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When So-Called Anarchists Look to the State as Savior

The first argument:

This is a crisis! Government needs to act! Look at all these scary stories about incidents of gun violence! Is that what you want?! If you oppose gun control, you must approve of the violence going on! Sure, not all people trying to buy guns intend to do nasty things, but some are going to, and the only way to be safe is to enforce laws stopping anyone from buying a gun, or at least requiring that people can only buy a gun if they get permission from government first!

Look, here’s another scary story about gun violence! Is that what you want? Look at these statistics! Look at the horrendous violence that occurs when we allow just anyone to have guns! Sure, ideally we want a free society, but life as we know it is doomed if we don’t stop this! In this case, the common good—our very survival—depends upon the state doing something to avert this disaster!

We have to be practical, and realistic! Allowing people this much freedom is only going to make us all less free! So in this case, the ends justifies the means! In this case, it’s justifiable and necessary that the government forcibly limit and control people. Otherwise, some of those who want to own guns are going to do nasty things! Do you want that on your conscience? Why don’t you go talk to those who have been victimized by gun violence, and tell them how great gun rights are! Have you no compassion?!

Are you really that heartless? If you cared at all about the children, and about the future of our nation, you would support having government enforcing laws to prevent this! Otherwise there will be bloody mayhem!!

The second argument:

This is a crisis! Government needs to act! Look at all these scary stories about incidents of immigrants committing violence! Is that what you want?! If you oppose closed borders, you must approve of the violence going on! Sure, not all people trying to immigrate here intend to do nasty things, but some are going to, and the only way to be safe is to enforce laws stopping anyone from crossing the border, or at least requiring that people can only cross the border if they get permission from government first!

Look, here’s another scary story about immigrants committing violence! Is that what you want? Look at these statistics! Look at the horrendous violence that occurs when we allow just anyone to cross the border! Sure, ideally we want a free society, but life as we know it is doomed if we don’t stop this! In this case, the common good—our very survival—depends upon the state doing something to avert this disaster!

We have to be practical, and realistic! Allowing people this much freedom is only going to make us all less free! So in this case, the ends justifies the means! In this case, it’s justifiable and necessary that the government forcibly limit and control people. Otherwise, some of those who want to immigrate here are going to do nasty things! Do you want that on your conscience? Why don’t you go talk to those who have been victimized by immigrants, and tell them how great open borders are! Have you no compassion?!

Are you really that heartless? If you cared at all about the children, and about the future of our nation, you would support having government enforcing laws to prevent this! Otherwise there will be bloody mayhem!!

If you think one of those arguments is bogus, and the other is compelling, it’s because fear has addled your brain, and scared the principles right out of you. And yes, I’ve heard self-described “anarchists” arguing all of what you see in the second argument. And it’s downright pathetic to watch.

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Larken Rose

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Larken Rose is an anarchist author best known for challenging the IRS to answer questions about the federal tax liability of citizens, and being put in prison with no questions answered. He is the author of The Most Dangerous Superstition.

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