Personal Liberty Poll
The elected class of Virginia’s most populous county is considering banning frequent and large gatherings at neighborhood homes by establishing zoning ordinances that place limits on “group assemblies.”
The ordinance, which is being discussed today in Fairfax, Va., would limit gatherings at residences to 49 people a day and allow no more than three such gatherings within any 40-day period. County Supervisor Pat Herrity says the ordinance is a lawsuit waiting to happen.
According to county “officials,” numerous complaints are lodged about group meetings in homes. Herrity says that by “numerous,” those “officials” mean six in the past year.
The ban would affect church groups, scouting organizations, family birthday parties and reunions, and even sports fans gathering to watch the next “big game.” Realtors fear it will also result in fines for them for holding open houses.
This is an egregious assault on property rights and the right to assembly. It is also another example of the tyranny of the minority.
Governments are instituted to protect private property and individual rights, as James Madison pointed out in his “Essay on Property.” He wrote: “Government is instituted to protect property of every sort; as well that which lies in the various rights of individuals, as that which the term particularly expresses. This being the end of government, that alone is a just government which impartially secures to every man whatever is his own.”
Arthur Lee of Virginia wrote in 1775 that right of property is essential to liberty. “The right of property is the guardian of every other right, and to deprive the people of this, is in fact to deprive them of their liberty.”
Unfortunately, courts are run by government employees who routinely rule in favor of government over the individual, as Michael Salman (and many others) have learned over the years. Salman, a Phoenix pastor, served 60 days in jail for holding Bible studies at his home that were deemed by the city a violation of various codes and zoning regulations.
Of course, property rights are virtually nonexistent anymore. No one owns property free and clear because an annual ransom (property taxes) must be paid to the king or the king will snatch said property and deed it to his friends. This has given rise to the belief by the king that he owns and, therefore, controls what you can and can’t do on your property. And when the king assumes such power, he believes he is then empowered to deprive you of your liberty in every way he desires.