Let's apply tolerance to the pocketbook

One day when I was just a wee lad, I and the rest of my grade school class received some very sage advice about how to balance our rights against those of our fellow man.  Our teacher stood with arms outstretched and said, 'You have a right to hold out your arms like this and spin around as much as you want, but your right to do that ends where someone else's nose begins.' 

 

This self—evident truth is not something that any of us would dispute.  But nevertheless, there are those among us who are perfectly willing to bop others in the schnoz just so they can spin to their heart's content.

 

What am I talking about?  Well, this is a very big country and many of its denizens embrace some very bizarre behaviors, activities and ideas — as they say on that old TV show, 'There are eight million stories in the naked city.'  But we Americans are a very tolerant people in many ways, so we tend to not care about what you do on your own time behind closed doors.  For instance, if you intend to hold a sex symposium, we're not going to storm your abode and stop you.  In fact, most of us wouldn't even complain too much if you asked us to volunteer money to finance the affair, although I think the majority would also tell you that you must have mistaken them for the Marquis de Sade.  A problem would arise, though, if you tried to forcibly extract money from us for such a purpose.  And, outrageously, this is exactly what's happening — through government. 

 

What I'm referring to is that our tax dollars are routinely used to fund causes and events that range from the simply inane to the downright destructive — all without the approval of virtually all of us.  And this is wrong.  Because you can pursue whatever endeavor you want, but your right to do that ends where someone else's wallet begins.

    

The list of inappropriate programs that taxpayers are forced to pony up cash for reads like a what's what of frivolity, lunacy and indecency.  There's the sex workshop held at the University of Arizona, which includes a display dealing with sado—masochism.  Also in Arizona in the city of Phoenix, there's a government program that offers free tattoo removal.  Then there's the government sponsored and funded 'Girl Power' program, which includes an internet site on which some girls post demeaning comments about boys.  We also have the 'National Endowment for the Arts,' which hasn't hesitated to fork over our money to museums that display works like a statuette of Jesus Christ immersed in a bowl of urine.  There are also the funds that are given to the 'Public Broadcasting Station,' which produces documentaries that promote homosexual behavior.  Then you have the illegal aliens who can avail themselves of the in—state tuition rates in California.   Oh, and I should mention, we citizens who reside in other states would have to pay the higher, out—of—state tuition.  And bear in mind that this is just a small sampling of offenses against taxpayer trust that are legion.

    

What's so outrageous about this nonsense is that the people who advocate it demand that we be tolerant of their pursuits, but are completely unwilling to return the favor.  You see, we all have different spending priorities and have our own causes and pet projects that we want to fund, and when they steal our money it renders us less able to do that. Additionally, many of us don't want to see our resources used to finance projects that we find to be offensive.  Yet, these folks still sanctimoniously insist that not only do they have a right to plumb the depths of foolishness and depravity, but they also have a right to use our cash to serve that end.  But they're wrong, because your right to do that ends where someone else's wallet begins.

    

Now, since there's one in every bunch, I realize that some will find that the things I've condemned accord with their sensitivities.  They may not object to such uses of taxpayer money; they may say that if a people decides to empower government to allocate funds for such purposes, it's just fine — that's the social contract.  But these folks would do well to remember that they shouldn't confuse the social contract with the socialist contract, nor should it be a contract taken out on the hopes, dreams, aspirations and resources of the American people.

 

Of course, I know that these pickpockets would get the point if they were forced to support my causes and donate to my charities.  Just imagine the reaction from the left if their tax money was used to finance the Christian Coalition, National Rifle Association and Opus Dei.  The hue and cry that would ensue would reach the heavens as they vociferously decried the practice of taking other people's money and using it for your charities.  And you know what?  They would be right.

    

This is just another reason why government should not stray beyond the boundaries that the founding fathers established for it.  Some will say that their tax money is used to finance the military and that they find that objectionable, but that's a fallacious argument.  This is because there are certain things that only the government can do or that the private sector must not do, like raising an army and building roads.  However, charity, frivolity and recreation are not among them.  They should be the domain of private entities.

 

Moreover, having a small government would enable us to keep taxes low, and this is moral because it would afford all of us the freedom to spend most of our money in ways that are congruent with the dictates of our conscience.  Then, if you wanted to donate to the Sierra Club and the ACLU and I wanted to donate to Priests for Life and The Boy Scouts, we'd both have far more money to operate with.  Also, instead of the government appropriating a lot of our income and financing a lot of things we find objectionable, it would only take a little of our income and at worst would finance just a few things we found objectionable.  The bottom line is that less of our money would fund what we abhor and more would fund what we adore.

 

The left can preach tolerance till the cows come home, but it's all just talk until it puts its money where its mouth is and applies tolerance to the pocketbook — and this is what moral people would do.  Because we all have the right to fight the good fight — but that right ends where someone else's wallet begins.

