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A Discourse on Liberty Printable Version PRINTABLE VERSION
by Andy Carloff, United States Feb 1, 2006
Human Rights   Opinions
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It is in the heart of every revolution, in the mind of every Humanitarian; it is attacked by every dictator, scorned by every politician; it is held in animosity by the enemy of the people; held as the most sacrilege by every tyrant and the most sacred by every freeman -- it is the dream of a lover while they sleep, tossed and tumbled over their heart's desire -- it is the dirt under the fingernails of a worker, writhing with pain that their labors can feed their family -- it has been taught by philosophers, it has been revered by wisemen...it is sought by the heart and cherished with memories by the mind: it is liberty.

Some have argued that it is the presence of others that limits our freedom. That it is the various wants of each man that create conflict, which lead to fighting and wars. In heeding to our natural instincts of survival and domination, mankind has erected torture chambers, built prisons, put bondages on the legs of individual thought, put chains on the hands of free inquiry. Every new method of persecution and oppression has not been left undone, left alone. It has been the taste of mankind to seek wealth and glory, whether it leads others to lives of misery and vice or not.

So, it has been the argument of every philosopher, of every statesmen, that the presence of many men, and therefore, the presence of many interests, has been the greatest obstacle to liberty. To some extent, my reasoning ability must consent to this argument, that it has some merit, that to some extent, it is true. But to tell half the story, would be as much a lie as distorting it.

A man would be a slave if he were alone. Deprive any person from the society of their fellows, and they will know what true pain is. For no man can be free, when he knows that he cannot stimulate the emotions of another, by exciting passions of either lust or affection, by interesting another in stories and legends of times past. If a man were to speak his heart, were to utter the memories his mind had collected, and if there were no one to hear him, then he would be truly a lone. The philosopher will call him free, but he would still be a slave to pain. The statesman will call him in liberty, but he would be in the shackles of loneliness and depression. There are few individuals who would prefer life without their lovers, over death with them. So, it must be true; the man who lives with nothing but his reflection, may very well be cursed to a miserable life. Just as the man who lives with thoughtless and brutish persecutors, will be cursed to a similar life. Liberty, therefore, is neither the presence or lack of persons, but your relationship to them. It is this which cannot be denied, as it fulfills the premises of reason, it serves the honesty of compassion.

Mankind has lost his freedom by being without company, and being in the company of those who had the intention to exploit him. The greatest evils of the world could be solved if brotherly love were instituted in place of competition, if charity was the virtue of the heart that was followed, instead of the vice of domination being obeyed.

What, then, can be said of the liberty of women? As long as the Roman Empire existed and Europe dissolved into Western civilization, women have been regarded as inferior. The right to vote, something which has been enjoyed by men for centuries, has only been acquired in this nation in this past century. The wages between women and men have been unequal, despite their equal capability of productivity. In the mind of every intellectual, of every thinker and philosopher -- except those who have arduously followed the path of truth -- there has been a dogma, a social idea, that women have an inferior sort of emotion, that their thoughts are less valuable, that their affectionate is cheap, that their love is dirty. They have been made the whores of humanity, not on their own account, but on the account of their oppressors. Half of the human species has been cursed with this injustice, to be regarded as wholly inferior, in every aspect: emotional, intellectual, and spiritual. They have relied on the "scientific nature" and popularity of their understanding, just to give this sort of cruelty an aura of legitimacy.

Every woman ought to be free, from want, from misery, from slavery, from everything that may inhibit true independence.

The society of men has been ruled sometimes by savagery, other times by domination -- one is regarded as civilized and the other not so, but in both cases they operate on brutality, cruelty, and a totally disrespect for the humanity of others. One may be called primitive, and the other may be called advanced, but both may as well be lost the understanding of compassion or goodness as the other. A society may best be judged by the method it so decides to rear its children.

As the older generation teaches the younger generation, they are deciding whether their minds shall soar freely and their hearts shall genuinely follow their own desires; or they are deciding whether they are creating filler for their cemeteries, whether they are creating fodder for their prisons, whether they are creating targets for iniquity and injustice -- if a society treats its children brutally and harshly, without regard for development or kindness, the generation will grow up, and on their last breath, will wonder why they did not follow their dreams, why they did not seek out that horizon that was shining just beyond their thoughts. But, they may wonder in vain.

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Andy Carloff

Punkerslut (or Andy Carloff) has traveled all across the United States and has experienced American life in the urban centers, as a homeless squatter and as a blue-collar, working-class laborer. Since high school and early development, he has composed a variety of ideas on education, politics, and economy. His positions are ultra-leftist: politically an Anarchist, economically a Socialist, and culturally a Syndicalist. His writings are available through his website: http://www.punkerslut.com
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