Cautionary Corollary
In Point of View The Cost of Free Wi-Fi [March 2007], Mr. Peterson makes a valid point regarding the use of a "free" government-sponsored Wi-Fi network.

Using the metaphor of the government-funded interstate highway system, he notes that we (the general public) don't really care where our fellow travelers are going and again don't care about what they do when they get there.

Using this metaphor, there is a corollary however. The general public not only cares, but demands that government regulates the use of the highway system for the general welfare. Even though the "public facility" is there for all of the public to use, government is mandated to enforce its laws, especially within the public ways.

One is not "free" to solicit illicit goods or transport illicit goods on the public highways. One cannot set up shop within the public way for even a licit business without restrictions that are not required for that same business on private properties, etc. 

The point is government does have a mandate and a strict obligation to enforce its laws, especially when any illicit use of its public properties is being made.

View Full Story