Most conservatives fear the federal government as the chief abuser of their God-given rights.
And even though federal government agencies like the IRS, NSA, FBI, BATF and other alphabet-abusers strike fear into the very heart of America, the fact is that local governments tend to be the first to steamroll over the rights for one to live as they please.
This is why Americans should be furious to know it’s now illegal to record music on your computer in this conservative city.
Nashville, TN, is known as “Music City.”
Apparently, the wealthy elite who control the politics, as well as the commerce in Nashville, have let it go to their collective heads.
And now they’re making it illegal for individuals to record music in the privacy of their home.
As far as they’re concerned, making music in an unlicensed facility is criminal, mainly because if the government doesn’t know about it, then they won’t be able to tax it.
That, and the influential big studios don’t want any small-timers robbing them of potential profits.
This unfair government code has forced one local musician to sue the city.
In 2015, Elijah ‘Lij’ Shaw was told he could not operate a recording studio out of his home office.
Nashville officials sent him a letter from the Department of Codes and Building Inspection telling him that having friends over and charging them to record music violated local ordinances.
They told him he was operating a home business without a permit and was in violation of the law.
They threatened him with fines as well as eventual arrest if he didn’t comply with their demands.
Initially, Shaw didn’t know what to do about the entire debacle.
Nashville city officials made it clear they weren’t messing around, though.
Within a few weeks, the city went so far as to send a city official to his home to perform an inspection.
The official itemized his recording equipment and told him if he didn’t remove the equipment and take down his website’s pricing matrix (for his services), they’d ruin his life.
While all this sounds terrible, (and it is), Shaw isn’t taking it lying down.
After a long, drawn-out affair to reinstate his right to record, Shaw was eventually hit with a cease and desist letter by the city in late 2018.
He is now embroiled in a lawsuit to end Nashville’s bullying business code.
As of the current time, “He and another local entrepreneur are now suing the city with the help of a libertarian law firm, the Institute for Justice. Their suit claims that Nashville’s home business ban is an unconstitutional restriction on the right to earn a living.”
“More than that, the suit is an attempt to protect Nashville’s storied music scene from outdated zoning codes that segregate cities into commercial and residential categories while criminalizing the sort of creative spontaneity from which great music is born,” as Christian Britschgi writing for Reason.com notes.
The road to repealing the ordinance will not be an easy one.
Not only does Shaw and his fellow suit-filers have to go up against the city, but they also have to fight back against anonymous accusers who claim these studios are a nuisance and keep people up at night.
Whatever your opinions are on the matter, it bears repeating: While the federal government tends to get the most attention for its abuses of constitutional rights, the smaller, local governments can be just as corrupt – and they need to be kept in check at all times.