Second Annual Libertas Institute Essay Contest Submissions

Below are the submissions to this year's essay contest, with the most recent submissions at the top. Would you like to submit your own and try to win the $1,500 prize? Click here for details.

The Implementation of Force by Megan Sessions

The improper use of force is an annihilator, a robber of liberty that must be kept in check by local governments and individuals. While one role of the federal government is to protect natural rights, it is the state government that is an important protector of liberty from invasive forced morals, forced mandates, and forced […]

Watchdogs of Freedom. by Mike Bonham

The proper role of any government is to protect our inherent life, liberty and personal property rights; the government is just an extension and organization of our existing powers. In America we have a few different levels of government that differ in jurisdiction and thus detail that help accomplish this . One key difference I’d […]

Individuals and their Communities: The Proper Role of Local Government in Balancing Conflicting Interests by Adam Pomeroy

The proper role of local government is to provide a forum where individuals can balance their need for self-direction and for communal action. In proving this assertion this essay: 1) discusses why local government must consider both individuals and their communities, 2) defines community and communal action, 3) explains the difference between local government’s role, […]

Giving Liberty a Try by Chris Jones

Expediency destroys principle. Government, especially local government, is all expediency. I learned this young, growing up near Washington DC , listening to Orrin Hatch extol the virtues of the free market while voting for budgets ever-more voraciously consuming the product of those markets. That was bad enough, and, admittedly, something so commonplace that it scarcely […]

The Proper Role of Municipal Governments by Micah Bruner

Governments are established to secure the unalienable rights of humankind. Born free, mankind creates governments and grants to that government certain powers to maximize the freedom of the governed. Further, as governments are created by virtue of the consent of the governed, they cannot possess powers beyond those inherent to the governed. This approach to […]

Joe Stalin, a Second Kitchen Sink, and the Provo City Council by Shaun Knapp

Government becomes increasingly laughable, in that it holds up grand premise, great pomp, ever touting the magnificence of its “concern” for “the American people” as the “guardian” and “protector” of the same. Its officers spew hollow promises that sicken the ears of the astute listener who discerns forked tongued hypocrites and haters of human liberty […]

Why There Is No Proper Role of Local Government by Steven Reid

I loathe attending my local Municipal Council meetings—yet I go. Sometimes. For every time they meet—mind you I am not one to abuse superlatives—the city embraces by jots and tittles tyranny; namely, the antithesis of that forgotten, unalienable endowment of right from the Creator. These elected agents of the local government are found collectively growing […]

A Declaration, an Ideal, and some Common Sense: the Logic of Local Government by Samuel Fisher

When I study the sacrifice, the faith, and the inspiration of the Founding Fathers, it fills me with a sense of the divine; out of such humble beginnings, these men laid the foundation of a just government that, as a global model of freedom, has withstood a literal siege of ignorance for over two centuries. […]

Dear Grandpa George Q. Cannon by Ali Eisenach

Dear Grandpa George Q. Cannon, I remember learning about your life in my 4th grade history class, It made me proud to share your name, a leader from the past. A pioneer, a congressman, a devoted man of God, a thinker, writer, publisher, a leader and a dad. But it wasn’t til I took the […]

The Only Purpose of Any Government, No Matter the Level by Casey Beres

It seems to be the predominant yet mistaken view in America that the federal government is to take care of everything, leaving only scraps for the states, which in turn leave morsels for the local governments. However, there are some that understand correctly that the federal government under American federalism is supposed to has less […]