Tuesday, November 16, 2010

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms

Also known as the BATF.

A while ago, a former co-worker of mine asked why it is necessary for this government agency to exist.

He (yes, typically, it was a he. And, naturally, he was a Repuglican) wondered why the need for a government agency existed to control 3 things that were all legal.

I've given it some thought since then.

It didn't take too long.

You see, Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms, three things that are completely legal, have annually accounted, directly or indirectly, for a total of nearly half a million American deaths every year. And they have done that by being used EXACTLY the way they were intended to be used.

It only makes sense that these three things should be under strict government control. And that there should be an agency that regulates that control. And of many more "legal" things. But in today's anti-government society, it will probably never happen.

This past election, the tsunami of Republicans that were swept into office were mostly elected by promising less government intrusion into the affairs of citizens. At a time when government, under the increasing influence of corporations, is ignoring the rights of citizens in favor of the rights of corporations, and when we can expect the newly elected Republican Congress to vote lock, stock, and barrel with what the corporations elected them to do, we can ill afford less government regulation.

Regulation by the government is the only way ordinary citizens can survive against the tyranny of big business. The sooner we all realize that, the safer we will all be.

If you ask me, there are a LOT of other legal things, substances, or actions that regularly kill hundreds of thousands of people that need their own controlling agencies and that will forever lack them.

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