Now that lifestyle and political affiliation correlate so closely, it’s awfully easy to taunt the “enemy” by waving a few cultural banners in their faces—or by putting legislation to partisan use. Why run afoul of protections for free speech, thought, and assembly when you can just torment people by piling restrictions on the things they enjoy in life? You can camouflage the targeting as a policy dispute, even though your teammates nudge-and-wink understand that it’s all about sticking it to the latte-sippers or bitter clingers.
Weaponized law. How can that go wrong?—except in every conceivable way.
A little cultural flag-waving is just fine, but it emphasizes very real tribal divisions that raise the stakes in policy disagreements. Law is too dangerous a tool to leave in the hands of opposing tribes who just want to use it to bludgeon one another.
April 25, 2017
When Laws Become Partisan Weapons
[It’s an escalating process. Each side wanting revenge for the wrongs they have suffered at the hands of their political opponents. This is another justification for strictly limiting the powers of government to the essential services which cannot be practicably supplied by private enterprise.—Joe]