Equality in Freedom or Equality in Slavery?

A distinguished visitor to America in its formative years had much to say about democracy and socialism.  "Democracy," he said, "extends the sphere of individual freedom, socialism restricts it.  Democracy attaches all possible value to each man; socialism makes each man a mere agent, a mere number.  Democracy and Socialism have nothing in common but one word, equality.  But notice the difference: while democracy seeks equality in liberty, socialism seeks equality in restraint and servitude."

It was Alexis de Tocqueville saying this in the 1830s.  He also said, "Americans are so enamored of equality that they would rather be equal in slavery than unequal in freedom."  (Tocqueville laid out his thinking on democracy in Democracy in America.)

That anything recorded nearly two hundred years ago regarding equality, democracy, and socialism could be hitting the nail on the head today may surprise the "woke."  But the awake have always been aware to some degree that equality of opportunity and equality of outcome are mutually exclusive.  The difference between them was clearly understood by our first activists who undertook to found a new country, America.  These were men who had fought dictatorial rule and dedicated their lives and their fortunes to establishing a country where equality with liberty may thrive — not just for themselves, but for future generations (us, for example).  And to that purpose they bequeathed us an instrument for remaining equally free instead of equally enslaved: our Constitution.  

Contrary to leftist naysaying rhetoric, the Constitution of the United States provides the best legal instructions possible for insuring equality with liberty for all.  That the Constitution is not always faithfully followed, even by Supreme Court justices, tells us that equality before the law can get corrupted into equality under the law, turning America's Law of the Land into an instrument of control by special-interest power players.

When political passion fails to get restrained by law above partisan interests, it corrupts government and hurts the people under its rule.  This came about in France during a revolution in 1789 that sought to destroy a corrupt monarchy, turning justice into barbarity at the guillotine.  In the rallying cry of the French Revolution — Liberté!  Egalité!  Fraternité! — truth was pummeled by political passion.  For in order for brothers to be free, they must be permitted to be unequal — allowed, that is, to follow their varied individual lights, and that leads inexorably to inequality of outcome.  

Our prophetic 19th-century visitor (Tocqueville) cautioned: "Egalité ... means, no one shall be better off than I am; and [where] this is preferred to good government, good government is impossible."

While pretending fairness, egalitarianism puts equality in a straitjacket of envy and vengeance.  The consuming fire of egalitarianism that started a Reign of Terror in France smolders still in movements like feminism, multiculturalism, and other rebellions against sound social order in the name of "social justice," marketed since the 1970s.  Their camouflage is wearing thin, since these attacks on the wrong enemy can't forever hide their underlying evil.

Leveling all people to a common denominator, the operating principle of egalitarianism, not only produces bloodbaths, as in the French Revolution, but reduces human life and its aspirations to servitude under morally handicapped leaders.  The founders of America would have none of this modern form of lording — no less oppressive than any serfdom of the past.  Determined to end the plague of dictatorial rule of the few over the many, they gave We the People the means to restrain those with ambitions to play god over the rest of us.  Do not wonder why the Constitution has been under fierce attack by the left.

Missed by believers in "equalizing" people "for their own good" is that societal leveling reduces the quality of life for everyone — including themselves.  It saps the incentive of every person to rise to a higher level of self, tapping into the natural inventiveness and creativity of human beings.  Dulling this innate faculty by reducing everyone to a common level — a damning feature of socialism — defeats the progress of well-being for all.

Mindless and heartless power players in and out of government lust for a form of "justice" cooked in a stew of Marxism and humanism, while they prepare (wittingly or not) a plague worse than any from nature.  Adding fake science to their stew, their "justice" becomes toxic.  Notice, currently, how a virus is allowed to take away our constitutional rights, tank the economy, incarcerate people in their homes, ruin countless lives...get you arrested, even, if you refuse to wear a mask...cancel Thanksgiving and Christmas...the insanity is without limit!  Tell me all this promotes well-being and expect me to swallow!  Sorry, but I'm aware that the toxic stew generating this insanity comes from a "recipe" created to purge Americans of their allegiance to country, family, and God.

How Marxist "morality" infiltrated churches across America would be a most reveal­ing topic of any primer on societal leveling and grooming for global dictatorship.  It would cut through the La-La Land of Liberal Logic to show that so-called liberation theology is not an evolutionary clarification of Christian doctrine, but a conspiratorial reset of Christianity to prepare the faithful for living in a "better world in a better tomorrow" according to Marxist doctrine.

With their thumbs in fake science, their noses in class politics, and their mouths in the media, the wannabe lords of the world have made an awful many Americans believe that science replaces wisdom, mediocrity replaces excellence, group overrules family, cheating and mayhem are compatible with justice, virtue is evil...and numerous other Orwellian reversals of sanity and intelligent regard for human life.  Do you wonder why "Love your neighbor as yourself" (Mark 12:31) doesn't seem to register in the minds of a good many leaders?

It really doesn't take any book to show that the price of well-being and freedom is eternal vigi­lance, that the most precious freedom is that of the mind, that no pursuit of happiness can even begin when freedom is denied in the name of "equality," that leveling minds to their lowest common denominator is a political giant step toward living in a world ruled by men with no scruples and no use for God.  Assuming eyes and brains that work, it is easy to see the evil behind the "new world order," the "great reset," and other names for the scheme to enslave people worldwide.

Unleveled, grassroots Americans aren't buying.  They are aware of the difference between freedom and slavery and will never accept the left's cultural insanity, marketed in Hollywood, on TV, in pop magazines, in college classrooms, in seminaries, and wherever God and His creation are rejected.  In vain do leftists accuse us of destroying democracy.  For the real culprits, they need to look in the mirror.

Anthony J. DeBlasi is a veteran and lifelong defender of Western culture.