Can We Legislate Our Way to Perfection?

Vote yes or no

By William M Briggs Published on November 15, 2017

After atheist Devin Kelley attempted through mass murder to bring about his own personal Utopia at a small church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, many people advocated and sought solace in prayer. The call for this natural act triggered a good many celebrities.

Take Stephen King, a man who makes a living thinking of clever literary ways to kill and dismember. He tweeted, “Enough with praying. Time to start legislating.”

King is an entertainer and so we cannot expect him to remember that murder was already judged illegal by at least a majority of the States. But it’s his thought that legislation can be the cure for man’s fallen nature that is of real interest.

Vote Yes or No.

Can the government enact laws to bring about human perfection? Or at least heave us as close to that goal as possible?

That question was answered by the writers at The Babylon Bee, Christianity’s Onion. In response to the Texas murders, they published the article “In Move To Prevent Future Tragedies, Congress Bans Humanity’s Depraved Nature.

In a move to prevent any future tragedies of any kind, Congress passed sweeping legislation Monday that bans mankind’s totally depraved nature from the country …

“This has gone on long enough,” House Speaker Paul Ryan said in a press conference. “We keep saying there’s nothing we can do to prevent this, but now we see there is: just ban human nature and all these problems go away.”

“It’s the obvious solution,” he added.

Congressional projections indicate the new measure will result in a huge boost in peace, love, and harmony in every demographic across the U.S., and should cut violent death statistics down to “approximately zero” almost immediately.

All Those Who Say Aye

Some imagine a just such a future. Take Lieutenant Sulu (George Takei). He tweeted on behalf of Star Fleet:

Under the auspices of the United Federation of Planets, we not only have universal health care, we have free, universal education, housing, and food, as well as strict control of dangerous phasers. Political parties voluntarily disbanded long ago after all humans became educated.

Sulu forgot to mention the United Federation of Planets’ endless wars and bloody conflicts with aliens. All of them are fought with photon torpedoes and phasers set to Kill! Ah well.

It’s strange that these wars should have slipped his mind, though. Consider he wrote that tweet before he revealed the Russians were behind a plot to discredit him with accusations of sexual harassment? So at this point he was still thinking clearly.

Phaser-control laws

Never mind all that. Can we, in this great democracy of ours, do what our celebrity leaders imagine? If so, the sought-for legislation will have to come about by vote. Congress will have to propose enlightened laws and then vote on them. If these congresspersons have their minds aligned with Progress, then they will vote the right way. And soon everyone will be free and there will be strict control of dangerous phasers.

Now that I think of it, does anybody know why it is that a gun — or phaser — is considered safe or moral in the hands of a government employee but unsafe or immoral in the hands of the civilian? And does that judgment only apply to our government, or to all governments?

Maybe this sentiment is why so many Millennials long for a return of communism. Stalin wannabes take note.

The Insanity Defense

Anyway, an obvious wrinkle in this scheme of perfection-by-vote did not occur to King or Takei. It’s that democracies have been known to go insane. Don’t forget, for instance, that in the USA the government voted a law into its very Constitution banning alcohol.

Presumably after developing a thirst, they changed their mind and voted to again allow alcohol.

At one time, our government created laws recognizing that holy matrimony was between a man and woman. And then, one day, it was discovered these previous laws were all wrong and that “marriage” could be between two men.

Make up your minds.

This schizophrenia has been noticed. Sheikh Assim Alakeem, a popular “on-line” imam who dispenses advice about Islam tweeted:

6-The laws in USA and UK are man made and have no value to Muslims! 50 years ago, it was a crime to be homosexual! Now, it is a crime to simply voice your opinion about it. What was moral back then is not necessarily moral today!

Alakeem is right. It’s hard to know where you stand when what was right yesterday is wrong today and might be right again tomorrow. The only way King and Takei’s scheme is going to work in a system like this is to convince everybody that the Supreme Authority is government.

Print Friendly
Comments ()
The Stream encourages comments, whether in agreement with the article or not. However, comments that violate our commenting rules or terms of use will be removed. Any commenter who repeatedly violates these rules and terms of use will be blocked from commenting. Comments on The Stream are hosted by Disqus, with logins available through Disqus, Facebook, Twitter or G+ accounts. You must log in to comment. Please flag any comments you see breaking the rules. More detail is available here.
  • Howard Rosenbaum

    Perhaps Mr Briggs satirical conclusion is the objective of the “one world government” folks.
    You know, you start w/open boarders & end w/a welfare state …

    • Andrew Mason

      I don’t think you could afford a welfare state with open borders. And I don’t recall Stalinist Russia being known for its gold plated social security system.

      • Howard Rosenbaum

        This nation , were it to become in some larger measurer than at present a welfare state, would inevitably place an intolerable burden upon it. As for Stalinist Russia not entirely unlike today, their economic challenges & fiscal irresponsibility helped set the precedent for misappropriation of gov’t spending …

        • By 2032, Social Security will take over half of all federal spending. By 2032, Medicare will take over half of all federal spending. By 2032, medicaid will take over half of all federal spending. By 2032, debt payments will take over half of all federal spending. By 2032, welfare will take over half of all federal spending. By 2032, ObamaCare will take over half of all federal spending.

          • Howard Rosenbaum

            Sounds a bit like a negative amortization loan that the government has been working with – only w/out the appreciating equity. Are those types of loans still available to citizens …?!

          • stan schmunk

            And your solution is? Be specific.

      • You’re right, we can’t. That hasn’t stopped us from doing it, harder and harder, for the last 50 years.

