COMMENTARY: Flat sales taxes fail to discriminate

The sensationalization of every anomaly by those calling themselves journalists keeps our population in a constant state of irrational fear; when the reality of our situation in actual statistics clearly demonstrates that we’re in the safest place in the world that we would want to be.

The average American child is five times more likely to die from a dog bite than from an abduction. The probability of a child being physically abused is less than half what it was just a generation ago, and child mortality rates have fallen 50% in the last 25 years. It is now safer to be a child in the USA than in any other place and time in human history.

Child and adolescent obesity have quadrupled. Our kids are in more danger of being taken by Child Protective Services than by strangers. If we want to protect our children from CPS, we must not allow them to be unsupervised at any moment.

We provide bussing or taxi our children to any destination. I well remember when we could play unsupervised and just be kids, and there were no nosey neighbors, cell phones or CPS to prevent us from burning those calories.

We do the same thing to adults; the TSA has not stopped a single terrorist plot in airports, yet we deny ourselves the rights of the Fourth Amendment while being molested by the TSA when trying to travel at a cost of $ 8 billion annually.

The failures of the TSA to protect us will guarantee that its programs will be expanded to all other areas of travel, because there’s nothing so successful as a failed government program.

We are bombarded with how we should be terrified of guns with accounts of horrific tragedies such as seen in Las Vas, Orlando, and Blacksburg; but the firearm homicide rate in the USA has fallen 50% over the past 20 years. The nonfatal firearm crime rate has fallen by 75%; and this isn’t because we’re getting rid of guns.

The number of guns per capita in the country has doubled in the last 50 years, and the number of people with concealed carry gun permits has risen 150% in the last ten.

We arrest over half million people per year for the possession of marijuana, even though that material doesn’t ruin lives.

What ruins lives is/are the police, courts and prisons when people use MJ. Compared to what the law will do to you, marijuana is incredibly safe.

According to the Center for Disease Control, over 2,000 people die each year from alcohol poisoning, 25,000 die from prescription drug overdoses, 5,000 die from cocaine, and 11,000 from heroin; None die from marijuana overdoses.

Are there not enough justified fears without inventing false ones? Should we spend billions on legislating against imaginary threats?

If we wiped out the ATF agency tomorrow, we would all sleep more soundly the next night, and our tax burden would decrease a bit. If we limited our fears to what is rational, most of government would disappear.

Jim N. Taylor is a local resident who is regularly published in the Valley Morning Star. He used Foundation for Economic Education and its contributors for their statistics cited in this commentary.