Tuesday, September 15, 2015

“I” Ain’t “We”

Reason has re-published an editorial by Steve Chapman of the Chicago Tribune, entitled “This Is Why America Should Take More Syrian Refugees.”

The entirety of the editorial can be summed up by the subtitle: “We contributed to the problem. But we've barely allowed any in.”

I ain’t we.  I didn’t contribute to any problem, unless you want to blame the victim of armed robbery for the further criminal acts of the robber.

Reason is the monthly print magazine of "free minds and free markets." It covers politics, culture, and ideas through a provocative mix of news, analysis, commentary, and reviews. Reason provides a refreshing alternative to right-wing and left-wing opinion magazines by making a principled case for liberty and individual choice in all areas of human activity. (Emphasis added)

“Individual choice.”  I don’t expect an editorial writer for the Chicago Tribune to understand this.  However, it would be nice if the home of “free minds and free markets” understood what “individual choice” actually meant.

It would be nice, but I don’t expect this either.


  1. Come one, bionic. Is someone saying you are going to be forced to house a refugee in your house or on your property? Until someone says that, you have no private property complaint. Similarly, if I should decide to house a refugee, you would have no legitimate complaint.

    1. Ed, one thing I can always count on with you - context eludes you.

  2. We see this not just on the topic of Syrian refugees, but on immigration in general. The reason it is imperative to keep the discussion framed in the plural "we" instead of individuals is because then the discussion becomes much more complicated than many would prefer.

    Concerning the Syrian crisis specifically, it would require them to confront the detrimental impact such policies will have on the property rights of individuals already residing in the country who are not only taxed to pay for these foreign interventions but then are forced to pay for state welfare that will go to care for the victims of that meddling who come to their countries seeking refuge, as we're witnessing right now. It's even worse for countries that had nothing to do with causing the upheaval in the first place but are left with dealing with the consequences.

    I can appreciate the viewpoint expressed in articles like Chapman's, but what bewilders is how they write as if there is absolutely no legitimate reason anyone can be opposed to hundreds of thousands of people suddenly entering their country all at once and that this will involve no violation of of their private property rights in any way whatsoever.

    If there is such an opinion expressed out there, I would be interested in reading how such concerns are addressed. Like you said, it would be nice, but I don’t expect this.