Too Afraid to Be Free

Did you know that life is a terminal condition; as the Canadian rock band RUSH once sang, “We’re only immortal for a limited time.” (Dreamline, 1991) Nobody knows when they are going to die; only God knows that. You could walk outside and get struck by lightning; you could be driving down the road and be hit by an out of control tractor trailer rig; or you could just drop dead of a massive aneurysm…nobody really knows how or when the end will come for them; and you can’t live in constant fear that the end is near.

In the movie Braveheart there is a scene that always gets to me; it comes towards the end of the film when William Wallace is in prison awaiting his execution and Isabella comes to him and begs him to plead for mercy. Wallace tells her, “Every man dies, but not every man really lives.” Now that may not make sense to some, they might say, “My heart is beating and my lungs are taking in air, so I must be alive, right?” Well yes, but so are the hearts and lungs of those sitting in prisons across the country; but they lack one vital aspect-liberty; or freedom. Maybe that quote will make more sense when you connect it to another from that film, “They may take our lives but they will never take our freedom.”

Freedom, or for the purpose of this discussion, liberty is that vital quality that makes life worth living; and without it you’re merely a slave to those who tell you what you can and cannot do. Liberty is what our ancestors fought for in 1776; or have you forgotten Patrick Henry’s immortal words, “Give me liberty or give me death.” To men like Henry a life without liberty was not a life worth living. It is also the reason why Henry so steadfastly opposed the ratification of the Constitution; he saw that the system it outlined posed a threat, a serious threat, to the liberty of the people; it is why he proclaimed, “You are not to inquire how your trade may be increased, nor how you are to become a great and powerful people, but how your liberties can be secured; for liberty ought to be the direct end of your Government. … Liberty, the greatest of all earthly blessings-give us that precious jewel, and you may take every thing else.”

For quite some time now, whenever I leave my home and join the teeming mass of society, I see people walking around who don’t know what liberty is; due to the fact that they are covering their faces with all manner of ridiculous face masks; just because someone in a position of authority somewhere told them they must. These people are driven by fear; fear of catching some virus; fear of standing out from the crowd; fear of punishment for not complying with orders…fear of being free! That’s right, you heard me; I said they are afraid of being free.

In the movie Easy Rider there is a scene that explains what I mean by that. The scene is known as either the campfire scene or the freedom monologue; in either case it goes as follows:

George Hanson: You know, this used to be a helluva good country. I can’t understand what’s gone wrong with it.

Billy: Man, everybody got chicken, that’s what happened. Hey, we can’t even get into like, a second-rate hotel, I mean, a second-rate motel, you dig?
They think we’re gonna cut their throat or somethin’. They’re scared, man.

George Hanson: They’re not scared of you. They’re scared of what you represent to ’em.

Billy: Hey, man. All we represent to them, man, is somebody who needs a haircut.

George Hanson: Oh, no. What you represent to them is freedom.

Billy: What the hell is wrong with freedom? That’s what it’s all about.

George Hanson: Oh, yeah, that’s right. That’s what’s it’s all about, all right. But talkin’ about it and bein’ it, that’s two different things. I mean, it’s real hard to be free when you are bought and sold in the marketplace. Of course, don’t ever tell anybody that they’re not free, ’cause then they’re gonna get real busy killin’ and maimin’ to prove to you that they are. Oh, yeah, they’re gonna talk to you, and talk to you, and talk to you about individual freedom. But they see a free individual, it’s gonna scare ’em.

That is why people freak out when they see someone not wearing their face mask; it is why they mace them, scream at them, or rat them out. Fear; plain and simple fear of someone who has the courage to decide for themselves how they will live their life. These are the same people who would rat out their friends, neighbors, and even family members for a slice of bread or a bag of silver; and if you don’t get the Judas analogy you’re beyond hope.

This fear is not just limited to this Covid virus either; it permeates the lives of people today. If there is a mass shooting the cry goes out, ban guns; when a gun is simply a tool. Even a hammer or a screwdriver can kill someone; yet I’ve yet to hear for common sense hammer control laws to be passed. Same thing happened after 9/11; turn on the idiot box and all you heard was fear mongering by the news media; when the chances of you becoming a victim of a terrorist attack are about equal to your chances of winning the lottery. Allow me to let you in on a little secret; if you let fear control your life, you are not free!

