To the editor:
According to the dictionary, the definition of freedom is liberty of personal choice, action, or thought. Self determination, the condition of enjoying civil liberty without interference, coercion, or restrictions, etc. That is a lot to digest. Imagine how wonderful life would be living under such a set of conditions. Governments like to feel it is their duty to place a lot of restrictions upon all of its citizens. With these restrictions comes a lot of taxes to hire an extremely large quantity of government employees to enforce and/or modify them. Seems like somewhere along the line things got a little out of hand. I read that we have in excess of 5,000,000 laws on the books in the U.S.A. to enforce the Ten Commandments. That is more than a little mind bending and unnecessary. Most of our laws are not even enforced and those that are enforced make loads of exceptions for various groups of people.
I cannot help wondering about the ability to provide freedom in the area we need it most. Our personal lives and emotions. How may we provide freedom for those tortured souls among us trapped in a body full of strange, bizarre, and grotesque thoughts and behavior? Is it possible for them ever to be free? Or those suffering from a most serious loss and have difficulty coping with it?
I recall a song about being "A prisoner of love" and being too weak to break the chains that bind us. These people, like the preceding group, are prisoners of their mind. Just how do you propose to free them? At one time or another, we have all experienced a bit of this torment. Freedom is most elusive with respect to mental anguish.
We dare not overlook the untold thousands of people-past, present, and future - in prisons without freedom of any kind and very dim prospects of release, other than by death. Some of them have certainly been unjustly incarcerated, to be sure. Many falsely accused, some others standing firm on unpopular views or opinions.
Think of the many ways it is possible to lose our freedom. The possibilities are endless. Bad relationships and marriages. Harmful addictions. Mental deficiencies. Defective governments. In the past, economical difficulties could put one away. Probably in some parts of the world, this is still true. This same rule applies to unpopular political opinions. Then there are always some around that can not afford sufficient nourishment and hydration and have very little, if any, hope. These unfortunate folks are the homeless among us. Their's is a prison without a roof, walls, or bars. How do we free them??
It is a noble gesture to sing about "Freedom that rings from every mountain side," or to make an eloquent political speech espousing morals, (that in many cases do not exist), dedication, sincerity, honesty, commitment, ethics, & love of country & mankind in general. Afraid it is a little more complex than that. Absolute freedom does not exist at all. Now or ever. There are different levels of freedom applying at a varying degree to all levels of every society. Absolute freedom and equality, exists only in our minds. There is only one key that will eventually unlock the door to total freedom and equality. We will be presented with that key the instant we exhale our last breath. The ultimate solution, our final act, our last sunset! Free at last, free at last, free at last!