From all the things I read on ATS I think so.
Now, this thread is not intended to discuss who is ever actually 'free' because, of course, in any society with an established alpha group (from
native tribes to 'first world' nations) personal freedoms are always curtailed if an individual is not the alpha of the social group, through
coersion or otherwise.
I'm not interested in discussions about an imagined 'total personal freedom' as there are enough threads on ATS discussing that already.
This thread is an invitation to discuss specific examples which may be compared between the UK and US regarding which society has a more pleasant
'prison cell' or personally imagined 'freedom' construct perception, and more importantly, why?
I'll start with why I think my perception of freedom is preferable to what I read on ATS from US members:
Many US states execute certain convicted criminals.
The UK does not excecute any. You cannot bring a life back on appeal.
There are many many posts of police brutality on ATS, too many.
I found one thread about UK police from 5 years ago on ATS - that was after searching the ATS engine, and then Google, while including
US citizens can be required to pay income/earnings tax from income wherever they may happen to be living in the world outside of the US.
The UK does not.
Most US states charge 'land taxes' to anyone who owns forestry/agricultural/pasture/similar land.
The UK does not. We are free to purchase land, move a trailer on it and live with no taxes to the state.
Many US cities and 'population zones' prevent all manner of things such as kids selling lemonade from the yard, grass turning brown, lighting fires
in the garden, growing vegetables in the front yard, keeping chickens/goats/whatever.
The UK does not. We have multiple laws that allow neighbours to complain about 'anti-social behaviour' providing an opportunity for a court to
decide if the evidence supports a need to stop the individuals behaviour. No problem with animals either as long as hygiene and welfare considerations
The US has a 'jay-walking' law which offenders may be fined for, or shot by a cop maybe for failing to comply?
UK law allows citizens to cross any road anywhere, except 70mph motorways/dual carriageways/urban clearways, trusting us to take responsibility for
when it is safe, or not, to cross.
US ballot access for an independent candidate wishing to pursue political election is very restrictive, and appears essentially as a two party system
based on the biggest budget.
I can get myself on the voting cards of my local constituency, standing to be a Member of Parliament, as simply as this:
In order to become a 'validly nominated' candidate, which means your name will appear on a ballot paper, you need to submit a completed set of
nomination forms together with a deposit of £500 to the (Acting) Returning Officer before 4pm on the deadline day for nominations.
I would also get this single postage-free public mailshot bonus included for my deposit:
As a 'validly nominated' candidate you will be entitled to free postage for one election communication to electors in your constituency, as well as
the use of certain rooms to hold public meetings.
US citizens wishing to fly (and those entering/leaving the US) get the TSA groping and aggressive border guard treatment.
UK border 'officials' do not routinely do that and are generally friendly if you are not being a prick.
US prisons have many people in cells for personal possession of banned substances.
The UK does not. Cops either go for 'confiscation' with a warning, an official recorded caution, or an £80 fixed penalty if the 'defendant' was
being a prick. Even if the 'defendant' refuses that, if 'personal' possession is obviously perceived by the Crown Prosecution Service they will
usually not go for prosecution due to the waste of public funds in legal fees.
Now, I could go on, but I've said enough for now, and invite any comments for examples about perceived freedom differences between the UK and the US.
I will ask though that the obvious unelected 'Crown head of state' is not something I wish to see polluting this topic. I am not a royalist, and
while angry that my son cannot aspire to be head of state due to accident of birth, I see the monarchy as an insignificance which I dismiss as
irrelevant...and I support republican ideals, but this thread is not about those in absolute power in the US or UK, just us the people, and our
perceptions of freedom.
Oh, and gun law rants are not welcome in this topic either, I am a citizen of good standing in the UK and can legally own a shotgun and a rifle, but I
am happy playing with my old Barnett Commando crossbow - I don't need an AR-15 or suchlike, because more people are struck by lightening in the UK
(around 60 per year) than die of gunshot wounds...and mostly criminal on criminal.
I always look forward to interesting or reasoned discussion, and please feel free to hijack the thread if I'm not involved, as long as it goes down a
clearly on-topic debate of UK/US perceptions and comparisons of 'freedom'