, or just laws in general. Who creates these restrictions to my freedom? The answer goes way back to when America was first formed as a union. As Ronald Reagan reminded us in his final address, it’s “We the people.” Reagan said “we the people tell the government what to do.” “We the people” determine laws, even if it is through the election process. The formation of laws in American does not infringe on our freedom, it’s what makes us free; a majority consensus, the will of the people, government by the people and for the people. This is what makes us different, unique, and yes, special. Other countries admire the freedoms we enjoy. Our sons (and now daughters) die to protect this ideal. Ronald Reagan reminded us that we have the power to change the law, even leash laws, as long as we can get enough of our neighbors to agree.
So what’s this talk of an open and contested convention? That does not sound like “we the people,” it sounds like “us the politicians!” My urge to the GOP is to follow the advice of our British friends and “Let it be.” And that’s good advice for the Democrats as well. If “we the people” want a non-traditional President, embrace it. Then ask yourselves why “we the people” want a change…
“Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same” – Ronald Reagan