Monday, September 20, 2010

A world without Vicks.

“It would've been difficult to imagine this back in 2007 when Michael Vick(notes) was being led around in handcuffs,” said Yahoo Sports columnist Matthew J. Damell, “but I'm about to argue that the man is being wronged.” MJD was upset over Philadelphia Eagles coach Andy Reid’s decision to sit Vick in favor of Kevin Kolb in an upcoming game against the Jacksonville Jaguars.
I know, I know: Isaac doesn’t blog about sports! And it’s true, I don’t. I’d be doing a disservice to sports fans by doing so, since I’m a massive geek. However, I still haven’t found a place in my heart for Vick, so I felt the need to comment. Remember, he’s the guy who has it in his genetic make-up to not only feel ok about, but actually enjoy hanging, drowning, raping, killing dogs.
I know, I know, the horse has been good ‘n beat! We’ve all heard our fair share of Vick hating! And maybe you have. I haven’t. But, I’ll spare those of you with less sensitive hearts from having to endure more of it. The reason I bring it up is not to hate on Vick, though I think we all should, but to demonstrate something about the beauty of being anti-state, which I am.
Let me demonstrate: the argument for Vick’s redemption goes something like this: He’s served his debt to society (I literally vomit a little every time I hear this line used; can we all say CLICHE together)! Let him be! How long must he serve before his debt has been paid?! Etc. etc.
This argument, for the average statist, is actually a fairly difficult one to answer or even deny. However, for an anarchist like yours truly, it’s quite easily dismissed. For anarchists, individuals determine how long a debt must be paid, rather than an elected representative.
Let me be clear. Vick owed no debt to society. I’m not sure what debt Michael Vick owed or owes. Maybe he owes a debt to a woman who could have been the happy owner of one of his abused pit-bulls, a woman who was raped and killed because she didn’t have the protection of the dog. Maybe he owes a debt to the parent who has to explain to their child why it’s not acceptable to beat the family dog, even though the football legend did. The problem is, none of those things are easily measurable, if provable.
It would even be difficult to prove that Michael Vick owed something to the dogs, because they are just animals, and people kill and eat billions of animals every year. Of course, forcing dogs into rape cages, starving them, hanging them, drowning them, fighting them, etc. is uncommon to the beef and poultry industry. So maybe it could be proven that Vick owed something to the dogs. But the limits to which humans have dominion over animals in general is not an easy boundary to be drawn. I think most of us would agree that whatever the boundary, Vick crossed it.
There in lay the question: If someone crosses a boundary, which is generally accepted as such, who decides the punishment? Historically it looks like mankind has decided the courts should decide. I'm uncertain, I think a wise body of men with a broad understanding of “the boundaries” would do better than, well, the tyranny of the majority. However, I can’t accept the legitimacy of the court, due to the fact that its existence is contingent upon its denial of one of the most basic of all boundaries: liberty.
How does the court deny liberty? It’s not difficult to see. It can be shown through asking another question: Who pays the judge? Well silly, you and I do. How do we pay him? Through taxation. What is taxation? The mandatory forfeiture of your property. What is mandatory forfeiture of property? Slavery.
Therefore, the judicial system as it stands violates in its mere existence one of our most basic and fundamental rights.
You can’t have it both ways.
Right, so you’re saying: but how else can society exist? What would we do without forced taxation? Etc. COME ON PEOPLE! It’s 2010! There are answers to these things! Government is OUT OF STYLE! Hurting people is passé (unless you’re a Republican or Democrat). THERE IS A BETTER WAY!
So this may shock you, but the threat of getting thrown in prison for breaking a law is not the only thing that dictates human conduct! I know: A REVELATION! I doubt when you awoke this morning you said “I’m going to put my clothes on because if I don’t I might get arrested.” Rather, you just put them on … because it would be weird not to. However, had you not put your clothes on you probably would have been arrested. Do you think your average cop goes to bed every night thinking: “without me, there would be a world full of naked people.” And sleeps better than night?
Are you starting to understand? We have all grown so used to the idea that LAW DICTATES MAN that we forget there are other forces at work.
Go ahead, I bet you can’t think of a single example where some other motivator couldn’t be used as an alternative to violence. Sure, violence is the easy way out; it’s also the most unethical.
I want to introduce you to a very modern idea, hoped for by thousands of enlightened individuals throughout the world: liberty. Wait! It’s not that thing you are thinking of, unless you’re an anarchist like myself. I suggest to you that liberty is completely foreign to you, so long as you try to understand it through the lens of government. I can suggest that because the mere existence of government negates the possibility for liberty.
So how would things work without da gubment? Well, there are more blog posts ahead. But if you can’t wait, and you want some very compelling literature to aid you in your discovery of this idea, let me suggest a few reads. Please click the links below to get started on your journey towards liberty.
In the end, if we embrace the idea of liberty, we are sure to see the likes of dog torturer/rapist Vicks all but disappear from the world. Because a people who embrace liberty, a people who shun the initiation of aggression, a people who shun war, etc. are a people who will have no place in their world for dog torturer/rapists.
I’m one of those people. Are you?

A FEW good books to start out your TRUE classical liberal education (btw, most of them are online free in text and audio format):

A few good websites and podcasts to help you along your journey:

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