Our Jim Glynn’s Jan. 5 piece, “Time for a 2nd Bill of Rights?” certainly captured my interest. At first I thought it must be April 1. Then, I thought it was a tongue-in-cheek piece. After reading it twice and skimming through it a half dozen times, I decided to go to the Internet and look at the whole speech; FDR’s 1944, State of the Union Message.
The last 1/5, the social engineering presentation, sounds well and good and I believe these are great goals. But, how could we possibly afford the governmental cost to accomplish these rights, these entitlements? As soon as you codify an entitlement, the government has to provide assurance that entitlement is secured. Entitlement by definition is a government program providing benefits to members of a specific group. His eight rights encompass every need in life except God.
FDR stated, “As our nation has grown in size and stature, however — as our industrial economy expanded — these political rights (provided in the Bill of Rights) proved inadequate to assure us equality in the pursuit of happiness.
“Proved inadequate to assure us equality in the pursuit of happiness?” Equality in the pursuit of happiness is something that even God doesn’t promise. How could a government? And, what human can quantify and qualify happiness? Certainly, the government can’t; even with another million employees.
We should be happy FDR’s 2nd Bill of Rights never came to being. Can you even imagine how large and overpowering our government would need to be, “to assure us equality in the pursuit of happiness.” Think — “1984” or “THX1138.”
Another telling element, or lack thereof, in FDR’s speech is that there is no “Thank you” and “God Bless America” at the end of the speech. Why, in the middle of a war, no God Bless America? All would do well to read the speech.
And, sorry, no “Third Bill of Rights.” Utopia is not possible.