Walk the Halls and/or Grab Your Ankles

By: T F Stern
T F Stern’s Rantings

The Texas Locksmith Association’s president, Steven Sharp, sent an invitation to all locksmiths to attend an event in Austin, Walk the Halls. I got my notification via the Greater Houston Locksmith Association, of which I am a member in good standing and in spite of being in opposition to their close association with Associated Locksmiths of America.

The letter expressed the importance of meeting with State Senators and Representatives in order to “make Texas safer,” supposedly through better legislative efforts established upon sound input from individual locksmiths.

It has been my experience that individual locksmiths expressing concerns regarding the locksmith industry to those who claim to be our representatives has been an utter waste of time and effort.

Please define “make Texas safer” in terms which don’t continue to erode individual rights. The locksmith industry has been hammered into submission by well meaning locksmith association representation all in the name of making Texas safer.

“Most of the major ills of the world have been caused by well meaning people who ignored the principle of individual freedom, except as applied to themselves, and who were obsessed with fanatical zeal to improve the lot of mankind-in-the-mass through some pet formula of their own…the harm done by ordinary criminals, murderers, gangsters, and thieves is negligible in comparison with the agony inflicted upon human beings by the professional ‘do-gooders,’ who attempt to set themselves up as gods on earth and who would ruthlessly force their views on all others.” (Henry Grady Weaver, The Mainspring of Human Progress pg 40-41)

Quoting from the original mission statement of the Department of Public Safety/Private Security Board (DPS/PSB), the sole reason for licensing locksmiths was, “ensuring citizens and consumers of investigations and security services, that these industries provide reliable services, employ qualified and trustworthy personnel and are free from misrepresentation and fraud.”

The short version, “make Texas safer.” Thank you very much; but Texas locksmiths have had about all the government help we can handle. Locksmiths no longer control their businesses; the bureaucrats in Austin run the show now and these pencil pushers continue to come up with ways to further remind individual locksmiths that Austin, not the individual locksmiths, control nearly every aspect of the industry.

A couple of years back the president of the Texas Locksmith Association stood before the DPS/PSB and suggested they make Texas safer by doubling the mandated hours of required continuing education for those already licensed. Well, wasn’t that thoughtful; have locksmiths waste more time and money taking classes in order to maintain a license they’ve already obtained to prove to the pencil pushers, “…that these industries provide reliable services, employ qualified and trustworthy personnel, and are free from misrepresentation and fraud.”

They couldn’t justify the hours already mandated; but those wielding power are not accountable to those they hold sway over.

Individuals locksmiths, as soon as they were required to procure and maintain a license to conduct an otherwise lawful enterprise became an easy source of revenue, permanent victims of the state to have their wallets picked under the guise of making Texas safer.

“As a rule, a thief only targets you once; but government comes back again and again,” isn’t that the old saying?

Here’s my suggestion to the Texas Locksmith Association, the Greater Houston Locksmith Association, Senators, Representatives and the DPS/PSB, get the hell out of our business. Is that language too strong? (You should have seen the rough draft.)

Stop pretending to make Texas safer by infringing on an individual’s inalienable God given right to conduct business in the public square; you’ve done enough damage to the free market.

“They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.” Ben Franklin

This article has been cross-posted to The Moral Liberal, a publication whose banner reads, “Defending The Judeo-Christian Ethic, Limited Government & The American Constitution.”


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