Looking carefully at that which is unseen.

Monthly Archives: April 2014

Thinking About: Hypocrisy

I forget where I read the idea that “what every slave wants, in his heart of hearts, is not freedom – but a slave of his own.” It fits in with the very visible “freedom for me, but not for thee” scenario you see oh-so-many people indulging in. Rarely does any freedopath step up and say, “I need to be restrained for my own good!” It’s always the Other who needs to be restrained “for his own good.” Or for the good of the freedopath. Thus the heavy drinker can, with a straight face, demand that marijuana be illegal. The coward living in a part of town where 911 doesn’t put you on hold (or the celebrity/politician with armed bodyguards) demands that nobody but his guardians have firearms. Or – one of my personal favorites – the communitarians who complain about the need to regulate the free market *and* corrupt politicians in the same breath. Just who, pray tell, do they think is going to regulate that market – unemployed underpants gnomes?

Likewise with the hypocrisy of the -ists. It’s *almost* a guarantee that any group that ends its description with -ists is going to be hypocritical at its core. Which brings me to this cartoon:

Sinfest is a wonderful cartoon, and in that little bit the artist has managed to catch both the ultimate in truths – and one of the ultimate hypocrisies. People need their own space to be with their own kind. Freedom of association also includes freedom NOT to associate. And yet the cartoon immediately brings back to mind my experience in law school where the newly formed Women’s Law Caucus (or some name like that) immediately made clear that no men were allowed. But one does not need much imagination to hear the howls of outrage that would have come if some men had formed the Men’s Law Caucus and had excluded women from membership. Or imagine, on a larger scale, what would happen if there was a proposed Congressional White Caucus to balance the long-established Black Caucus…

As a confirmed individualist I’ve never really understood the focus on skin color or sex as a means of determining a person’s worth for association (or any other) purposes. I recognize I’m in the minority on that, though, and that I’m just going to have to continue my progress through a world that cares about such things, because the vast majority want – or even need – to be able to kick others around with impunity, rather than agreeing to just live and work together in community.