Rather, it’s about liberty versus equality, personal control versus governmental control, dispersed power versus centralized power, freedom versus statism, American Founding principles of limited government and natural rights versus Progressive principles of activist government and conventional (man-made) “rights.”
There is nothing particularly noble, compassionate, or decent about helping to hold a gun to your neighbor’s head and saying that he or she must now pay more money to the state to cover the costs of someone else’s health care. Compassion and decency are much more in evidence in offering your own limited time or hard-earned money to help the needy, in imploring (not forcing) others to do so, in forming civil associations to help, even in leading local government action (from which people can far more easily flee if it becomes oppressive).
This debate is about vibrancy; that is true. But it’s also about decency, and they’re on the same side of the fence. For there is nothing more decent than fighting for liberty — against efforts to centralize and consolidate power in a manner that Tocqueville said “hinders, compromises, enervates, extinguishes, dazes, and finally reduces each nation to being nothing more than a herd of timid and industrious animals of which the government is the shepherd.”