This may sound like a silly question. You’re probably already thinking, “of course not!” Bear with me and keep reading, because I’m going to dig into some of the nitty-gritty details of how our global culture works, and you’ll see exactly why I am asking you this question.
Consider some government program that you really love. It doesn’t matter where you place yourself in the political spectrum, or what the issue is. You might be pro-choice or pro-life, and your local government supports your position. You might be in favor of universal health care or against it, and your local government supports your position. You might be in favor of invading Iran or against it, and your local government supports your position. It doesn’t matter the issue. Just find something that you believe is a just cause, and your government supports that cause. For most people, this should be easy.
If you can’t think of an issue, then take a few minutes, maybe do some Internet research, and come back and continue reading once you have an issue that fits the bill.
Now that you have an issue, let me say that I completely support your right to have that opinion.
I do not agree with that same government program. So, let me ask you this: Are you willing to give me the same consideration that I am giving you to be against that program? Are you willing to allow me to disagree with you? Are you willing to allow me that without using force against me to make me support that cause?
It wouldn’t make any sense, would it, if I were not allowed to act upon my disagreement. Correct?
If you like that government program, you should be free to support it in any way you choose. You’re welcome to give as much money you like to support that cause. You’re welcome to volunteer your bodily efforts in supporting that cause. I would never dream of using force against you to prevent you from supporting that cause.
Are you willing to give me the same consideration I’m giving you? Am I free to act upon my disagreement in the same way? Am I free to not pay for that same government program due to my disagreement with it? Am I free to not give my bodily efforts in support of that cause?
Am I free to not like and not support that program without you advocating the threat of force or use of force against me?
Please realize that it does not matter which government program we’re talking about, but I’ll give you a number of programs which I disagree with, do not like, and do not want to pay for or give my bodily support to: The Department of Education, Social Security, Medicare, the Armed Forces, Foreign Wars, Corporate Welfare Programs, Personal Welfare Programs. Those are just the tip of the iceberg, but there should be something in there for everyone.
Do you support the use of force against me for my refusal to pay for these programs, for my refusal to agree with these programs, for my refusal to lend my bodily support to these programs? Or do you afford me the same rights and peaceful solution I afford you: to support or not support any programs in whatever ways you see fit?
I will not pick up the gun to force you to support any program I believe in.
Will you pick up the gun to force me to support any program you believe in?
Realize that the government will absolutely use force against me, allegedly on behalf of the taxpaying citizens who voted for that program. They will pick up the gun. They will threaten to use it, or potentially actually use it, for my refusal to participate. Your use of government is merely the indirect use of the gun against me.
Violence is at the core of the Statist solution to social problems. The gun is the core of the Statist prescription for “improving” the world.
Your support of The State, regardless of your support of whatever program, is the support of the use of the gun against every person who refuses to participate in or fund whatever government program.
Will you continue to use that gun, or will you put it down, step away from it, and choose a more peaceful path through life? Will you use a proxy of force against me to solve the world’s problems? Or will you reject that proxy in favor of a peaceful, non-forceful method of organizing society?
Photo by Brennan Cavanaugh