Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Your Right To Swing Your Fist Stops Where My Face Begins

100% of your daily amount of intelligent hyperbolic satire

THIS. Imma run off a good handful of copies and just start handing them off to every Entitlement Brat or Asshole Apologist I run into.

I don't care which species of the above it is, a rabid anti-vaxer, a rabid anti-any-gun-controller, a rabid pro-coal-roller, a rabid anti-regulationist, or whatever. Not one of them has been able to sufficiently explain to me, in any fashion that employs mappable reason, why their freedom to do __________ should override my freedom to not have to deal with the fallout or damage their activities will inflict on my life. Without my having agreed to accept any such consequences of their actions. Or frequently any acknowledgement of responsibility for said consequences on their part.

I hear people justifying this line of (alleged) thinking with stuff like "I have the means to pay to fix anything that goes wrong for me, and if you don't, that's your fault". Or "I'd rather have to accept whatever happens than have to curtail my freedom like a coward".

Okay, let's look at that scenario for a minute. Let's toss any ideas of altruism, justice, resource sustainability, cooperation, compassion, civility, etc. in a handy broom closet for the moment, and say you can have absolute freedom to do exactly as you wish, without having to take into account how your actions may impact anyone or anything else.

What's your plan for when someone else comes along and says "I have a right to do __________, and you better shut up and let me", and they happen to be bigger than you? Because no matter how independent, tough, or "blessed" you think you are, there's always going to be someone who can outdo you. Do you really, really, REALLY want to live in that world? A large portion of human civilization has at various points, and it's sucked excessively. Even for the badasses at the top, once someone else decided they wanted that spot.

I do hear a handful of people talking about supposedly returning to the shiny, golden, photoshopped Good Ol' Days when Men Were Free & Everyone Pulled Their Own Weight & Minded Their Own Business. And everyone was happier. Except the people who lived by total independence usually died off because of obstacles and problems too big for one or two people to handle alone. And the people living in small groups usually only had as much freedom as the group power holder or the existing social order allowed them.

The whole process of civilization is about people making agreements to cooperate with each other as larger groups, with a wider range of skills and resources, and make compromises on some things. Because even if you're a hard worker and highly self-sufficient, sooner or later you're going to need help with something. There's a reasonable middle ground to be had between a Nanny State and Extremist Me-ism. But we have to work Compromise & Cooperation like pros to get to it.

If you really insist on not having anything like those agreements, then to avoid doing the same taking away of choices to other people that you say is being done to you, get thee to a walled, self-sufficient living arrangement where you don't have to interact with anyone else. Or more importantly, we don't have to interact with your choices.

Also, just because:

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