Steven Hayward ~ The Liberty Forum ~ 5-12-2020
Why This Crisis is Like No Other
The COVID-19 crisis hit shockingly hard and fast, and has upended every aspect of our lives, not least our liberties. In much of the United States, it's no longer possible to eat at a restaurant, attend a sporting event, worship at a church, or visit a loved one at a nursing home. In a darkly ironic twist, we are releasing convicted criminals from prison but arresting lone surfers and parents whose only offense is to visit a park to play with their children. Our First Amendment right to peaceably assemble (just for grins, look up the definition of "inalienable") is but a memory.
We are told that it's for our safety, that to disobey is to risk spreading a relentless disease that ravages communities and kills indiscriminately.
The result is a crisis like none we have experienced in our lifetimes. It has been compared to a war, albeit against an invisible enemy and with an objective we haven't defined. We've spent trillions of dollars, shuttered thousands of businesses, and destroyed millions of jobs in the battle. Our great-grandchildren will be paying off the new debt we've incurred. Surely we are now mired in recession, if not a new Great Depression the likes of which we haven't seen since the 1930s.
UC Berkeley's Steven F. Hayward will share his thoughts on this unprecedented catastrophe.
Mr. Hayward is a Senior Resident Scholar at the Institute of Governmental Studies at UC Berkeley, and a visiting professor at the Goldman School of Public Policy. He was previously the Ronald Reagan Distinguished Visiting Professor at Pepperdine University’s Graduate School of Public Policy, and was the inaugural visiting scholar in conservative thought and policy at the University of Colorado at Boulder in 2013-14. From 2002 to 2012 he was the F.K Weyerhaeuser Fellow in Law and Economics at the American Enterprise Institute in Washington DC, and has been senior fellow at the Pacific Research Institute in San Francisco since 1991.
He writes frequently for the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, National Review, the Weekly Standard, the Claremont Review of Books, and other publications. The author of six books including a two-volume chronicle of Reagan and his times entitled The Age of Reagan: The Fall of the Old Liberal Order, 1964-1980, and The Age of Reagan: The Conservative Counter-Revolution, 1980-1989. His most recent book is Patriotism is Not Enough: Harry Jaffa, Walter Berns, and the Arguments That Redefined American Conservatism. He writes daily on Powerlineblog.com, one of the nation's most-read political websites.