It’s a mantra of sorts for some. It can be seen splashed across the backs of vehicles in the form of bumper stickers. Groups have formed across the Internet using the phrase as their rallying cry. The statement is “Not In Anybody’s Backyard”.
The premise of that statement should give any lover of liberty pause. It assumes that if one body feels their beliefs and opinions are of the utmost importance, than anybody’s opinions should succumb and adhere to the mantra that the body with the loudest voice trumpets. It’s the essence of anarchy, the ruthless struggle of the strongman beating his way to the top of the heap to claim, for the moment, to be King of the Mountain. For a time, he has the opportunity to demand that anybody must embrace the belief system that his body is preaching.
Label me an old fashioned fool if you will, but I am not willing to surrender the jurisdiction of my backyard to any mantra, emotion or activism. There is no cause so grand that makes my privacy expendable nor should my belief in private property capitulate to the so-called greater good. Do we so easily lose sight of the consequences of our actions?
We are all creatures of passion, driven at varying degrees by the emotions attached to the things we hold dear. But when the passion has dissipated, what is the residue of our actions? What were we willing to sacrifice to gain the prize that fired our soul during the heat of the conflict?
Our Founding Fathers valued a man’s private life, his backyard. They detested the idea that one man could encroach upon another’s privacy just because he deemed it necessary, a means to an end. They objected in strong terms to the never-ending cycle of the toppling and resurrecting of strong men, its damage upon the people.
Are we so willing to forfeit the rights to our own land and, for our neighbor, his land, our backyards, to fulfill a vendetta we deem worthy? Does your backyard belong to anybody or does it belong to you? Which body should tell anybody what to do? My backyard is my backyard and I have no interest in allowing the opinions of others, of any stripe, supplant my authority, my rights, on my land.
From the moment we are willing to trade our freedoms and individuality for an emotion and passion, we have begun the slide toward the totalitarian concept where the strongest and loudest dictate the beliefs of others. Where then, will the freedoms we hold so dear be found? Quite frankly, not in anybody’s backyard.