We have a lot to do. We have a lot to work with.
. We can reach out to groups by operating effectively in their local areas, offering instead of more and more governmental hash, clear solutions that reduce instances of violence, coercions and fraud in their day to day lives, thus making them freer and allowing them to learn the benefits of freedom by participating in local projects.
Women’s issues offer us a clear field on which to work. The failure of the State to provide justice to women who are victims of violence, domestic and by strangers, is an issue of freedom. If you cannot be safe in your own home you are not free. Women, who have been abused know this in their bones. They know the shackles of fear. They are constrained and yearn for a freedom they do not even believe possible.
Almost every community in American today has a shelter that must remain hidden to protect women and their children from the violence perpetrated against them. We treat domestic violence as if it were a natural disaster. For this and other problems, the left and the women’s movement have provided nothing but sympathy. But at least they are on record. They do care.
. Domestic violence, sexually predatory behavior against individuals, no-fault marriage law, and the assumption by the State of the right to determine how and by whom children will be raised. Each of these is a question of individual freedom. Each of these provides the opportunity for a visible demonstration of what human liberty and justice can mean.
In some places Libertarian have already taken up proactive community involvement on this kind of issue. In Arizona Phoenix Libertarians headed by Ernest Hancock awakened voters to the hazard faced by women driving from Tucson to Phoenix who had to stop to use the rest room. Theses women were not allowed to take guns with them legally and numbers were raped. Ernie and his fellow Libertarians changed this. The media – and women – know what Libertarians think because they provided a visible demonstration that they cared. Now this same group will be working to place guns in the hands of women the moment that they get a restraining order. Again, this is an effective demonstration of Libertarian philosophy.
Do Americans believe that the vision of the Declaration is accomplished fact? No, they do not. Most Americans, and a majority of women, recognize that it is still a vision. Issues of social justice are the problems that most trouble them. Their solutions to the problems do not help. They are not ideologues and we cannot expect them to act as if they understood the benefits of individualism until these are demonstrated to them in tangible ways.
If the State, in all of its forms, has a morally defensible purpose that purpose is to protect and affirm the right of the individual to exercise autonomy over his or her own existence. Therefore all crimes against individuals should receive political visibility. Solutions to each problem should be supported by principled, well argued policy reforms. These should be enacted at the most local level possible. Libertarians do not exist in a cultural vacuum. We are also fish who are unaware of the water in which we swim.
The interlocking ethnic traditions and practices that make up the common culture of America today subsume a broad variety of viewpoints on almost every conceivable issue. This diversity repeats itself within the Libertarian Party and even more broadly within the freedom movement, that amorphous collation of individuals and organizations each working towards a freer world in different ways.
Freedom is being able to live your life free of the violence, coercion and frauds that are endemic and tolerated in most of the world.
We need to transform the Libertarian Party into the political tool it can and must be by rethinking its form and decentralizing to focus action on the most local level.
We need to reassume the moral high ground by reaching out to those most in need of freedom, women at risk, children, and others who exist in shackles of violence, coercion and fraud. We need to do it now.
If these ideas interest you or you have something to contribute to an ongoing dialogue please contact me at: firstname.lastname@example.org