The right to be a jerk and the need for libertarian activism

Libertarians, as advocates for the rights of various "wackes," often find themselves in their positions. In this way, libertarian ideas are often stuck with various extremists who want everything possible - just not freedom. How to get rid of such extremists and why do we lack libertarian activism?

Various discussions on freedoms, such as the one on freedom of speech, free upbringing and others have one side effect: they act as a magnet for various very special and often conflicting groups of people.

Freedom of speech

Examples of discussions about freedom of speech are:

On the one hand, we have here libertarians, freeing the freedom of the individual, to do what he sees fit. "Live and let live." Let everyone - on their own - say what they want. Let everyone - on their own - moderate as they wish.

Then we usually have it here conservatives: here it depends on the situation. Some are in favor of defending freedom of speech in Mohammed's cartoons, but when Polish activist Elžbieta Podlešná gives the Czestochowa Madonna a rainbow halo, it is an insult to faith worthy of being punished by law; then pressure from, for example, French politicians on Facebook to control content is inadmissible censorship and interference with freedoms, but an explicit law determining what Facebook can or cannot do with It's content is the defense of freedom.

Hard to know.

Then we have different ones progressive socialists: here the situation is often quite similar - take the current attitudes of the Conservatives, "turn the sign" and you're done.

The result is simple: the libertarian always encounters one of the other two groups for each topic. Once he is a friend of the progressive socialists (sending the police to the rainbow madonna for someone is nonsense), the second time again of the conservatives (everyone has the right to hold a gun). In the eyes of each given group, the libertarians are the discredited wackes, because they "make friends" with the strange ones from the "other side".

Freedom is defined by the fools

How free we are is not set by the feelings of the average of the society, which for the most of the time lives in line with the gray expectations of the mainstream and thus usually does not have much opportunity to come into conflict with power for some "freedom".

It depends above all on the strangest and most marginal of us - their limitation means shifting the boundary, the constant shifting of which will one day reach even the gray mass, which is exactly the moment when we can talk about open dictatorship or totalitarianism.

Libertarians and classical liberals, as defenders of freedoms, then take the position of defenders of rights of different - for most people - "mad" groups of people who then cling to the libertarian movement in anticipation of something other than what they actually gain.

There are many examples:

  • be it various racists (freedom of speech);
  • militant advocates of arms possession, who would prefer to be executed for stealing apples in a private garden (freedom of arms and freedom of ownership);
  • various opponents of compulsory vaccination (freedom from state enforcement);
  • elitists who would keep active suffrage only to economically active (who pays, has the right to decide / have a larger ownership share) / to men (giving the right to vote to a larger group of people - women - was a mistake, the right to vote should have as few people as possible, why about me do they have to decide?) / to women etc.;
  • advocates for traditional families (freedom of education against "LGBT lobby in schools")
  • as well as militant advocates of sexual minorities (sexual orientation is for everyone, everyone should have the same rights)
  • as well as homophobic conservatives (why should anyone be forced into anyone else's tolerance?)
  • and many others

When one often looks at various libertarian groups or organizations, one is horrified by whomever one finds there - various extremists who, if they have the power, will ideally exterminate their opponents or the "subhumans" they have identified.

Don't be afraid to oppose

Of course, everyone has the absolute right and freedom to be a bastard. But nobody has a right to impose on othershow to respond to this fact. It is also everyone's freedom to think about some of the mad-men - that they are, for example, homophobic racist jerks who are dangerous to everyone if they seize power.

Libertarianism is not just about simple "freedom from state oppression" - it is a complex philosophy built in a modern concept on classical liberalism. It is also about respect for individuality, equality before the law, equality in rights, openness, non - aggression and denial of privileges.

These are the basic ideological pillars that (among other things) helped to overcoming feudalism and the demolition of feudal privileges; disposal slavery in the western world (with a thousand-year tradition); refusal racism and others.

It goes without saying that defending people's right to act as a fool is an extremely important part of libertarianism - but defending other basic social principles is no less important. It is important to defend the right of racists to express their views, because this restriction could subsequently affect any non-mainstream of us.

However, it is no less important to say subsequently that their views are perverse and we strongly disagree with them. It's even more important!

Civic activism

Libertarians and classical liberals have always argued that similar views and attitudes in a free society "naturally" disappear because they are simply "ineffective." It is a market moralism - with which I agree.

But who but a liberal / libertarian should oppose misguided extreme views against the basic ideas of a free society? Who elsethan a liberal, is it to say that different racist / elitist / openly diverse views are dangerous to each of us? Who else should argue against them?

A progressive socialist counter-camp that proclaims equally dangerous ideas, with only a different sign, or in other areas? And where does the effort to defend and promote freedom disappear?

Civic activism - that is, to oppose publicly opinions that I disagree with and that attack the foundations of each of us' s freedom - is a fundamental tool of liberalism and libertarianism. Yes, it is important to defend the rights of those we do not agree with. It is just as important, however, to be able to oppose these attitudes define.

Let's not forget that.