I’ve always had a tendency to ask why. I have always questioned things – and that includes people in authority. Sometimes I did it respectfully, sometimes not. Most of the time it didn’t matter how I approached it, I ended up in trouble.

But it never deterred me from questioning things.

And I don’t understand why others don’t question things. It seems as though most Americans just take our laws and rules at face value and accept them without even batting an eye. It’s like this in every aspect. We don’t question and we just take it. What happened to the spirit of revolt that our country was founded on?

If the men and women who worked towards freeing themselves from Great Britain had just said, “Oh, it’s the law, and we have to abide by it,” then none of use would be who we are now.

It’s as though once we get a law, we abide by that law and there’s nothing we can do about it. Very seldom do we overturn a law, protest a law, or even care enough about it to present an alternative.

For instance – the immigration law.  I’m not an expert, but the way I understand it is that the US allows a certain number of people to enter the country from each country. If those people decide to become a citizen, then they have to follow a course of action in order to become naturalized. The image I get from this is that people can waltz into America, request naturalization and after passing the test become citizens. But it’s not like that. There are so many things that have to happen just to get to the point where someone can take the test.

Meanwhile, lots of people come into the country ‘illegally.’

Not once to we examine the law and see what we need to do to take the strain off the system. What if we just changed the number to allow a larger number of immigrants the opportunity to become citizens. It’s not like we’re running out of room. It’s not like these people come into the country expecting to become citizens and then live off the work of others. Most of the time, people are fleeing oppression or looking for a bigger opportunity.

But we don’t look at the law itself.

Other things that bother me are ‘safety’ laws. In Texas, there is a campaign called “Click it or Ticket,” which on the outside looks like an innocent enough law, right? It makes sense – wear a seatbelt, be safe. But that’s not the case. It’s in place so that fines can be imposed on those not obeying. It also gives police an excuse to pull someone over, ticket them, and execute a search.

Don’t get me wrong – I wear my seatbelt each time I get into the car. I think it’s smart to do. I also wear helmets when riding motorcycles.

But, I don’t think that I should be required by law to wear one. I think anyone over the age of 18 should be allowed to make that decision themselves. I know that there is a bigger chance of survival in an accident when all occupants are wearing seatbelts. But I don’t think the government should make money off of those who don’t wear one.

Same thing with DUI and DWI. On the surface, it looks like something you’d want in place to prevent unnecessary deaths on the roads. It makes sense to not drive if one has been driving. But if it was such a big deal, how is it that people are still driving after getting multiple DUI/DWIs? I think the current record for DWI is 33 or so. THIRTY FRIGGEN THREE times a man has been busted for driving under the influence. Doesn’t sound like we really care too much about the safety when we have people with 10, 20, and 30 DWIs.  Sounds like the state enjoys the money this man pays each time he gets pulled over.

When I was in Iceland, the law was explained to me like this – everyone in the vehicle can be drinking, but if the driver has even a hint of alcohol on the breath, then the driver loses his/her drivers license (permanently, I think) and fined the amount of one year’s salary (which the average at the time was $100k). If we were really concerned about the safety of others, then we’d get busted for DWI one time. ONCE. Only Once. None of this 30 times nonsense.

I hear all the time about prison overcrowding. How the US has the highest percentage of inmates per population than any other country in the world. But we just look at that stat and move on. Isn’t there something wrong, when we have a very high percentage of people in prison? Shouldn’t we take a look as to why these people are in prison? Shouldn’t we question the laws that are in place that requires us to incarcerate so many people?

One of the things I blame is the “War on Drugs.” The majority of our inmates are there on drug related charges, from what I understand. Why don’t we alter our laws? Look at Amsterdam – drugs and prostitution are both legal, and Amsterdam is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. Crime isn’t high there. It’s like the government trusts its citizens. Give them an outlet, and for the most part it can be handled in a mature manner.

Which makes me think – it’s only a crime if there’s a law against it. The crime rate goes up when there are more laws. If you get rid of the law, then the crime rate drops. If you want to lower the crime rate, change the laws.

Something that very few people understand about jury duty is that when serving, you, as a juror, have the opportunity to challenge the law. I believe it’s called “Jury Nullification.” It’s possible to overturn a law – even if the evidence supports that the defendant is guilty of that law.

I think we, as Americans, need to challenge our laws more often. We need to challenge our leaders. We need to question everything in our daily lives. We’re too complacent when it comes to those in authority. Look around you – I’m pretty sure you’re breaking some law right now. If not, you will be soon.

Question authority. Man is not infallible.

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