You’re Not the Boss of Me

John W. Pinkerton

You’re not the boss of me.  I know that may deeply disappoint many of you, but you’re just not the boss of me.  You started trying to be the boss of me with the “Eighteenth Amendment” to the United States Constitution which  prohibited the manufacture, transportation, import, sale, and consumption of alcohol and alcoholic beverages.  How’d that work out for you?

Repealed in 1933, the supporters of prohibition, the bosses of everyone, cooled their heels for a few years.

With the coming of a more liberal attitude toward sex outside of marriage in the 60s, they came back in full force trying to shame people into abstaining from sex outside of marriage.  If you’re interested in lost causes, this is your best choice.  The crusade against sex didn’t exactly work out very well.  In hindsight, the bosses should never have chosen this battle.

Tobacco provided these same folks with an opportunity to be the boss of others once again.  Although they would like to ban the manufacture, transportation, import, sale and consumption of tobacco and tobacco products, they have had to settle for extreme taxation of tobacco products and limiting where folks can smoke.  I’m a smoker; I have been since I was eighteen.  Although I’m sure it hasn’t caused me to be healthier, I’m sure it has prevented me from shortening the lives of others.  The problem with the do-gooders of the world is that they don’t know when to stop.  When smokers were banned from public buildings, I shrugged my shoulders.  Even when it’s legal, I don’t smoke in restaurants out of courtesy to other patrons.  I realized there is no end to these zealots who want to be the boss of me when some government entities banned smoking in bars.  In bars?  You folks are nuts.  What is a smoky bar without smoke?  You folks can raise taxes on cigarettes as much as you like; you can prohibit my smoking in public settings, but I will continue to purchase and smoke cigarettes until I, not you, decide that I want to discontinue this behavior.  In other words, you’re still not the boss of me.

Because of its brevity, you may not even have noticed that when the folks who wanted to be the boss of everyone, bolstered by their limited success with restricting cigarette smoking, briefly went after the perfumes which women wear in public.  They claimed it was an infringement on the rights of those who in the proximity of the wearers of these perfumes  were caused to have allergic reactions.  This was a short lived effort.  Women beat these interlopers off with the fury of a woman wronged.  They retreated to their bunkers waiting for an easier target.

The latest interest of the bosses is their campaign to force folks to eat “healthier” foods.  Ronald McDonald is pictured as an icon of evil.  General Mills is depicted as a lieutenant of the Devil pitching harmful products to the the youths of America.  These do gooders claim to be saving us from ourselves by speaking knowingly about the evils of fatty food, sugary food, salty food; in other words, tasty food.  Some try to shame us into not eating meat by equating cows and chickens and turkeys to dogs and humans.  Although I would not eat my dog or your dog, I’ll continue to eat beef and chicken and, yes, turkeys when forced to.  The president’s wife preaches to all of us about eating more healthy diets.  She makes me miss Mrs. Johnson who just wanted us to plant wildflowers.  I strongly suspect that we’ll continue to eat what our palates want.  Give it up, bosses.

If I were run over by a truck load of burning marijuana, I wouldn’t know what hit me.   However, you bosses are causing me to take a closer look at possibly legalizing this illegal drug.  I’m pretty sure it would cause life threatening seizures among the bosses if it were legalized.    I think I’m willing to risk it.   Although I don’t have a dog in this fight, I’m beginning to question whether our “War on Drugs” has been worth our expenditure of money and energy to try to prevent folks from doing what they want to do and seem to be able to do in spite of governmental interference.   If you bosses want another loss in your ledger, just keep up your bossiness related to drugs.

In summary, if you bosses don’t want to drink, have sex, smoke, eat unhealthy food, wear loud perfume, and smoke marijuana, then don’t.  Just quit trying to be the boss of those of us who do.

Quite frankly, I know that I prefer the company of those who do like to drink alcohol until they’re tipsy, have sex until they can’t, smoke til they wheeze, eat fat foods til they pop, wear loud perfume til others tear up, and, yes, even those who hanker for the weed to those who don’t.  They may not be here as long as those who don’t, but while they’re here, they are far more interesting folks.

Those of you who are inclined to try to be the boss of me should relax, leave other folks alone, and tend to your own rat killing.  Accept it.  You’ll never be the boss of me.


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