The Buzzkills in Salem

I often joke with my friends about how whenever the Oregon Legislature goes into session it means your freedoms are at risk until Sine Die. Unfortunately recent events indicate that there are forces at work in the capitol building who are a real buzzkill.

House Bill 3441 would make it a crime to bring alcohol to public beaches here in Oregon.  Additionally the State Senate  has already approved Senate Bill 754A, which would raise the smoking age in Oregon to 21.  Hell, Governor Brown even wants to slap a fine on you for floating down the river without a lifejacket.

Now call me old fashion, but I tend to believe that freedom includes the ability to make bad decisions.  And if the pioneers didn’t make the trip out west so that they could enjoy a nice drink of alcohol next to the majestic Pacific Ocean, then I don’t know why they even took the Oregon trail.

I don’t want to live in an Oregon where we tell a 19 year old in the military that they can’t have a cigar when he is back home on leave, or and Oregon where someone saves up vacation time for months to take a trip to the coast that they can’t sit next to a bonfire on the beach and have a beer.

Are cigarettes dangerous? Do people litter on the beach at times? Do life jackets make you safer? Absolutely!

But you know what, freedom is dangerous.  Freedom is messy.  Heck, sometimes freedom can even kill you.

The beauty of America is that we get to make those decisions for ourselves, not for other people. Smokers, non-smokers, micro-brew fanatics, and teetotalers all together make up the wacky, yet wonderful population of our beautiful state.  We will even claim those folks who vape.

I want my legislators to run the government, not act as my nanny.  I already have a mother to tell me not to smoke, to clean up after myself at the beach, or to wear a life-jacket, I don’t need politicians to do it too.

  • Oregon Engineer

    so what you are really talking about are libertarian principles such as the natural right to self ownership. This state does not believe that we own ourselves with all the laws against smoking, drinking, use of life jackets. I agree, life is dangerous. Governments are even more dangerous and especially so when busy bodies stick there noses into private lives and force us not do something or force us to do things according to them. This includes the right to not provide business services to people according to your beliefs. The state has coerced us into doing things according to the state or you are forced out of business. And did I say the state does not believe in private property? along these lines of self ownership;

  • Bob Clark

    Oregon is busy body government. The state and most local governments can’t even bring themselves (because of lack of will and just plain ineptness) to prioritizing basic services like police and road maintenance; but wow, these government folks sure think they know better than the rest of us how we should live our lives and bail out folks who don’t apply themselves. I wish there was a local version of Mr. T running for Governor, so as to blow up this bloated state government regime.

  • Diane Ostrander

    Good article & point of view. At 73 I have made more mistakes than I can count, however, I had the freedom to make those mistakes, learn from them, and take responsibility for my actions. The bottom line is this nation is “dead” broke, and liberals want more freebies, ignore the fact their health insurance premium & deductible is three times more than before Obama care, and believe ACA is working. But “meals on wheels” will be cancelled…..except for the very poor….this program charges for that service. OR gov has more revenue income than ever before! In this case “Less is More.” Conservatives need to speak up, and it this state that is continual. For freedom!