One must understand this occurred in the 1960s, before Kennedy's assassination, before Vietnam, before we lost the Constitution, when Republicans could still win in California, before the culminating legislation of the civil rights struggle. I was more than surprised when the academics around the conference table turned so vehemently against private property. Worse, they dismissed the idea out of hand as preposterous.
Appeals to authority, to the recognition of property rights in the Bill of Rights availed me nothing. I was young and dumb and full of earnestness so I actually thought that the discussion was about how a just American Republic emerged historically. It was intellectually bewildering. I did not know that the discussion was really about how to transform the established order to impose social justice.
If one concedes a place to private property on the scale of ordered liberty, one pretty much restricts the options of community organizers. So the attack on property began. Hypotheticals were reviewed going back to the late Middle Ages when wealthy landowners set snares to injure poachers. More recent cases involving shotguns rigged to shoot intruders entering abandoned mountain cabins were discussed. The right to invoke deadly force in defense of property as distinguished from the defense of one's person was analyzed. In each case it was solemnly concluded that the right to property was infinitely inferior to the right and need to preserve life.
Ah, the slippery slope.
Not long after this excursion into theory in the Academy I was exposed to the race riots of 1967 where the question of the defense of property became something more than academic. As America faced race riot after race riot with their unprecedented distruction of property, our society moved inexorably away from the protection of property and toward immunizing those who destroyed it. It is not necessary here rehearse all the rationalizations justifying this kind of appeasement, it is sufficient to say that they were all inherently Marxist.
To those who say that the George Zimmerman trial is of small importance and unworthy of the attention it is getting, I say it marks a watershed point from which history will say the left did to self-defense what it had done to property.
FISCAL V MORAL:
John Adams stated, our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other. He also said "the moment the idea is admitted into society that property is not as sacred as the law of God, and that there is not a force of law and public justice to protect it, anarchy and tyranny commence." What? Property is as sacred as anything else in the mind of a God fearing Founder? Thats what he said.
Translation: Property is what you receive in exchange for your God given time and talents, and therefore is the expression of the sanctity of life outside the womb, which like life inside the womb, is indeed sacred. It is the issue we all share, whether we realize it or not, because a loss of property means we lose everything else to tyranny by definition. You cant save a single unborn child if a bureaucrat or the taxman owns the fruits of your labor, and therefore owns you and your time. This is powerful common ground.
Politically, the establishment ignores the fact that Republicans win by running social conservatives. Social conservatives often ignore the fact that these candidates won by stressing other issues. Reagans foci were the greatness of the free market and the evils of the communism, though his intellectual consistency was morally based. The historic wins in 1994 and 2010 included mostly social conservative candidates, but neither election had an emphasis on social issues, other than the moral component of limited government.
In other words, what all of us have in common is an interest in property rights, regardless of what our individual hot button issues are. Social liberals are being naïve when they discount the fiscal cost of moral depravity, and social conservatives are naïve to ignore the moral cost of fiscal depravity. Pastors enjoying tax-exempt status are being hypocritical and intellectually bankrupt when they impugn fiscal only conservatives or sit out elections. The Bible talks a lot about the moral component of money, and even the atheist Ayn Rand recognizes it. We must all recognize it, or well have a nation with no morals and no money. And yet, this divide threatens our ability to ever beat the liberals.