 

Selwyn Duke is a frequent contributor

One day when I was just a wee lad, I and the rest of my grade school class received some very sage advice about how to balance our rights against those of our fellow man.  Our teacher stood with arms outstretched and said, 'You have a right to hold out your arms like this and spin around as much as you want, but your right to do that ends where someone else's nose begins.' 

 

This self—evident truth is not something that any of us would dispute.  But nevertheless, there are those among us who are perfectly willing to bop others in the schnoz just so they can spin to their heart's content.

 

What am I talking about?  Well, this is a very big country and many of its denizens embrace some very bizarre behaviors, activities and ideas — as they say on that old TV show, 'There are eight million stories in the naked city.'  But we Americans are a very tolerant people in many ways, so we tend to not care about what you do on your own time behind closed doors.  For instance, if you intend to hold a sex symposium, we're not going to storm your abode and stop you.  In fact, most of us wouldn't even complain too much if you asked us to volunteer money to finance the affair, although I think the majority would also tell you that you must have mistaken them for the Marquis de Sade.  A problem would arise, though, if you tried to forcibly extract money from us for such a purpose.  And, outrageously, this is exactly what's happening — through government. 

 

What I'm referring to is that our tax dollars are routinely used to fund causes and events that range from the simply inane to the downright destructive — all without the approval of virtually all of us.  And this is wrong.  Because you can pursue whatever endeavor you want, but your right to do that ends where someone else's wallet begins.

    

The list of inappropriate programs that taxpayers are forced to pony up cash for reads like a what's what of frivolity, lunacy and indecency.  There's the sex workshop held at the University of Arizona, which includes a display dealing with sado—masochism.  Also in Arizona in the city of Phoenix, there's a government program that offers free tattoo removal.  Then there's the government sponsored and funded 'Girl Power' program, which includes an internet site on which some girls post demeaning comments about boys.  We also have the 'National Endowment for the Arts,' which hasn't hesitated to fork over our money to museums that display works like a statuette of Jesus Christ immersed in a bowl of urine.  There are also the funds that are given to the 'Public Broadcasting Station,' which produces documentaries that promote homosexual behavior.  Then you have the illegal aliens who can avail themselves of the in—state tuition rates in California.   Oh, and I should mention, we citizens who reside in other states would have to pay the higher, out—of—state tuition.  And bear in mind that this is just a small sampling of offenses against taxpayer trust that are legion.

    

What's so outrageous about this nonsense is that the people who advocate it demand that we be tolerant of their pursuits, but are completely unwilling to return the favor.  You see, we all have different spending priorities and have our own causes and pet projects that we want to fund, and when they steal our money it renders us less able to do that. Additionally, many of us don't want to see our resources used to finance projects that we find to be offensive.  Yet, these folks still sanctimoniously insist that not only do they have a right to plumb the depths of foolishness and depravity, but they also have a right to use our cash to serve that end.  But they're wrong, because your right to do that ends where someone else's wallet begins.

    

Now, since there's one in every bunch, I realize that some will find that the things I've condemned accord with their sensitivities.  They may not object to such uses of taxpayer money; they may say that if a people decides to empower government to allocate funds for such purposes, it's just fine — that's the social contract.  But these folks would do well to remember that they shouldn't confuse the social contract with the socialist contract, nor should it be a contract taken out on the hopes, dreams, aspirations and resources of the American people.

 

Of course, I know that these pickpockets would get the point if they were forced to support my causes and donate to my charities.  Just imagine the reaction from the left if their tax money was used to finance the Christian Coalition, National Rifle Association and Opus Dei.  The hue and cry that would ensue would reach the heavens as they vociferously decried the practice of taking other people's money and using it for your charities.  And you know what?  They would be right.

    

This is just another reason why government should not stray beyond the boundaries that the founding fathers established for it.  Some will say that their tax money is used to finance the military and that they find that objectionable, but that's a fallacious argument.  This is because there are certain things that only the government can do or that the private sector must not do, like raising an army and building roads.  However, charity, frivolity and recreation are not among them.  They should be the domain of private entities.

 

Moreover, having a small government would enable us to keep taxes low, and this is moral because it would afford all of us the freedom to spend most of our money in ways that are congruent with the dictates of our conscience.  Then, if you wanted to donate to the Sierra Club and the ACLU and I wanted to donate to Priests for Life and The Boy Scouts, we'd both have far more money to operate with.  Also, instead of the government appropriating a lot of our income and financing a lot of things we find objectionable, it would only take a little of our income and at worst would finance just a few things we found objectionable.  The bottom line is that less of our money would fund what we abhor and more would fund what we adore.

 

The left can preach tolerance till the cows come home, but it's all just talk until it puts its money where its mouth is and applies tolerance to the pocketbook — and this is what moral people would do.  Because we all have the right to fight the good fight — but that right ends where someone else's wallet begins.

 

Selwyn Duke is a frequent contributor