OPINION


08-01-2009 

Larken Rose
Website: Larken Rose
To Whine or to Resist, That is the Question  
 
Imagine that a rash of burglaries had been happening in your home town, including repeated armed robberies of your local convenience stores and other local shops near your home. And suppose the people in your neighborhood held a meeting to discuss how to put an end to the crime wave, and the discussion went something like this:

Neighbor A: "This situation is intolerable! If we don't put an end to this right now, this town is going down the tubes!"

Neighbor B: "I agree. I can't tell you how angry I am. Good people are constantly being robbed. This has to stop! What are we going to do?"

You: "Well, for starters, are the local shop owners armed, so they can defend themselves? And how about if we do a sort of town watch thing? The crooks are often armed, so it might be good if we either chipped in to hire some armed security service, or have local people with guns taking turns driving around at night, and..."

Neighbor A: "Woaw, let's not start talking crazy! Come on, let's keep the discussion reasonable here."

Neighbor B: "I agree. I don't want to be associated with THAT guy [you]. That's not at all the kind of solution we're looking for."

You: "Huh? What's the problem? Well, if you guys don't like guns, let's at least come up with some way that the shops can easily lock down their places quickly, if they see one of the crooks coming, and then..."

Neighbor A: "Are you talking about trying to actually prevent or resist the robberies??!! We can't do that!"

Neighbor B: "Who invited this guy [you] to this meeting? Look, we're looking for real solutions, not this wacky, kooky stuff."

You: "Well, what did you guys have in mind?"

Neighbor A: "I've been working on a very strongly-worded letter we could send to the crooks, telling them just what we think of them."

Neighbor B: "And I've been planning a protest, with as many people as we can get to attend, where we publicly demand that the criminals stop robbing the local stores."

You: "And what if they don't?"

Neighbor A: "Then I guess we'd have to come up with better letters, or bigger demonstrations."

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You may find it hard to imagine having such a bizarre, ridiculous discussion, or trying to deal with people who are that batty. Some of us have no trouble imagining it, however, because we do it on a daily basis, with only a very slight change:

"Patriot" A: "This situation is intolerable! If we don't put an end to this, right now, this country is going down the tubes!"

"Patriot" B: "I agree. I can't tell you how angry I am. Good people are constantly being robbed. This has to stop! What are we going to do?"

And what happens when someone then suggests actually resisting tyranny, even if only passively?

"Patriot" A: "Woaw, let's not start talking crazy! Come on, let's keep the discussion reasonable here."

"Patriot" B: "I agree. I don't want to be associated with THAT guy [me]. That's not at all the kind of solution we're looking for. Who invited this guy to this meeting? Look, we're looking for real solutions, not this wacky, kooky stuff."

And what do they propose, instead?

"Patriot" A: "I've been working on a very strongly-worded letter we could send to our congressmen, telling them just what we think of them."

"Patriot" B: "And I've been planning a protest, with as many people as we can get to attend, where we publicly demand that congress respect our rights!"

And what if they don't (which they certainly won't)?

"Patriot" A: "Then I guess we'd have to come up with better letters, or bigger demonstrations."

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There is an enormous, fundamental difference between most people who say they are pro-freedom, and the people who actually believe in individual liberty. Lots of people express "outrage" at the dozens of ways in which those wearing the label of "government" are robbing us, defrauding us, controlling us, harassing us, assaulting us, and so on. But when someone comes right out and suggests resisting, even if only passively, lots of those alleged freedom-lovers either vocally object, or get very quiet.

Now, it's one thing to say that resisting in a certain way at a certain time is unlikely to have any positive effect (and that's often true), but it's quite another to actually be scared of the idea of disobeying the politicians (a.k.a. "breaking the law"), as most self-proclaimed freedom advocates are. If obeying whatever the politicians decide to call "law" is, in your mind, a higher moral obligation than fighting for freedom--yours and everyone else's--then stop pretending to love freedom. If you are still in the mindset of the slave who will bravely beg his master to free him, but who would never dream of running away without his "owner's" permission, then stop telling yourself that you believe in liberty.

The truth is, hardly any Americans these days actually believe in individual liberty and unalienable rights. In fact, even most of those who call themselves conservatives, Constitutionalists and libertarians believe that the only legitimate and civilized way to "resist" tyranny is to beg the masters to please be nicer to us.

And that is why there was such a wide disparity of responses to my July 4th speech in front of Independence Hall, among people who would usually consider themselves to be more or less on the same "side."
 
I know a lot of people talk about "uniting" and "working together," but my speech--and a lot of what I do, in fact--is intended to divide: divide the whiny slaves from the free men. And we need that divide, because whiny slaves don't ever achieve freedom; better methods of whining is all they will ever contribute to the supposedly shared cause.

When I openly talked about these things last July 4th, in front of Independence Hall (which seemed fitting), it scared some people, offended some people, and fired up some people. Well, now I hope to scare, offend, and fire up more people, now that the video of my July 4th speech has finally been posted online. Whether you agree a little bit, a lot, or completely with what I said in my July 4th "rant," I hope you will send the following link to everyone you know, to at least make them think about things, enough to decide which side they're on:

"You're Not the Boss of Me!"
Video of Larken Rose's July 4th speech.