Letter: Overrated rights

July 7, 2014 

Barbara L. Mannion says in her June 25 letter that our rights (including Second Amendment rights) were never meant to be elevated to a theology. I agree. We've been too stuffy and uptight about our "religion of rights." We should loosen our collars and let our hair down in a way that benefits every American.

No soldiers quartered in our homes in peacetime? Hey, the more the merrier!

The right to a speedy trial? Why rush things? (Besides, we might find out that we like prison food.)

The First Amendment? Our national obsession with raising our voices is out of control. Forget shouting "Fire!" in a crowded theater. From now on, if we so much as whisper to the usher we get 25-to-life.

No cruel and unusual punishment? Our public response to Bernie Madoff proved that we think the Eighth Amendment is highly overrated.

No unlawful searches and seizures? We shouldn't be so attached to material possessions or, for that matter, to our privacy. (If we're doing nothing wrong, then we have nothing to worry about, correct?)

With each right we give up we'll feel the burden of personal responsibility lifted off our shoulders. We have nothing to lose but our chains.

NATHAN DIRKMAAT, Pasco

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