MORRISON: Your Rights Are At Stake While Your Representatives Deliberate

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

OPINION - By Joyce Morrison (

"No man’s life, liberty or property is safe when legislature is in session." -Mark Twain

Congress is in session in every state and in Washington, D.C. They are addressing almost identical legislation, much of which will bring undue regulations to our life, liberty and property. Between state and federal legislation, no part of our lives will be left unturned.

Legislators will be looking at Smart Growth, Sustainable Development influenced legislation--based upon the United Nations Agenda 21--and they won’t even know it.

A lot of these measures deal with community comprehensive planning and control of water through watersheds along with appropriations for open space. Certainly not to be forgotten are education and privacy acts. If legislation isn’t passed, they will back door their goals through agencies such as EPA.

Our elected officials continue to lose power to boards and appointed councils of non-government organizations (NGOs) and the bureaucrats.

Illinois legislators will be dancing around with wetlands bills again this year with two bills in the Senate and one in the House. These bills will inflict severe penalties to property owners who disturb isolated wetlands on their own property.

Malaria afflicted 515 million people in 2002 up from 273 million cases in 1998 according to the World Health Organization.

Although the Malaria reported was in Africa, if we continue to add more wetlands based on the treaty signed in Ramsar, Iran, we could also see this mosquito carried disease here in the USA. DDT is no longer around to kill off the mosquitos breeding in “wetlands.”

Southern counties in Illinois don’t need to compromise on this Chicago driven wetlands bill. We need to trash it. Chicago is exempt from the proposed bills.

I recently read the following statement and although I am not a member of the John Birch Society, I had to agree with what founder Robert Welch said:

I want for our country enough laws to restrain me from injuring others, so that these laws will also restrain others from injuring me. I want enough government, with enough constitutional safeguards, so that this necessary minimum of laws will be applied equitably to everybody, and will be binding on the rulers as well as those ruled.

Beyond that I want neither laws nor government to be imposed on our people as a means or with the excuse of protecting us from catching cold, or of seeing that we raise the right kind of crops, or of forcing us to live in the right kind of houses or neighborhoods, or of compelling us to save money or to spend it, or of telling us when or whether we can pray.

I do not want government or laws designed for any other form of welfarism or paternalism, based on the premise that government knows best and can run our lives better than we can run them ourselves. And my concept of freedom, and of its overwhelming importance, is implicit in these aspirations and ideals.

Another Illinois bill we should try to pass is the Recreational Use Act defeated last year by trial lawyers.

A Supreme Court ruling says the landowner is responsible if someone is accidentally injured on their property while hunting, fishing, sleigh riding or enjoying some other recreational activity. This means your friends and family.

The only relief from this liability is “if you open your property to the public.” Now that is a scary thought. Will we become like Norway and Sweden and now England where your property must be open to the public to treat as their own?

If you live in the city, but have friends in the country who let you enjoy recreation on their property, don’t be surprised if they tell you “no,” they can’t afford to take the chance.

Help fight this ridiculous Supreme Court ruling by supporting the legislation in the House and Senate that will bring protection from liability to the land owner so he can share with others the recreational uses of his property.

A new nightmare is on the scene. The Wild and Scenic Rivers HB 634 sponsored by State Representative Jack Franks (D-McHenry), will bring the horrors other states have been facing when they enacted this globally inspired legislation.

"Introducing wild and scenic is like cancer. And I think it's going to spread," said Chuck Dudley, the natural resources chairman of the Yolo County Farm Bureau(California).

The bill, which was introduced last month, is supported by groups such as Friends of the River, Sierra Club Yolano Group and Yolo Audubon. In addition to the Yolo County Flood Control and Water Conservation District, its opposition includes the Yolo County Farm Bureau and the Family Water Alliance. Those opposed to the bill say “it serves the interests of a small group of environmentalists and could hinder farmers' access to water.”

The California bill is supported by groups such as Friends of the River, Sierra Club Yolano Group and Yolo Audubon.

Each year some kind of gun control bill is in the hopper. Kentucky and Missouri have passed “right to carry” laws and apparently they have not suffered any ill effects. The bad guy will always “carry” whether it is legal or not. Since when did the criminal worry about “abiding by the law?” Why shouldn’t the innocent guy have equal advantage?

The Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) is back in Illinois. How many of you parents are ready to have your daughters drafted if the draft is ever brought back? Same sex marriage would no doubt become a major issue. Is this another piece of legislation the trial lawyers will love? It is anticipated that all kinds of law suits could result from ERA.

Find out what legislation will add more controls to your life and then make calls to your legislators before you wonder what it was that made such a mess. It just might be you didn't do your part.

While we divide issues into gun rights, social issues, health and welfare, military, property rights, at the basis of all rights is the rights we have in the United States to be sovereign (self governing).

We should not fall victim to the outside influences of the global treaties giving our rights and freedoms to a global governance.

© 2005 -- all rights reserved


What are your thoughts concerning the issues raised in this commentary? Write a letter to the editor at, and include your name and town

Joyce Morrison lives in southern Illinois. She is a chapter leader for Concerned Women for America and she and her husband, Gary, represent the local Citizens for Private Property Rights. Joyce is Secretary to the Board of Directors of Rural Restoration/ADOPT Mission, a national farm ministry located in Sikeston.

She has become a nationally-recognized advocate for property rights.


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