"If we make peaceful revolution impossible, we make violent revolution inevitable."
All we want is to be left alone. I know that's all I want, and I keep hearing my friends say the same thing. Just leave us alone, and we'll leave you alone. As long as neither of us commits an act of aggression, that's the way to treat each other. That seems fair enough to me.
Why can't you live that way, too?
Mr. IRS: I've never tried to force you to become an artist; why try to bring the might of the U.S. government to force me to be a bookkeeper? (A job I assure you I'm utterly unsuited for--And you ask me to pay for the privilege, besides!)
Ms. ATF: I don't go to your house and tell you which guns you can own. So why come to my friends' houses and tell them?
Mr. FBI: I've never investigated your bloody background. I could, in fact, care less about it. So why any interest in mine? Have you ever seen me do anything harmful? I think not. I'm dull as ditchwater -- except for my ideas. Wouldn't it be a more interesting challenge for you to track down some slithering, devious serial killer? Or maybe a crooked politician?
Mr., Mrs. and Ms. Federal Alphabet Soup: Don't you have something better to do with your life than go snooping into other peoples' business? Than ordering other people around? Than shooting people in their beds or burning them in their churches? Than gleefully enforcing obscure paperwork regulations that no sensible person would ever bother with? Go away! Go get yourself a job making something or building something or helping people who want to be helped. Hey, if you like the law enforcement business, go catch yourself a bad guy -- you know, somebody who victimized another person through force or fraud. But go do something useful and productive.
And if you still want to hang around Wolfe's Lodge, at least use the time to learn a little about the meaning of freedom.
Oh, you're not likely to do that, are you? Well, since it's certain you're going to pursue whatever unwholesome business you came here to pursue, there's nothing I can say that will really make any difference.
But just know this. I am a free human being. Very simply that. I will live my life, peacefully, as I see fit. If, in so doing, I bump up against some silly regulation or some "land-mine law" I've never heard of (or some law I've heard of, but is too patently absurd to take seriously), so be it. If you get your jollies busting people who violate some obscure diktat even you don't fully understand, I pity you.
But no matter what you do, I will be free.
I will be free if I rot in your prisons.
If you ruin my reputation before the public, I will still be free in my heart. If you seize everything I own, I will be free by owning nothing.
If you kill me, my written words will still burn with life.
You can't change that if you bury me under every law book and regulatory excrescence in the country.
And what's really wonderful is that every day, through your very own abuses and intrusions, you yourselves create 10,000 more as fiercely, stubbornly determined as I.