Monday 23 November 2015

Liberty In The House

Last month I highlighted an event in the House of Commons scheduled for this week. You can read how it came about here.
I’m delighted to say that, in response to the growing attempts to tell people what they can and cannot smoke, vape, drink and eat, that Conservatives for Liberty will be holding a lobby evening of parliament called Forgive us our Trespasses: The moral case for choice and responsibility. It takes place on Wednesday, November 25, from 6.30pm to 8.30pm, and for those who attend, you will have the chance to hear from seven MPs and peers, outlining their belief in individual choice.  
The lobby will firmly defend the principle of freedom of choice which, as a Conservative who believes very strongly in liberty, I believe leads to the greatest prosperity for all. The lobby will defend freedom of choice by arguing that adults should be free to weigh pleasure and risk and decide for themselves when it comes to products such as cigarettes, e-cigarettes, alcohol, and fatty or sugary foods.
Organised by Con4Lib, this is now nearly upon us and will be held in one of the Committee rooms on Wednesday night. More details have now been released. There will be six speakers, five of them MPs which is very encouraging.

I don't know how many places might remain but if you are in or around London that evening and have left it late, email, get yourself on the guest list and I'll see you there.

If not, there is good advice as to what you can do in support of the cause from Con4Lib's communications to attendees.
We want to highlight to MPs there is a groundswell of opinion in favour of freedom of choice and against unnecessary and unjustified state intrusion into individuals' lives when it comes to decisions about eating, drinking, smoking and vaping. 
We are encouraging people who believe in freedom of choice to write to their MP. This is important because MPs always receive letters and emails in favour of restrictions on lifestyle freedoms (mostly from state-funded pressure groups - DP), and fewer in opposition. We believe it is time for the silent majority to find their voices.
This is a good point very well made. Prohibitionists will always be front and centre in attacking the liberties of others, as George Ade once observed about the disastrous policy of Prohibition in 1920s USA.
"The non-drinkers had been organising for fifty years and the drinkers had no organization whatsoever. They had been too busy drinking"
Consumers - who outnumber prohibitionists quite comfortably in every policy area - are generally too busy in their everyday life to contact representatives about how their lives are run, and it's easier to ask for a ban on something (especially if you're being paid to do so) than to ask for MPs to leave us all alone.

But it's something we all need to do, and it can make MPs sit up and take notice. Politicians will calculate that if they receive a letter, probably another 100 of their constituents will feel the same. One MP once said if he received five personally written letters from constituents in one week on a single issue, it would prompt a policy meeting in his constituency office.

So, if you're not coming on Wednesday,  do consider lending your support by finding your MP here and telling him/her why you think this is an important concept.

If nothing else, use the very apt event hashtag #LeaveUsAlone on social media as and when you feel like it. Often.

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