I’ll let you in on another secret; there are things that scare the living shit out of me. Heights scare me, as do spiders, and public speaking. The thing about it is that I avoid situations where I am exposed to the things that scare me, I don’t cry that we should pass a law requiring no building to be taller than one story; that we ban speech class in schools, or we declare war on spiders; I simply avoid them and let others decide for themselves how they will deal with the things that frighten me. I don’t seek to control anyone else’s life; and that is what freedom is all about; letting each person decide for themselves how they will live.

There is a book that everyone should read; a book that unfortunately wouldn’t sink in to the minds of those who live in constant fear; and need a governing force to keep them safe. Nonetheless I’m going to spend a few moments discussing a passage from that book; The Politics of Obedience-The Discourse of Voluntary Servitude, by Etienne de la Boetie, (1576).

The first passage I wish to discuss states, “For the present I should like merely to understand how it happens that so many men, so many villages, so many cities, so many nations, sometimes suffer under a single tyrant who has no other power than the power they give him; who is able to harm them only to the extent to which they have the willingness to bear with him; who could do them absolutely no injury unless they preferred to put up with him rather than contradict him. Surely a striking situation!”

While this book was written in the times of monarchs, (Kings), the premise rings as true today as it did back them; even more so when you consider that our system of government supposedly rests upon the consent of the governed. Don’t you find it the least bit striking how much we ‘consent’ to? If all systems of government, local, state and federal, derive their authority from the people, then does that not make them our servants; not our masters? Does it not also mean that if they do something we do not like, or something that exceeds the express authority we have granted them that we have the right to simply say NO, WE WILL NOT CONSENT TO THAT, NOR WILL WE COMPLY! But then again, that takes courage; courage to exercise your freedom from tyranny and oppression; courage which is sorely lacking in this country today.

After all, they write the laws, they have the police and federal agents on their side; enforcing these laws that violate your freedom; can’t fight city hall, right? I’ll bet you would have fit right in back in a tavern back in 1776…AT A TABLE FILLED WITH BRITISH LOYALISTS!!! You certainly would not have been welcome at the table of men like Patrick Henry or Sam Adams, who said, “If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude greater than the animating contest for freedom, go home from us in peace. We seek not your counsel, nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you; May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen.”

Yeah, government has all kinds of jack booted thugs who go around tyrannizing the people and enforcing the laws; King George III had a fucking army at his command that the patriots of 76 had the courage to take on. What’s your excuse; Oh gee, can’t miss tonight’s episode of Dancing With the Stars? I may not agree with their beliefs, but at least those protesters/rioters in Antifa and Black Lives Matter have the courage to get off their asses and take their cause to the streets. So where are all the freedom loving Americans right now; waiting till November so they can vote for 4 more years of Trump; the same guy who said, “Take the guns first, give them due process later”? That Trump? Yeah, Trump’s been real good at restoring your liberty…NOT!!! But he’s gonna make America great again by golly; gonna bring them jobs back to America; make our country strong and powerful again. Hmm, seems to me one of our ancestors once said that was not the purpose for which governments are instituted among me. That’s right, it was that fellow Thomas Jefferson, who wrote something called the Declaration of Independence; where he said, “That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men…” And what, perchance, might those rights be? Well it seems they are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. Damn, there’s that word liberty again!

Then, in 1788, after James Madison and his merry band of criminals had sought to topple the existing government with one of their own creation, that fellow Patrick Henry chimed in and said, “You are not to inquire how your trade may be increased, nor how you are to become a great and powerful people, but how your liberties can be secured; for liberty ought to be the direct end of your Government.” Boy, it seems that no matter where I look in history I keep seeing references to liberty; not making America great, not providing for your comfort and security, but liberty; the ability to live your life free from restraint so long as you do not threaten the life, liberty and property of others.

So if government derives its authority from you, (the people in general), and if government does things that violate or restrict your rights and liberty, then who the hell do you think is to blame for that? Them? Well gee whiz, they can ONLY do what you LET THEM DO. If you just sit on your ass and say, “Well maybe I’ll wait till the next election and see if the next guy does a better job” then you’re to blame. You see, there’s another thing that fellow Thomas Jefferson wrote into the Declaration of Independence; and it’s something you might not like very much, “But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.” I don’t see anything in there about voting; do you? All I see is, (and this is paraphrasing), “If government sucks, get rid of it and create one that won’t suck.” It’s kind of sad that we once had one that didn’t suck back in 1786; until a bunch of power hungry son’s a bitches came along and replaced it with one that does suck…and suck bad!

What pisses me off the most is that at least the Democrats, (liberals), are pretty open about what they stand for; what their goals are. You can go to any search engine on the internet and type in Democratic Party Platform and you’ll find results for it; outlining their goals for the current year. More often than not it sounds almost like they took their platform right out of the Communist Manifesto; but that’s beside the point. The point is it’s right there in black and white what they want to accomplish.

