I used to be a nosering wearing, feminism-espousing, Obama House-Party throwing, capitalism-hating progressive. I believed that the Republicans were mean people, war mongerers, and that I was the only non-crazy Christian in the United States pretty much. I claimed to love people and would say things like, “All we need is love” and then distrust people so much that I honestly believed that we need the government to write laws to protect us from each other. Like Michael Moore, I sorta thought that Dick Cheney and Bush may have had something shady going on with that 911 thing, but I really thought that Obama would be different. Senator Obama said everything I wanted someone to say. He was going to:
- Repeal the Patriot Act
- Close Gitmo
- Bring about universal healthcare
- Restore the economy from the ground up
- Restore our privacy rights
- Bring the troops home
- Fix the prison system
When we got none of the above and his biggest accomplishment is to force us to purchase insurance from the very same people he was telling us were heartless bastards my days of believing in a Democratic savior were gone–and before you say I shouldn’t be so cynical, blah blah Elizabeth Warren, I ask how is her record better than Obamas as Senator? It’s not. People just have to move their adoration from one to the next or they lose it.
I lost mine. Sort of.
I have to thank Obama for making me wake up and realize a lot of very important things.
- We can’t fight against mean people labeling other people when we use labels ourselves.
- Groups are made up of individuals
- Groups are an illusion because like snowflakes, no two people are alike
- Individuals are important and have unalienable rights
- We are our interests, not our bodies
- Beer does help
- Winter is Coming
If someone looked at me the labels they would use to describe me on first glance are “female”, “white” “early 30s”, “attractive” (It’s true).
If they talked to me for 5 minutes only they might add “straight”, “libertarian”, “Christians”, “nerd” to it.
While most might not admit this, it is that 1st and 2nd layer of labels that we hardly ever get past–not because of the assholes of this world (whom I maintain as being fewer than the good people) but because good people in their fight against labels have inadvertently maintained that labeling system by supporting legislation to protect people who have been labeled!
They do this for good reasons. Good people don’t want bad people to hurt other good people.
The problem with this is not the “why” but the “how“. Back in the 1850s when the Congress was fighting about the Peculiar Institution of slavery, an anarchist named Lysander Spooner was planning on kidnapping the governor of Virginia to ransom him for abolition. It would have been a bold move, an appropriate move since blacks had been kidnapped and sold, and it shows that when you forget government is there, you’re more willing to do something than you are if it exists.
Need more proof? When Detroit went bankrupt did the city meltdown for lack of police? Did it fall apart?
You would expect that, right?
Crime went down because people purchased guns and suddenly average people took charge of their city.
According to the police chief
Police Chief James Craig noted back in January. At a press conference following the most recent self-defense shooting, he stated:
It does appear that more and more Detroiters are becoming empowered. More and more Detroiters are getting sick of the violence. I know of no other place where I’ve see this number of justifiable homicides.
People who are faced with a dangerous situation are taking matters into their own hands. We’re not advocating violence; we’re advocates of not being victims. We’re advocates of self-protection. We want people to be safe.
This should be a message to those who continue to perpetuate violence on Detroiters that enough is enough…. Detroiters are fed up and they are taking action.
And what of the city looking like a giant garbage dump (sorry, mom, it does)
People got sick of it and realized that no one was going to fix it so they started doing it. Read the http://www.mowergang.com story. You’ll be amazed at what people will do when they have to.
Okay, okay, you’re thinking, but what does this have to do with gay people being denied cupcakes and pizza? We have to make sure gays can buy pizza from bigots because mean people should have to serve gays their pizza. We need the government to force them to work against their will because they are mean people.
I’m glad you asked.
From Merriam Webster
Full Definition of SLAVERY2: submission to a dominating influence3a : the state of a person who is a chattel of another b : the practice of slaveholding
There is power in someone walking into a bakery and saying, “I’m not going to buy from you anymore because you turned down that couple last week because they were black or gay or whatever”. You have the power, just as much, if not more than the state doing it–and here’s why:
The state takes time. Boycotts do not.
The law says they get their day in court. The gay couple will have to prove that this is why they were denied. With the right attorney this will take forever and the next bakery will be smarter about how they phrase it and eventually like racism it will go undercover and boil over 50 years later.
We have a lot of power and that power is immediate. We choose not to use it because the crutch of government exists and because we believe The Grand Illusion that government will save us and yet…what has it actually fixed?
The War on Drugs–people not only still take drugs but we spend a half trillion each year in enforcement, rehab, and incarceration across the US.
The War on Poverty–not only are people still poor but ghetto culture has taken root just like institutionalization and people are unable to escape.
The War on Terror–what started as a small group of terrorists is now a global movement and we have lost most of our rights to privacy.
And look how government fixed our problem with insurance companies–we now have to buy insurance or we’re penalized.
Now, as you struggle with this list you’re thinking, but what about the Civil Rights Act? What about the Civil War???
Civil Rights Movement was powerful when people ran it. When the government took it over it caused resentment and hostility. See recent police shootings. The Civil War was still governments fixing governments.
The most peaceful regions of this world are those regions with fewer laws and less government, not more. We were pointed to Somalia as anarchy in motion, because it’s a lie. Somalia was not “anarchy”. It had a government that fought with warlords. Somaliland (a region of the former Somalia and now part of it) was anarchist-tribal and was 5000% less violent.
Zomia is a large region with next to zero law enforcement. Do you want to know why you’ve never heard of it? Because it’s peaceful.
I believe in people. I don’t pretend to believe in people and then assist in the creation of more laws to punish them. I don’t believe that laws are required to change minds because mine has changed a thousand times since I was born. I don’t believe that people are powerless.
I am not a progressive because I do not believe that I have the right to use force and power to assert my will over others even though I believe I am right and what I believe is right.
Kind people don’t use jails and courthouses against their enemies. Kind people love them.