First they came - 2010 Version

Most everyone is familiar with the German anti-Nazi activist Martin Niemoller's renowned "First They Came" poem.  It is an ageless and frightening reminder of the need for eternal vigilance in defense of human rights and freedom.

I submit the 2010 American version:

They first came for the light bulbs, and I didn't speak up because I'm okay with fluorescents.

Then they came for the salt, and I didn't speak up because I have high cholesterol.

Then they came for the air conditioners, and I didn't speak up because I live up north.

Then they came for the Happy Meals, and I didn't speak up because I'm a Wendy's guy.

Then they came for the Oreos at school parties, and I didn't speak up because I'd already graduated.

Tyranny is timeless.  Whether it is born of good intentions or not, seeking to deprive citizens of their autonomy and independence is not a recipe for human happiness, but rather misery.

Though the outcry against it began on November 2nd, our "betters" continue trampling that which they are sworn to protect.  May our resistance be fierce.

Peter is a public high school government teacher and radio talk show host in central Indiana. Email
peter@peterheck.com or visit www.peterheck.com.
Most everyone is familiar with the German anti-Nazi activist Martin Niemoller's renowned "First They Came" poem.  It is an ageless and frightening reminder of the need for eternal vigilance in defense of human rights and freedom.

I submit the 2010 American version:

They first came for the light bulbs, and I didn't speak up because I'm okay with fluorescents.

Then they came for the salt, and I didn't speak up because I have high cholesterol.

Then they came for the air conditioners, and I didn't speak up because I live up north.

Then they came for the Happy Meals, and I didn't speak up because I'm a Wendy's guy.

Then they came for the Oreos at school parties, and I didn't speak up because I'd already graduated.

Tyranny is timeless.  Whether it is born of good intentions or not, seeking to deprive citizens of their autonomy and independence is not a recipe for human happiness, but rather misery.

Though the outcry against it began on November 2nd, our "betters" continue trampling that which they are sworn to protect.  May our resistance be fierce.

Peter is a public high school government teacher and radio talk show host in central Indiana. Email
peter@peterheck.com or visit www.peterheck.com.

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