From Twitter – “Anarchy might work for small, isolated communities, but it can’t work for a nation of 350 million.”
Probably true. So why aren’t we discussing an amicable divorce?
The most enduring relationship most of us experience, the one conventional wisdom insists we can’t question, is the political one that binds us to everyone else around us. We are born into this relationship and we’re expected to die in it. I can be amancipated from my parents, divorce my husband, disown my kids, tell my boss I got another job, and drop my dog at the pound. I’m allowed to move to another neighborhood, but I am still forced to accept the political choices of people I’ve never met, who may live thousands of miles away, and those choices affect my life. We don’t choose our political system, which does not take into account our personal preferences. It’s a forced betrothal to hundreds of millions of people who are unable to go our separate ways, even if we hate one another. It’s like being trapped in an abusive marriage from which there is no escape. We see the fruits of that abuse all around us, especially right now as people take to the streets insisting that they will not recognize the outcome of the 2016 election.
The teaparty movement protested President Obama’s policies and it earned them the label of “deplorable”. This current protest movement wants the election results set aside and I know people who are cheering them on.
But let’s be honest, folks. For every person who fears there is no place for them in Trump’s America, there’s another person who fears there is no place for them in Clinton’s America. And, neither one of them is necessary delusional. The last eight years should have taught conservatives that liberal progressives want them muted and isolated. Now they are afraid conservatives will now have the power to do the same to them. It is an entirely abusive relationship. So, why are we forced to stay with our abusive political spouse?
As you wander around during your day, take note at how civil people are when they are not bound to one another. People freely interact socially and economically … or not … in relative peace and courtesy. If I don’t like you or the way you do business, I don’t associate with you. We’re polite strangers, happy in our separateness. Despite the media hype, the incidents of random strangers just going ballistic on other random strangers is actually pretty low.
Until we get to politics.
Political ideas often go right to the core of people because they are key parts of our identity, making them extremely important to us. Yet in politics you are prevented from solely interacting with, and building a community with people who have similar values and political ideas. We are forced to live under ideas that we may find repulsive or even inhuman.
Just some quick examples:
- Slaveholders were forced to live in the same nation as abolitionists
- Pro-lifers who think abortion is murder of unborn children are expected to pay taxes that pro-choicers use to fund abortions
- Conservatives and progressives are expected to somehow find a middle ground even though both of them consider that middle ground to be the antithesis of what they believe in
- Individualists are expected to give up their individual goals and aspirations to whatever the collectivists want
- Pro-liberty people are expected to accept the dictates of statists.
- Trump crazies and Clinton lunatics are expected to get along after a close election decided who would be President.
Why do we need to submit to people and ideas that go against our own convictions?
I don’t necessarily think people I disagree with are evil, but I don’t want to live my life in ways that I disagree with, so why can’t I simply go my own way?
What would happen if every region, state, city, and individual were allowed the freedom to be a part of a society based around their own values and those of like-minded people?
Well, the animosity that builds as a result of having to tolerate and accept ideas which we perceive as wrong or harmful would largely disappear. Yeah, we would still not like people, and their ideas might still bother us, but we wouldn’t have to live with them, and we wouldn’t be subjected to their political force.
I believe in secession. Historically such movements were simply groups of people who were unsatisfied with the existing political order and wished to go their separate ways, so they severed political ties with an entity or group they no longer wished to associate with. We do it in marriages, churches … heck, the American Revolution, the Texas Revolution, the Hartford Convention were all historical examples that public school said we should smile upon. Our most modern example is the secession of the UK from the European Union. So why is it considered so controversial that we can’t even discuss it in the political realm?
Of course, someone will always bring up the Southern States’ attempt to leave the Union as THE example of secession and how it is very, very bad, but in truth, secession is merely an idea of people building a political and economic order more in line with their values.
This election should have provided sufficient evidence of the necessity of the principle of secession. The amount of hostility around the candidates and their supporters has brought the political order to a breaking point. We are currently experiencing more opposition, denial, and disgust than at any time since 1860. And we all know how that one ended.
Take a pause. Consider this. How did that one end? Yeah. Not pretty.
So why is it so crazy to think that maybe people should be allowed to set up political and governance systems more in tune with what they hold dear? What do we gain from forcibly binding together people who agree on virtually nothing and whose interactions are increasingly filled with pure hatred?
It is entirely possible that 320 million people will never be able to live amicably together and we’re just waking up to that fact as we reach that tipping point.
We could still be friends … trading partners, maybe work out a mutually agreeable foreign policy … but we should know by now that one half of the country telling the other half of the country to sit down and shut up while the “winners” decide what will be the rule of law for every one is going to lead to civil war.
Wouldn’t it be better if we admitted we can’t agree and stopped trying to force each other to see it our way?