Every single day in Illinois and across our nation there are terrible auto crashes in which Americans are killed or maimed and cars are either crumpled beyond recognition or at the very least put out of commission.

Repairs must be made. Bodies must heal. And to move that process along insurance companies return phone calls and promise buckets of money.

I have no quarrel with the victims’ good fortune—though to call them victims gives you a peek at my innate generosity: if they’d been a little more careful, those “victims” might have stayed safe and sound. Far from me to deny that an element of luck is involved in all human affairs, but I drive carefully and haven’t had an “accident” in years.

I’m just saying . . .

My objection is this: why should I have to pay for their accidents?

As former congressman Joe Walsh bluntly tweeted, in response to Jimmy Kimmel’s heart-tugging story of a newborn son with a diseased heart, “Sorry Jimmy Kimmel: your sad story doesn’t obligate me or anybody else to pay for somebody else’s health care.”

And it’s not just health care that’s completely unjust. I buy liability auto insurance every year because the state of Illinois says I have to. This involuntary obligation simply raises the pile of money from which my insurer peals off the bills that assuage the feelings of other people who didn’t bother to avoid the accidents I avoid.

How do I avoid them? Well, not to brag, but I believe a clean mind in a clean body has something to do with it. On the interstates, where the most sensational mayhem happens, I used to be a safer driver going 80 mph than other drivers going 60; now that my eyes are almost shot, I’m a safer driver going 45.

Cars pass me right and left and I can’t believe how reckless other drivers are.

One word sums up the conditions that we responsible drivers must face daily:


We are told how fast to drive and what lanes to drive in—and even which way! We are told when to stop and when to go. We are told to yield! Some turns are allowed and others forbidden—we have no say in these decisions but are expected to docilely respect them. It can at least be said of the Affordable Care Act, which the Republican Party intends to show the door, that although it puts its hand in our pockets to pay for other people’s comas and fractures, it thinks those people can drive to the doctor on their own.

Big government doesn’t think anyone can drive anywhere on their own. Every single block brings a new dictate. Dissenters are shown no mercy.

The Founding Fathers could not have imagined the level of subservience we’ve been conditioned to put up with. Once the Republicans are done with health care we can only hope they carry the same logic and principles into battle against the “rules” of the road. Drive free or die, I say. Are cars any less worthy an expression of our God-given freedoms than guns?