What happens when a government works to liberate dangerous and violent criminals from prison in the name of their own virtue? Is liberty in this situation desirable? What about for non-violent pedophiles? Is liberty absolutely good under these circumstances? Of course it isn’t. This just goes to show that liberty is not an Ultimate Good desirable under any and all circumstances.
Justice, Love, Forgiveness. These are the only three I can think up in this moment. Justice under any circumstance is preferable because it necessitates the outcome of a righteous decision on behalf of the afflicted against the offender. Love under any circumstance is preferable because it necessitates the opposite of hate in every way. True love guarantees actions of good faith, hope for the best, and pursuit of Good—actualized or not. Forgiveness is preferable under any circumstances because it puts to bed any possibilities of a chain of vengeance coming into play, which no doubt will result in the harming of innocents.
But liberty? There are a million instances in which more liberty is not preferable. Some of the best examples are the most cartoonish. This allows for easy caricatures of, let’s say, the libertarian position(small aside: for some reason I get the feeling our culture has deemed caricatures unfair or unreasonable or unbecoming of a polemicist, but I find caricature to simply be the comedic amplification of otherwise small or unseen flaws.) Caricature works so well on liberty because the proponents of liberty claim her to be not just the bell of the ball, not just the prom queen, but a Goddess far beyond criticism.
Liberty is only as useful as the people yielding it are benevolent. The madness of our current societies position is that somehow people lack liberty. My own life is direct proof that people are as free as they have ever been, yet most people waste it. Never has more liberty been put to waste in the entirety of human history, and it is not even close.
When most of us are young, we have a choice as to how we want to spend our time. When I was 15, I passed my days at the local trap houses watching drug deals go on, watching young teenagers and the occasional misplaced adult partake in recreational drug use. I rarely partook, not once with the hard stuff(anything beyond marijuana.) During this time most of the kids I went to school with were putting time in at the gym, getting bigger and stronger for their respective sports. I wasted that entire year watching other people waste their time and poison their bodies. Why did I do this? Anger, self-righteousness, self-alienation, I don’t know quite why. But the point is that I was free to spend my valuable time how I wanted, and I alone chose to waste that first year of high school wallowing in self-pity.
And it was only me that decided to get my shit together my sophomore year, stop watching Andrew and Anthony snort prescription pills, and improve my craft of track and field. It was me and only me that worked hard enough to make it onto my college track team. It was me and only me that decided to use my liberty after college to take a job overseas teaching English to Taiwanese kids. Amongst my coworkers and fellow Americans, I was one of the very, very few who decided to learn Chinese, adding an invaluable and life-changing skill. The same goes for my decision now to come to Kiev.
All of these people rioting in the streets, looting, throwing themselves into radical politics are just as liberated as me. They could have devoted themselves to an instrument, a language, a job overseas where they could discover a new culture, a local book club, carpentry, wood work, knitting, jogging, welding, masonry, coding, shooting, mathematics, amateur chemistry, drawing, painting, brewery, cooking, baking, investing. But they didn’t. They’ve used this precious liberty, the ability to do ABSOLUTELY ANYTHING with their lives, quite literally anything, and joined a cult instead. Instead of creating meaning in their own lives with some semblance of vision, bravery, hope, faith, and hard work, they took the cowards way out and adopted a political ideology, adopted a lifestyle with a set of pre-decided beliefs and answers for difficult questions.
In yet another instance of painful irony, libertarians have entered an infinite feedback loop where what they’ve decided to do with their liberty is….advocate for liberty. Liberty, for liberty’s sake!
As if being liberated is in and of itself an end!
Here is an interesting question to pose: As the United States work to “liberate” the women of Afghanistan from a relatively oppressive traditional culture, has anyone bothered to ask if the men want to live in such a society? Moreover our culture has done an amazing job at making it culturally acceptable for a father to liberate himself from the responsibility of fatherhood. Liberated from the oppressive chains of patriarchy! Bravo, men of liberty.
Liberated from religious bondage, half of our population, without haste, chained themselves to the closest rock: woke paganism. Tell me, again, how desirable absolute liberty is? Please….
The jig is up. Liberty is only as Good as the population wielding it is patient, hard working, focused, goal oriented, determined, passionate, faithful, Forgiving, Loving, and Just.
To any honest commentator, the truth has become clear; impatient, lazy, scatter-brained, lost, indecisive, spiritless, faithless, Vengeful, Hateful, and Unjust people will always waste the liberty this world has afforded them. Liberty is a means by which greater ends are reached and cannot be reasonably considered to be a desirable end in and of itself.