Welcome to “Our Liberty…” and thanks very much for deciding to take a look!
Before I get underway, I want to express my sincere appreciation to LBPOST Publisher Shaun Lumachi for giving me this incredible opportunity to share my views with you in this way as well as to Managing Editor Ryan ZumMallen, in advance, for all of the guidance I am certain to need as I move out of the more comfortable realm of the active observer and into the far less familiar territory of participant advocate. I want to assure both them and you, our readers, that I will do everything in my power to keep this column as interesting, entertaining, thought-provoking, contemporaneous and relevant to life in Long Beach, as is humanly possible.
First and foremost:
I’m here to learn: from you, our readers; from my colleague columnists and from the editorial and publishing staff here at LBPOST. I feel strongly that we all have something to offer one another both in knowledge and in understanding and that encouraging and engaging in honest, respectful discourse are the best ways to help that learning along. I’m a big fan of the Socratic method of philosophical and intellectual inquiry, that is, I like to ask questions and as I post my periodic columns, I encourage you to do the same. Let’s question and challenge one another at every opportunity, but let’s do our best to remain both intellectually honest and personally respectful and always try to check our respective egos at the door.
A little about me:
I’m a Long Beach native and although I have lived in many places around the world Long Beach will always be home. I’m 49, married to a most incredible lady and a father of 4, two of whom are grown and on their own. We live with our dog and cat right here in the International City. My wife and I both work in Long Beach (I work for the City) and our entire family does a lot of community-based volunteer work. We strongly believe that as we are blessed, so we should bless others and we try to walk that walk as much as possible. I’m a political…that is to say…a governmental conservative…a little “r” republican. Those of you who have read my numerous comments and letters to the editor both here and elsewhere will not be particularly surprised by this disclosure. It is this predominantly conservative political ideology that forms the basis for my views and my advocacy in the areas of public policy and self-government and which will be the underlying theme for a good deal of my columns here.
Where we’re headed:
My intent with this column is to discuss and consider all aspects of our liberty as it is impacted at the federal, state and local levels. Almost everything we do, both as individuals and collectively, as a society, has impacts upon our liberty. These impacts can be positive and expansive, or negative and restrictive or sometimes both concurrently. These impacts upon our liberty, and how we react or do not react to them, in turn manifest themselves in the various directions our public policies take. It is these public policies that, in part, ultimately define us as a free people in a democratic society.
As to my column’s title: “Our Liberty…” is a reference to a Thomas Jefferson quote found in a letter he wrote to Dr. James Currie in 1786:
“Our liberty depends on the freedom of the press, and that cannot be limited without being lost.”
Besides the obvious intent to reinforce the critical importance of independent news media sources like LB Post, this title also addresses one of the topics I am most passionate about…our liberty; our freedom and rights but, more importantly, our responsibilities, as self-governed people living in a free society and a Constitutional Republic.
Please join me as we begin to take a closer look at “Our liberty…” and to discuss why I believe it is so critically important that we work tirelessly to increase and to preserve it.