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Such a Sad Life

Imagine a person comes at you with this:

You see backwards time travel as impossible, and believe gravity can’t be reversed? I choose to see time travel to the past, and changing history, as something that happens all the time– and I believe in anti-gravity fields! 

What a sad life you must live to see things the way you do!

Why are you so against time travel? What evil things have you done in the past that you don’t want discovered or changed? You must not have met good time travelers– Maybe you’ve had bad experiences. American time travelers must be worse than those in the rest of the world. You need to get to know some good ones. You just need to get out of where you are and experience other places where we see things the way we want to see them. America must be a truly awful place, filled with miserable people, if you see things that way!

So, yeah, that was pretty must the gist of a recent exchange with a statist. Of course, it didn’t actually involve time travel and anti-gravity, but the nature of government, cops, and “taxation.”

Now, having spoken to people in other parts of the world, I realize US cops are worse than most. I have heard of places in Europe where cops aren’t ubiquitous, and the ones who are present aren’t intrusive, arrogant, and entitled jerks who expect instant, unquestioning obedience from the “mundanes.” There may even be a few in the US who are this way, but the reality of the job, even if the cops are “nice” in your location, and even if you believe they are necessary, is that they live on theft and impose the worthless opinions of politicians. No good person would ever do that for money.

Is it really a sad thing to accept the nature of reality and ethical behavior? To understand that theft and aggression are wrong, even if you don’t feel they actually harm you? Even if you deny the acts in question are theft and aggression?

I certainly don’t think so.

In fact, it would make me sad to believe these things are necessary and to make excuses for them. To justify imposing them on others against their will–even more than dealing with them myself would make me sad. I know others who are hurt by them much worse than I am–should I ignore that because I like parks and libraries? What if I were a pathetic coward who felt safer because there are cops? Does this feeling make it OK to force people to finance police departments against their will? Does it require that I ignore that cops violate human rights by their very existence in order to be a happy and contented person?

Should refusing to support the violation of other people be seen as “sad”? Ridiculous!

But, apparently, this is how some people see it: to see reality and apply ethical principles to it is a “sad” thing. Don’t believe me? Then check out the comments under this post on Steemit, if you can.

I accept reality, but I am not a generally sad or angry person. The things that make me saddest have nothing to do with government, and I don’t even dwell in that dark place very often.

The statists I know are much more likely to be sad, bitter, and angry people. And to take it out on people who aren’t the cause of their sadness, bitterness, and anger. Just because.

Yet, silly statists want to claim that because I don’t want to have you violated on my behalf, I am somehow a pitiable character. If I were as weak as a statist, that might make me angry.

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Kent McManigal

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