When presented with a political or cultural dilemma I admit that my immediate reaction is not to attempt to find a nuanced, centrist position. I look at the problem, mentally hold it up to my values and attempt to discern whether this quandary is originating from the Left side of the political spectrum or the Right. The most important thing for me in classifying something as Left or Right is whether it is egalitarian or anti-egalitarian. I consider that distinction to be my political foundation.
When I read an article or social media post in which the writer is advocating for some form of radical individualism while decrying collectivism—which either goes undefined or is described using what they consider to be the most tyrannical States in recent history—I ask myself, “Who is going to protect these rights you hold dear?” If I were to ask the author that question, I would not expect a direct answer on most occasions. Instead, the response I most expect would be, “The government we have doesn’t protect our rights!” That in no way answers my question. I acknowledge this government doesn’t protect your rights, but some kind of collective protection must exist in order for your rights to remain intact.
Another response I’ll mention because I’ve received it more than once to the question of “Who is going to protect these rights you hold dear?” is, “That’s what I have guns for.” In the overwhelming majority of conversations, when someone invokes their 2nd Amendment rights they’re talking out their ass. They are in no way prepared to start shooting up government agents, and that’s a good thing because it’s not going to work out well for them (if you have to invoke the Bundy Ranch, you’re proving my point). And, unless you’re a psycho who believes that every State actor considers you to be their slave, these people are your neighbors, and, in the court of public opinion, killing your neighbor because he or she works as the County Clerk is not going to bode well for compiling a sympathetic jury (I’ll be declaring you guilty). Of course, that is you survive your murderous spree.
Categories: Left and Right
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