The Deputization of America's Citizens
The American Government is conscripting the average citizen into its police force. This trend is extremely concerning as it gives the government the power to require that you carry out its political will, and that you require others to as well, whether it be a Republican agenda, a Democrat agenda, or another agenda.
The Biden Administration just issued rules related to Covid-19 protocols in large companies. It is important to look at the means it selected to do so.
The new rules do not say “anyone employed for a company with over 100 employees must have certain Covid-19 protocols in place.” If the rules did, the government would be the one that would have to go and find non-complying employees, and the government knows that it lacks the police power to go and check all employees’ status.
So, instead, the Federal Government radically expanded its police force and required that each company become a deputy officer. If the company isn’t willing to act as the police, the company will be fined. In many cities, if a company won’t act as the police for whatever rules the city has issued, the company will be shut down by the government.
The rules for large companies require that companies issue mandates and rules for its employees, and that it then enforce those as well.
This is very concerning for a number of reasons.
1. All companies and businesses are owned and operated by people. These people are being forced to do things they feel wrong about. Even if a business owner supports measures to curb Covid-19, many know it is wrong to force a medical choice on another person. No person should have to exchange their personal morality for the right to conduct, own, or operate a business.
2. If power exists, people will try to exploit it. The Founders knew this well, and so they created a system of checks and balances. One important check in the government is that it not have an extremely large police force, and this check occurs naturally as the government has to pay its own police or law enforcers. However, when the government can conscript whomever it wants to serve as police officers, it gains incredible power to carry out many laws that would have never been possible before, and it does so without paying a dime to its new police force. Slavery and indentured servitude were abolished for good reason, as those were extreme violations of natural rights and extreme abuses of government power. The government should never have the power to require that we work for it in times of peace.
3. When you have to act as a police officer, you can go to jail, be fined, or lose your livelihood – all over someone else’s actions. If a person walks into your business, and you didn’t check their card that day, you are in the hot seat, not because you did or engaged in any action that was wrong, but simply because you didn’t police as required. America has had a long tradition of not requiring people to act, as many court cases have recognized the extreme danger to liberty and society that comes by imposing duties on people to act. So, for example, if you see someone drowning, and you do not do anything, you will not go to jail for that (in the past at least). The courts recognized that it was wrong to make someone liable for not acting, as forcing people to act is a very different power than outlawing certain actions. But, in a world where you are the police, you will have to act. You have to step in to violent situations when a person is upset about you asking to see their card. You have to require people to do things that you are morally opposed to doing. You have to be eternally vigilant, or else you are the bad person, the one that will be fined and jailed. It won’t be the person without the card, it will be you.
4. Society falls apart when we all police each other. When everyone is a police officer, there is no trust among people. Trust is absolutely essential to a society working in any healthy manner. If we destroy trust by obligating people to report on other people, we will see incredibly negative effects pervade our society and economy. Families will break down, friendships will be ruined, and people will be left alone, without anyone to trust or anywhere to turn. Fear will pervade society to the point where it will be tangible in our associations with others.
While we have not conducted scientific studies on this, we predict that as the fear of each other sets in more and more, mental health will continue to plummet, anxiety and depression will continue to climb, suicides and shootings will continue to grow, and more violent outbursts in fairly normal daily interactions will be experienced. Implicit trust in each other is such a foundational aspect of the American way of life that destroying it will result in an entirely new society, one where the government becomes the sole source we turn to for help and relief, or one where the government assumes the levels of power that the Founders worked so hard to avoid.
While the Biden Administration’s recent rules forcibly conscript many new police officers, other aspects of American society do as well. Business owners are forced to be tax collectors in exchange for the basic right to conduct business. They have to collect sales tax and income tax for employees and remit it to the government. They are fined and burdened extensively if they fail to collect tax from others who are legally obligated to pay it. The cost of compliance is high for them to be tax collectors, but they have to bear that cost, or pass it on to the consumers to bear (thereby artificially inflating our costs for basic goods and services), to avoid going to jail or being shut down.
Additionally, cities, counties, and states are passing more and more requirements for businesses. Businesses have to act as immigration police, they have to act as health police, and current proposals in Congress will have them acting as retirement police as well, as Congress is considering mandating that businesses have to provide retirement accounts for employees as well.
It is high time for us as American citizens to start to push back on the deputization of the American citizen. The government should have no right to require any person to work for it during times of peace. This process is a complete subversion of all that the Constitution has worked to promote.
Don’t assume too that you are okay because you are not a business owner. As Covid-19 showed us, the government tested deputizing all of us. States, counties, cities, etc. shut down gatherings. Utah, for example, had a few weeks where it banned any group getting together of over 10 people. Many families in Utah exceeded the 10 person limit just based off of those living in their home (as many Utahns have large families). But, under such rules, individuals could be liable or responsible under the law if their neighbors came over to visit, for example, or if a group of 10 or more kids congregated in the streets together.
Additionally, political forces are working hard to make more and more people ‘mandatory’ reporters of things like child abuse, or health choices, etc. Teachers, doctors, pastors, etc. are being forced to report anything that ‘might’ be abusive, and relationships are becoming quite strained with positions that we used to trust. Child abuse is a serious problem, of course, but by mandating reporting of anything that might be abusive (or else the person that was supposed to report can be penalized), people do not have places or people to trust, and people do not have good means to enable them to properly work to get past problems.
There are many, many reports of child abuse that have been filed that are not child abuse. Parents with children with special needs find themselves being reported on by therapists for things as simple as having a special needs child that likes to hug people (as hugging, they say, is a possible sign that a child was molested).
We could go on and on about the issues, the effects on the clients we work with, and the effects on society as a whole, but the point is simply this – it is very wrong for America to force us to enforce its laws, act as a tax collector, or report on the people we interact with. We need to work hard to fight these encroachments on our freedoms and liberties. Government power must stay limited, or it will be significantly abused, and we will be without recourse or pushback when the government comes knocking on our door because we didn't turn our neighbors in for some violation of some law.
While we support good police officers and the work they do, it is imperative that we maintain a separation of powers. We, as citizens and business owners, are not the police, and we should work to avoid being required to be the police. It is high time that we step up and say 'no' to the government conscription of business owners and citizens in its police force.
The Believe Legal Institute is committed to building and preserving good in the world. As the United States Constitution has brought about an incredible amount of good, we work hard to help preserve it. If you have found yourself conscripted by the government to act for it, please reach out to us to discuss your situation.