Tag Archives: anarchism

Tolkien on Anarchism

JRR Tolkien on Anarchism

Religious liberty and thought crimes

When the mechanism for punishing conscience is established by law, any political power that takes control will use the mechanism to punish those with opposing ideas. The mechanism is neutral, and eventually, you’ll be on the opposite side of the controlling power. You could avoid this by not allowing the mechanisms for punishing conscience to be established by law. Has anyone ever changed another person’s conscience by coercion? Forced underground, conscience eventually re-emerges, angrier and stronger. Beware of well-intended mechanisms that can be turned against you when the center of power shifts. Beware of politically suppressing a group with which you disagree.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/6/62/A_protester_wearing_breathing_gas_mask._Clashes_between_protesters_and_interior_troops_persist._Euromaidan_Protests.jpg/640px-A_protester_wearing_breathing_gas_mask._Clashes_between_protesters_and_interior_troops_persist._Euromaidan_Protests.jpg

A protester wearing breathing gas mask. Photo by Mstyslav Chernov

‘America has harsher [religious] restrictions than roughly 130 other countries,’ says The Atlantic

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” This is the first line of the first amendment in the United States Constitution; religious freedom was clearly a legal priority of the men who drafted the Bill of Rights. Yet, 225 years later, the Pew Research Center’s Religion and Public Life Project has said the United States places a “moderate” level of restrictions on religious practice compared to the other countries in the world. According to Pew, the U.S. saw a marked increase in hostility toward religion starting in 2009, and this level remained consistent in the following years.

So begins an article by Emma Green in The Atlantic entitled, “The U.S. Puts ‘Moderate’ restrictions on Religious Freedom.”

The chart with the article is fascinating, allowing an interactive look at changes in religious liberties — or losses of religious liberties — around the globe.

To me, it’s a reminder: In every corner of the United States today, the First Amendment is under attack, including ridiculous attacks on student and faculty speech on university campuses as well as federal government assaults on individual conscience.

You ought to seek the most liberty for everyone, even people you dislike and disagree-with. The alternative? Liberties that alternate with the fluctuations of political power.

 

‘Please don’t change the world’

“The more appealing a leader is, the more likely he’ll be crazy.” And our candidates want to be our leaders, and they say they want to change the world. Get the full picture here.