Vote3rdpartynow Makes the Case For Liberalism and Against Strict Construction

Before getting the facts and editing his/her post, including the headline of the whole post, user Vote3rdpartynow was in a huff that cops allegedly shut down a kid’s lemonade stand.

As V3PN summarized:

The details – a 12 year old sets up a lemonade stand with the help of his mother and sister.  The mother goes inside to make lunch for the sister, and upon returning finds that the state police have shut down the lemonade stand.

Why was the lemonade stand shut down?  V3PN quotes the victim’s guardian:

because this [the lemonade stand] required a permit, and my stepson did not have a permit to sell drinks.

The law requires purveyors of beverages to have a permit to sell those beverages.  That’s the law.  Of course, conservatism requires strict construction of the law.  No activist interpretations.  Law & order.  That’s conservatism.

V3PN continued:

The second question is – Is someone really concerned that the kids might make a few bucks without having to pay income taxes on it?  Or is someone really concerned that the kids are going to spike the lemonade with some kind of poison that only a registered/licensed lemonade stand could detect?  Or is someone afraid the lemonade may have trans fats?  What exactly is the problem that makes someone think that hassling little kids is okay in the name of liberalism?

V3PN, desperate to make “liberals” the boogeyman in the situation, asks why hassling little kids is “okay in the name of liberalism”.  However, just because V3PN types something like “in the name of liberalism” doesn’t make it so.

Why was the little kid hassled?  Because the law required purveyors of beverages to have a permit.  And strict construction requires strict, word-for-word interpretation with no discretion.  Conservatism required the cops (or whoever it was – apparently DCR) to shut down the little kid’s lemonade stand.  At least, that’s when you use “facts” and rely on the correct definitions of “words.”  “Conservative” and “liberal” do not mean “good” and “bad,” respectively.  Those polysyllabic words have actual meanings.  And, because conservatism includes strict construction of laws, conservatism required the cops or whoever to shut down the little kid’s lemonade stand.

Liberalism allows for common sense to be injected into situations – or, as conservatives frequently call it in fits of paranoia, “activist judges” and whatnot.  Liberalism allows for looser construction of laws to fit reality.  Liberalism would allow a police officer or DCR employee to make a distinction between a restaurant/bar/street vendor/kiosk and a little kid selling ten-cent cups of lemonade on his or her front lawn.  Liberalism allows for that cop to use due discretion and not hassle the kid running the lemonade stand.

That’s why “strict construction” doesn’t always work and why liberalism can be, and often is, a more reliable, more efficient, fairer, and more effective way to govern and execute laws instead of conservatism.

I’d like to thank V3PN for making such an effective case against strict construction in interpreting and executing laws and for making such a strong and effective case for liberalism.  Well done, V3PN.

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