I’ve been pondering “gradualism” and “pragmatism“– things over which I have disagreed with people in the past.
And, I’ll probably continue to disagree in the future.
Let me illustrate my thinking.
You are Here. You want to be There. (I’ll assume for the moment that “There” is Rightful Liberty, where everyone’s right to do whatever they want, as long as it doesn’t violate anyone else’s equal and identical rights, is respected completely.)
If the path between Here and There was a nice, grassy meadow without threatening life forms or geological features, there wouldn’t be a problem. Just go.
Unfortunately, that’s not the case. Between Here and There are dangers and troubles, both seen and unseen. There are snakes and swamps and canyons. There are vast expanses of scree, and creeks. There are rutting bull elk, mosquitoes, bears, “laws“, and cops. These things can’t be completely avoided by skirting the territory; they might be minimized a little, though.
So, how to deal with it?
Some people want to go the long way around, befriending the mosquitoes and appeasing the cops out on the perimeter, while avoiding the hard path.
Others want to plow on ahead, just shoving their way through everything until they either get where they wanted to be, or die in the attempt.
Still others pick their way across, taking the shortest possible path the best they can, but never forgetting the destination.
The problem I have with those who try to go completely around everything is that too often, they forget where There is. Or that it even exists. They become comfortable with the status quo and hate anyone who threatens to remind them of There. They grow attached to some of the things they should recognize as wrong. Like cops, “laws”, “nice” politicians, and the government military. Then they behave as a collaborator against those who refuse to pretend that bad things (and people) are not bad. They may even begin defending these violations.
And that’s what I can’t stomach from “gradualists” and “pragmatists”.