        The Soviet Union had gold-plated social security systems. The problem was that there was nothing under the gold plating. The problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people’s money. The real problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of food. The problem with socialism is that you have to kill millions to bring about the “worker’s paradise” of hell on earth, where every fifth person is a spy for the government, and there is nothing in the stores to buy with money that has been made worthless.

    • stan schmunk

      We don’t have ‘open boarders (borders) and no one wants them. And we aren’t a welfare state or anything close to it. Please stop posting FAKE NEWS.

      • There is no wall on our southern border, and a million people illegally cross into our country every year. That’s in addition to the nearly million legal immigrants. That’s kind of the definition of open borders.

        70% of the federal budget goes to welfare and debt payments. More people get money from the government than pay money into it. Entire families have lived for three generations on nothing but government handouts. That’s the definition of a welfare state.

        Facts and opinions you don’t like aren’t fake news. Here’s a free clue – socialism/communism have never worked, and will never work, because it’s a political/religious theory, and has no relation to economics. Economics is the study of supply and demand. Socialism is the denial of the existence of supply and demand; indeed, it denies the very existence of human nature.

        • stan schmunk

          There are 700 miles of walls and fences on our border. The one in San Diego, where I live, has been here for nearly 2 decades. The illegal immigration is at a wash. As the Mexican economy improves and ours totters there is no 1 million a year flood into our country. That’s a lie. As far as ‘welfare, research TANF and also research why some Americans get payments from the government. We’ve always operated under supply and demand. Slavery was supply and demand. Our drug problem is supply and demand as is our pornography problem. Your concern about illegals is supply and demand. All of our so-called socialist/communist programs have been into place by our fairly elected representatives. BTW, we need 300,000 workers just in the strawberry fields here in California. Get yourself and all your like-minded friends out here to help.

  • Ken Abbott

    Is Takei serious? He cites a fictional utopian “future” as a argument for his real-world progressive policy preferences. Unbelievable.

    • Andrew Mason

      Star Trek is the only place Socialism has worked well, possibly because very little is seen of the universe. If the society were really scrutinised perhaps it would be more akin to B5, or contemporary society albeit with advanced tech?

      • Ken Abbott

        From what I recall, the only hints of a less-than ideal society occurred in the second installment of the reboot movie series–a desperate father was willing to commit an act of sabotage in order to secure a supposed cure for his terminally-ill daughter. One can argue that the reboots are not Roddenberry canon, but from what I can tell the utopianist vision of the Great Bird of the Galaxy has become somewhat tarnished.

        • Nate Winchester

          You need to watch Deep Space 9.

          • Ken Abbott

            I have–in its original run, no less. But that series was less about the Federation and more about interspecies conflict on the frontier. You could almost call it the Wild West in space.

      • eddiestardust

        Please define Socialism. I just bet you think Social Security is but you are going to take it and benefit from it too. I will pray for you for because you haven’t figured out that when you accuse you are really accusing Christ.

        • Andrew Mason

          In the case of Star Trek there seems to be no medium of exchange. People simply use the energy they want, eat the food they want etc. How resources are controlled is never revealed. There is also no real suggestion that unemployment exists, but there is also no suggestion people need to work. TOS presents a somewhat rawer society – mining bases, colonies without food etc. By TNG Roddenberry was quite clear that religion, superstition, and mystical thinking were not to appear, and apparently even marriage was frowned on. The focus is on the paramilitary aspect of society – usually a Federation starship so it’s hard to be sure about the specifics, but it’s clearly not a capitalistic society. Remember the Ferengi are presented as bad guys and then morph into merely unpleasant.

          And no I don’t consider social security to be Socialism, at least not by itself. Socialism is control of the means of production. At a state level it usually overlaps with authoritarianism – defining what speech is permissible and which is prohibited etc.

          I really don’t get your point about accusing Christ. What does He have to do with Socialism?

          • Pete the Greek

            If someone were to make predictions on the outcome of a Star Trek universe, then the inescapable conclusion would be that the Ferengi would control the entire galaxy within a few decades. They were the only ones who understood commerce.

          • Nate Winchester

            See: the excellent episodes, “In the Cards” and “Faith, Hope, and the Great River.”

          • Social security is technically a Ponzi scheme. It’s only legal because it’s run by the government.
            If you don’t think social security and other forms of welfare are socialism, then try not paying your taxes. It won’t be long before government men with guns let you know who’s boss, and take the wealth by force. If you don’t believe that, try looking at what happens when the welfare checks are late. Take a look some time at the Democrat national party platform, and compare it to the platform of the Soviet Bolsheviks. See if you can find any points of difference between the two.

            Socialism, communism, and fascism all control the flow of wealth and production. They just go about it in slightly different ways. They all end at the same place – poverty, starvation, disease, and death. See, for example, modern Venezuela, the Cambodian killing fields, Soviet Ukrainian famine, China’s cultural revolution, Vietnam’s reeducation camps, The Berlin Wall, etc. Socialism murdered over 120 million of its own people in the last century.

  • notw

    For a group that consistently complains that you cannot legislate morality they sure do consistently try.

  • Patmos

    In the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.

    Beyond that, most modern US law seems to be loosely derived from the same mindset of eugenics, with the so called intellectual elites trying to fulfill the needs of their ego by wanting to rule over everything. In doing so they completely miss the point of this country, which in large part was created to thwart tyranny. So then with this mindset secular types waltz right back into slavery, by both creating a tyrannical system and by being slaves to their own desires.

  • GPS Daddy

    No

Inspiration
The Strangely Mysterious Beauty of Christmas
Tom Gilson
More from The Stream
Connect with Us