Ok, I'm going to try to keep this as rant free as possible here - I am upset by the SCOTUS decision to uphold the healthcare law, but I'm not surprised by it. So there, my opinion's out.
Now, here's where I want to go with this. Chief Justice John Roberts vote in favor of it was the key component (a bit surprising). But the precedent set by his words is extremely dangerous. In his statements, he said as follows: "The mandate is not a legal command to buy insurance. Rather, it makes going without insurance just another thing the government taxes, like buying gasoline, or earning an income."
So let's take this to its logical conclusion. Roberts is saying that the government can tax you for not having something, or for not choosing to buy something. Where is the line drawn then? By this logic the Government could decide to tax you for not buying what they consider "green" energy, or for not buying what they consider "healthy" food. There is no limit to what you can be taxed for NOT having.
By that logic, let's envision the following scenario: What if a conservative effort were launched that was called the "Family Home and Neighborhood Defense and Protection Act" (FHNDPA) The logic behind this would be that no, or very few neighborhoods in the United States have an absolute zero crime rate, which means that every neighborhood in America eventually needs some sort of police service. Statistics prove that as the number of persons who own firearms, and are properly trained how to use them increases, crime rates dramatically decrease. Case in point would be Switzerland - every man is required to own a firearm and serve in the Swiss Military, or pay a fine. And - not coincidentally - Switzerland has one of the lowest, if not the lowest rate of violent crime in the entire world.
Under FHNDPA, American home and property owners would be required to do the same, own a firearm for home and family protection and defense of your neighbors, and either serve in the military or take government approved annual firearms training courses. This way you can ensure that your home, family, and neighborhood are adequately protected. Statistics prove that persons who know how to properly defend their property are able to do so much more effectively and in less time than it takes for police to arrive on the scene. Even if you live next door to the person in need of defense you are more likely to provide that service faster than it would take the police to arrive. So FHNDPA would be necessary and appropriate.
If you opt not to own a firearm and serve, or complete regular firearms training at your cost, you pay an annual tax that would be equal to the dollar amount of the minimum required caliber firearm and the cost of the required firearms training. FHNDPA would be constitutionally legal as provided by the Second Amendment, and by Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution, and would make going without a firearm and proper knowledge of how to use it "just another thing the government taxes, like buying gasoline, or earning an income" or NOT buying health insurance.
I believe there is a legitimate argument here, and one that needs to be considered.