Many in the hobby of metal detecting, from across the US, email me saying that they have run out of places to metal detect, and that they feel that they have been squeezed out of parks, and beaches, by too many laws. Most are giving up the hobby, and tossing their detectors into the closet. Here is the problem with that kind of defeatist attitude.
If you quit the hobby, then the only one to lose is you. You lose because you then give the power to the beauracrats who write the laws that take away our freedom to enjoy the hobby. The power grabbers want you to give up. They love the fact that they have control over what you and I can do. Forget about the idea that the laws are written to protect something. No they are not. The only reason why any law is written is to take away a freedom.
America was founded on the principal that we have a personal right to enjoy life as long as we do not infringe upon the rights of others. Remember, it was Thomas Jefferson who penned the famous words.
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.”
“The pursuit of happiness.” Those words are not just empty words, unless you toss your detector into your closet to forever collect dust. Those words, although obviously not written at that time to depict how we feel about metal detecting, treasure hunting, bottle digging, etc, but are words that were meant to pursue our lives in a country of great promise, in any way that gives us joy. Jefferson and our founders understood that through life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, that nothing outside of us could impede our goal to live free, unless we allow it to happen. By giving up the hobby, you give up your freedom.
Unfortunately, what is happening in the hobby is just a microcosm of what is happening in America. More and more laws are being written that take away a right. No longer are we allowed to believe in a dream and to follow our hearts passion. Instead, we are being pushed, and led into a mass grave filled with freebies, and government hyperbole of “ just follow me” and I’ll take care of you kind of attitude.
It is that same attitude by the elite that imposes unconstitutional laws that infringe upon our right to freely roam the country in search of goodies. I am not telling you to break the laws, fight against them if you’d like to; But do not give in to despotism, at any level. If your metal detector is in the closet, because you have allowed the beauracracy to beat you, then get off the couch, grab your detector, and go find a place to use it anyway. You can always, as I do, ask for permission of property owners to search their yards, or farm fields. Take command of your “pursuit of happiness.” Let no other, dictate to you, what you can, and cannot do. We did not fight a Revolution only to have us come back to being dictated to.