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Copyright © 2002 by Joe Freeman. All rights reserved.
How Much Does It Cost?
What do we expect when we say we live in a free country? We expect opportunities, support, safety, basic services, etc. Most of us expect all of the above and maybe even more. But can we expect our government to guarantee our safety? Can anyone ensure our safety at all times? Because we are a free nation, those who wish to cause us harm are able to use our freedom to accomplish their goals. The freedom we cherish as a nation, that we fought for and defended with the lives of generations past, also give our enemies the ability to create terror in our country.
We are hearing reports that the people who committed these acts lived among us and were trained in our country. That is because our freedoms extend to those who come to our shores seeking the opportunity that our freedom provides. Freedom in our country means the ability to share in the prosperity if you want to, to build a future, to provide for your family. That freedom is what draws people from all over the world that want to be citizens in our country. We will never be able to determine the real intent of everyone who comes to our shores, but that does not mean we should refuse anyone entry into our land of opportunity.
Are we willing to give up some of our freedom to ensure safety? I donít think that is what the founding fathers had in mind when they created this nation. They realized then that what we call freedom would require a sacrifice from our citizens to gain freedom and just as importantly, retain that freedom. We may give up some conveniences (not freedom), such as parking next to an airline terminal or checking baggage at the curbside. But we must never surrender the basic freedom to travel at will, or any other freedom.
The price we must pay for this freedom is the vulnerability of our nation. The price we must pay for freedom is the knowledge that someone can cause us harm with no warning and for no good reason. There can be no guarantee of the safety of our citizens. The only other option is to curtail or limit the freedom we cherish. If we do that - those who committed these acts will have achieved their goal.

As human beings, we are endowed with freedom of choice,
 and we cannot shuffle off our responsibility
 upon the shoulders of God or nature.
 We must shoulder it ourselves.
 It is up to us.