Joshua Lawson explains in a Federalist column how real efforts to defund police would threaten “American lives, liberty, and property.”

Intimidated by an increasingly loud minority of the U.S. population, city councils across America are considering “defunding” their police forces. Such a proposal would have been dismissed as unconscionable not so long ago. Now, in the wake of George Floyd’s death, it’s being debated, in varying degrees, in cities from Dallas, to Chico, to Denver.

Lest the calls to “defund the police” be dismissed as hyperbolic, overheated posturing, The New York Times recently ran an op-ed by Project NIA director Mariame Kaba explicitly stating, “Yes, We Mean Literally Abolish the Police.” …

… Law-abiding ladies and gentlemen: now might be the time pack up and get out of Dodge — while you still have something left to take with you.

The Declaration of Independence proclaims the government of the United States was formed to secure our unalienable rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. It further states the right to organize a government in a manner “most likely to effect” the “Safety and Happiness” of its citizens. Without protections for these natural rights, little else in society matters, and all other activities of the state, no matter how well-intentioned or seemingly benign, are irrelevant and trivial.

The words penned by Thomas Jefferson were carefully chosen. While the Founders sought a new government with a higher priority on individual liberty than ever before, they knew they wanted a government. They did not declare the founding of an anarchist enclave, free of any mechanisms of the state. Any government, at its most minimal, must protect life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness or it is not worthy to wield the sole legitimate use of force granted by the consent of a free people.