Live Free Or Die

by Don Boudreaux on August 19, 2010

in Civil Society, Nanny State, Taxes

Here’s a letter to the Baltimore Sun:

Vincent DeMarco thinks that among the justifications for Maryland’s ‘sin taxes’ on cigarettes and alcohol is the fact that they “save lives” (Letters, August 19).

Let’s grant that these taxes do, in fact, extend Marylanders’ life-expectancies.  So what?  The lives of individuals are the property neither of any government nor of officious “public interest” groups such as the one that Mr. DeMarco leads.  The life of each individual Marylander belongs to that individual.  If he or she chooses to endure a higher statistical chance of dying sooner rather than later in order to enjoy smoking, drinking, hang-gliding, or gulping down gasoline it is no business of the state or of the likes of Mr. DeMarco and other busybodies.

Don’t forget that Maryland’s ringing motto is “The Free State” – not “The Long Life-Expectancy State.”

Sincerely,
Donald J. Boudreaux

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