1984 was meant as a warning, not an instructional manual
Democratically elected governments in western nations are becoming increasingly authoritarian, a festering menace that needs to be controlled sooner rather than later.
As 2020 comes to be a close and the world reflects on such a turbulent, stressful year, unless you’ve been paying zero attention — or swallowed the propaganda perpetuated by the media hook, line, and sinker — you’ve likely noticed that governments in the Free World in many cases have acted more like their counterparts in authoritarian regimes such as China, Russia, and Iran, as opposed to what those in a western liberal democracy should act like.
It’s truly a sad state of affairs when a growing majority of ordinary people who’ve been entrusted to take care of the best interests of their fellow countrymen and women abuse the power bestowed upon them and have a cavalier attitude about our civil liberties, inalienable rights and freedoms our ancestors were willing to spill rivers of blood to preserve.
71 years ago, iconic British author George Orwell penned a disturbing work of fiction titled 1984 that has been used as a warning ever since regarding how free societies who let their guard down and become complacent about their rights can find themselves waking up one morning in a state that no longer adheres to the rule of law, where privacy is a distant memory, and government agents (the police and military) act like the Nazi thugs my grandfather fought against in the Second World War.
If you are in any way concerned about the state of freedom in the West — not to mention a frightening democratic deficit — you might be tempted to believe that these wannabe dictators — who we elected to represent us — have interpreted 1984 as an instructional manual. Although common-sense safety measures had to be taken, politicians have used the COVID-19 pandemic as an excuse to go hog wild trampling over our freedoms as if they were an impediment to their lust for absolute power, forcing small business owners out of a living, using law enforcement to police human behavior, and setting up a massive surveillance state all in the name of protecting public safety.
Some jurisdictions in the United States, Canada, and elsewhere who implemented 14-day mandatory quarantine measures (even when an individual failed to test positive for this virus) also mandated that those who were forced at gunpoint into two weeks of house arrest without charge or any due process must allow themselves to be tracked 24/7 via their cellular phones. While some governments truly had good intentions by taking these measures, as another British author (Samuel Johnson) once stated, ‘The road to Hell is paved with good intentions.” What I’m most concerned about — and no doubt you share my sentiments — is that once this pandemic has subsided — our governments who, if left unchecked, will be more dangerous than any virus, will continue to wantonly violate our rights, including privacy.
In the past, dictators who had, if you will, a god complex have taken especially harsh measures against people of religious belief, often persecuting Christians. Over the past year, state and provincial governments — while allowing hundreds of people to wander aimlessly through big box stores — have dropped the hammer on church services, sometimes fining pastors or even blocking parishioners from entering their places of worship.
This frightening violation of religious liberty took place in my home country of Canada recently. During the Christmas holidays, the traditional period when approximately 2.168 Christians worldwide celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, Aaron Rock, pastor of Harvest Bible Church in Windsor, Ontario, was charged for violating the province’s COVID-19 lockdown rules.
Just over 3,000 kilometers away, in the capital of Canada’s oil and gas industry, a particularly overzealous female member of the Calgary Police Service sought to use rather brutal force on a young man named Ocean Wiesblatt. His crime — playing hockey on an outdoor rink. When Ocean refused to stop his imaginary crime, the officer yelled “Get on the ground, before a f****ing Taser you.”
Like many other people, no doubt you’re shocked speechless, but also want to ask the burning question: “How exactly did this come to be?”
There is no definitive answer, although it is painfully obvious that as societies become more prosperous, people become comfortable and often don’t think much about what previous generations had to suffer and persevere through to have freedom, save for what they watch on fictional Netflix shows or epic films such as Braveheart.
Another factor is the rise of socialism in western countries. Whereas in past eras people relied on private charities and the free market for services, over the past 60 years, the State has become so entrenched in our day to day lives that so many people view big government in a favorable light. There is a famous quote by former American president Ronald Reagan: The nine most dangerous words in the English language are: “I’m from the government, and I’m here to help.”
Throughout history, bloodthirsty tyrants have first disarmed their populaces before committing atrocities against them, which coincides with the fact that generally, the only way people have been able to win back their freedoms is through force.
Finally, if you happen to believe that gun control is all about public safety, I seriously suggest you take some time to study history because as we watch this train in slow motion, history is quickly beginning to repeat itself.
Chris McGarry is a professional freelance writer. He uses his expert knowledge, skills, and personal experience in writing about such topics as real estate, travel, fitness, politics, and digital marketing to create innovative, entertaining, and engaging content for his clients. He writes for Medium, TravelPlus, ThriveGlobal, The Canadian Firearms Journal, and more. His specialty is writing articles and books as well as copywriting and editing and proofreading.