Saturday, February 04, 2017

My position against violence

I want to make it clear that I am entirely opposed to violence in protests.

If I am organizing a protest and you think that is your opportunity to set something on fire or break a window I want you arrested and I will demand that you be arrested.

Now let me make this very clear. You certainly have a right to protest. I participate in protests.

However, I am really opposed to the suppression of free speech. When someone says something really loathsome there are those who think that for this one case an exception might be made. Libel is the only exception and even then it needs to be carefully defined. British libel law is rubbish.

I also think that in many cases the persons committing this violence are just searching for a pretext to be vandals or be violent and also be self-righteous about it.

Also, I think that it works against whatever cause you claim you are opposing. Opponents can point to the violence and avoid the issue at hand. Also, people are sympathetic to the victims of violence as they should be. People are also concerned about free speech. They can imagine that they might have an unpopular opinion and a mob might target them to suppress their opinion.

History is full of examples of mob violence attempting to suppress opinion of those who worked for social justice, such as the abolitionists.

These violent protesters are often parasites on another group's efforts. Some group is organizing a protest and they will show up and exploit the opportunity.

These violent protesters are looking for an opportunity to be violent, to smash things, to set things on fire, but to maintain their self-image of being something other than deranged individuals they will seek out really horrible opponents which allows them to justify their behavior and have fantasies that they are some type of revolutionaries. They are conducting their own little dramas for self-glorification and to satisfy their need to gratify their desire for violence.

Also, the resort to violence represents a lack of intellectual capacity in constructing arguments against racism and other stupidities. It represents a lack of self-control and I think a deranged personality.

Also, the violence often enables the target of these protests. The racist group's activity might otherwise languish in obscurity, but with a violent protest they get publicity.

Let me be clear about this, I am talking about the ordinary life in our nation. I suppose in some disordered situation, with the break down of civil government there would be cases where it would be justified. For example a force has come to drag books out of a library and burn them or some mob has come to disrupt a professor's class lecture. Even then I would work to protect the entry way to the library or drag the persons disruption of the class out of the class and try to avoid violence. And this would be a situation where there is a break down in democratic life. That situation is not now, and no please don't give me some involved rationalization why you think this situation is present.

Finally, what could lead to the break down in society is violence. After all, if some group is violent, it would encourage their opponents to be violent. If one speaker is protested with violence, then another speaker might be opposed with violence.  The whole situation would escalate.

I do think a person should defend themselves if attacked. I say this since someone might argue that I am for self-victimization.

I don't think this blog posting will dissuade the violent from being violent. They are driven by their needs to be violent and they end up in a little cult of like minded individuals.

However, in this partisan world, I think there will be those who will want to lump me in with the violent so that they can avoid the arguments I am making. I suppose this blog posting, like those I have done before against violence in this blog will not restrain them from their smears either, but it will be really clear that they are smears.

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