Not so with you fucking Republicans. Do the same thing; go to a web browser and type in Republican Party Platform and you’ll find what they claim to stand for. I happen to have the 1952 Republican Party Platform open in another window right now; want me to quote from it for you? Oh, by the way, that was the year the Dwight Eisenhower was running for president; hoping to unseat a long train of Democrats in the Oval Office. I’ll just throw a few passages out from the 1952 GOP platform for your perusal:

– We maintain that man was not born to be ruled, but that he consented to be governed; and that the reasons that moved him thereto are few and simple.

– We hold that government, and those entrusted with government, should set a high example of honesty, of justice, and unselfish devotion to the public good; that they should labor to maintain tranquility at home and peace and friendship with all the nations of the earth.

– We charge that they have arrogantly deprived our citizens of precious liberties by seizing powers never granted.

– They claim prosperity but the appearance of economic health is created by war expenditures, waste and extravagance, planned emergencies, and war crises. They have debauched our money by cutting in half the purchasing power of our dollar.

Need I go on? Boy, it sure sounds to me like they are quoting from the GOP playbook; I just can’t decide if it is the 2008 or 2016 edition. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying the Democrats would have done any better, they wouldn’t have; but at least they are honest about who and what they are. You people call yourselves conservatives, defenders of liberty, yet you elect people who are only slightly better than their opponents. Not only that, but once elected you go into a state of hibernation; ignoring the crimes they commit against you and your liberty. If I were to search for an analogy to describe America conservatives today I think the best one would be to call y’all Liberal Lites; the same policies but less filling. But by God, Trump is better than that witch Hillary, and that’s good enough for me, right?

My God people, and I’m primarily talking to the so-called conservative right, if you cannot see that there has been a long train of abuses and usurpations, and that these abuses and usurpations have taken place regardless of whether the Democrats or Republicans control government, then you are either blind or retarded.

You know, I could honestly give a shit if you wanted to live your live in servitude to an uncaring and unjust government; so long as the laws and taxes it enacts did not affect me…but they do; and that’s why I get so damned angry; because you idiots are fucking with MY FREEDOM!

Supposedly this system was erected based upon the consent of the people. Well I don’t consent to it, to its laws, and to you imposing your views upon me through elected proxies who couldn’t recite a single paragraph from the Constitution, The Bill of Rights or the Declaration of Independence. Yet you vote for these ignorant fucks, and then you allow them to pass laws that affect, not only your life, but mine as well. What a brilliant plan; what could go wrong? Look around people, you’ll see what has gone wrong; that is if you’re not too scared to take off your face mask long enough to take a good look see.

America is on the same path that Germany was back in 1939; a path that led to absolute tyranny, with jack booted thugs asking you for your papers, and rounding up dissidents to be executed. The thing about it is, government today has a lot more technology at their disposal to monitor, track, and control you; meaning that if you want to get your freedom back, the fight is gonna be A LOT harder than your ancestors faced back in 1776.

You’re not gonna get your freedom back at the voting booth. Sorry, ain’t gonna happen Sparky. (Sorry Bart, had to steal that line from you). You want your freedom back at this stage in the game you’re going to have to get your hands dirty; you may have to shed some blood to do so; you may even have to give your life so that your children and their children can live in a country that enjoys the freedom you, your parents, and their parents, have allowed government to take from you.

Thomas Jefferson did say that the tree of liberty needed to be refreshed with the blood of patriots and tyrants; I just hope that tree hasn’t gone without watering so long that it has died. You see, Winston Churchill, although he was a Brit, said something you should take to mind; that is if liberty means anything at all to you, “If you will not fight for right when you can easily win without bloodshed; if you will not fight when your victory is sure and not too costly; you may

come to the moment when you will have to fight with all the odds against you and only a precarious chance of survival. There may even be a worse case. You may have to fight when there is no hope of victory, because it is better to perish than to live as slaves.”

One final thing. If you call yourself a Christian, then you should give some serious thought to where your rights and liberty come from. If Jefferson was right when he said, “God who gave us life gave us liberty” I don’t think that you’ll go without having to answer for why you let that liberty be taken from you without a fight. Just saying…If you’re afraid of things, you might want to be afraid of that; not what men can do to you for defending your liberty.

About Br'er Rabbit

I'm just one person out of millions of others. The only thing different about me is that I don't walk around with my head up my ass.
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