Libertarian Precepts and Subversive Realities
Some Lessons Learned in the School of Experience
A new feeling of confidence about civil liberties is in the air, an invigorating sense that we are emerging from a dark alley and can see the familiar, well-lighted streets just ahead. Several related developments have brought this about.
There was the Senate’s condemnation of McCarthy, by which the accredited spokesmen for American conservatism, after far too long a silence, re-pledged their allegiance to Constitutional morality. There were the 1954 Congressional elections, in which the victories of Senators Clifford Case, James Murray, and Joseph O’Mahoney, and the defeat of Representative Kit Clardy, seemed to indicate that the injection of a “Red issue” can no longer send the electorate into a frightened stampede. At the community level, concern has spread that our civil freedoms may have been manhandled these past years; this concern is typified by the League of Women Voters’ sponsorship of Freedom Agenda, a project for the discussion of civil liberties in thousands of local communities across the nation. Finally, with the relaxation of international tension and the need to reshape our foreign policy for the long-haul, there has also come a feeling that at home, too, we might reconsider the crash-program concept of internal security and consider a longer-haul analysis.
About the Author