The Freeman's Burden:

To defend the principles of human liberty; to educate; to be vigilant against the ever expanding power of the state.

Monday, August 01, 2005

What is a Conservative to do?

Alberta's legislature will vote this week on a plan to use the"not withstanding clause" of that country's Constitution to protect public officials from performing same-sex marriage against their will. The legislation will also protect churches from legal liability if they refuse to marry or recognize the marriages of gay couples. Read more about this story here and here. Even though I personally believe that governments should get out of the business of regulating relationships, neither should any individual be coerced to perform services which contradict their personal beliefs. The efforts made by Alberta to strike a balance reflects why it is better for states (or in this case, provinces) to set their own social policies rather than have a national policy imposed on them that does not reflect the values of the community. In the United States, the 10th Amendment was included in the US Constitution because it created an environment where 13 states could be 13 experiments in liberty. However, over the years, the Federal Government has consolidated many of the powers the Constitution left specifically to the States. As a result, we enjoy far less choice and far less liberty.


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