Letters to the Editor

Letter: Our non-negotiable constitutional rights

To the Editor:

If our inherent and non-negotiable rights are embraced during times of peace, prosperity and health, then they must be embraced and expanded during times of war, depression and pandemic. In history, these rights have been temporarily suspended.

Every time our government has done so, America has been worse off for it. Many state governments are suspending First Amendment rights and other essential liberties by continuing to scale up data-tracking. Let me be clear: we can fight coronavirus without surrendering our American way of life.

We can defeat coronavirus faster by making the individual choice to follow common sense guidelines through our personal will and voluntary commitments. We do not need to follow a quasi-authoritarian model to achieve success. We can prove to the world that individual freedom goes farther than individual restrictions. The effort will be truer and effective if we summon the strength to stop this scourge without government mandate, tracking or coercion. We need a leader who inspires American citizens to act in accordance with their own personal choice rather than out of fear of punishment.

We need a leader who compels all of us to be our best selves. The liberties enshrined in our Constitution are wonderful during happy times. However, they are even better, and absolutely critical to exercise, during terribly sad times of war and suffering. More ventilators, testing and personal protective equipment? More financial assistance and jobs programs to combat poverty? More Paycheck Protection Program funding? Yes, yes and yes.

Our federal government has an obligation to meet every last commitment regarding those life-saving measures and medical tools. We can believe in science and reason while fighting to preserve basic constitutional protections. It is not a binary choice and anyone that tells you that it is intends to mislead you. We have a long way to go in this war against Coronavirus.

These are some of the most painful times in American history. Approaching 100,000 innocent Americans dead and a world in pain. I am devastated about it and I know you are, too. We may be hurt but we are not broken.

Henry Wilson

Barrington

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