When I was a kid, I used to get National Geographic every month – and like most boys, I immediately scanned its contents for Amazon boobies. (This is how I learned what an essential technological advance the Wonderbra really is.)
Scattered around these swinging boobs were strange stone statues that looked sort of like comic book characters. These pygmies would sometimes kneel and pray and chant and sing to them, which always made me smile.
To them, it was a powerful and eternal god – to me, it was just – well, a giant stone cow. There are over 10,000 gods around the world, which look pretty ridiculous to just about everyone. If you weren’t raised with them, they have no emotional resonance, no mythological power. They just look sort of like breakfast cereal cartoon characters gone wild…
About 50 times a day, I am asked how we are going stop using hierarchical violence to slowly destroy our world, our economy and ourselves, and start building peaceful and voluntary solutions to complex social problems. The answer is very easy.
Every moral evolution in history has been preceded by incomprehension – and followed by incomprehension. Slavery, the subjugation of women and children, the denial of property rights – all seemed perfectly normal until they were vanquished – and afterwards, it is hard to believe that such evils ever existed at all.
The same goes for a stateless society – it only looks impossible because a truly free and peaceful society has yet to be achieved – but once we get there, people will look back at governments as ridiculous, bloody and evil hangovers from the primitive and drunken adolescence of our species. Your government cannot protect your property by stealing half of it first. It cannot protect your life by threatening you with endless violent edicts. It cannot protect your money by forcing you to use a currency that it counterfeits at will. It cannot protect your children by sealing them up in 18th century mental prisons for years, while selling their futures off to the highest bidder…
Foreign gods always look silly – and statism is just another religion. Statism has its churches, its symbols, its deities, its rewards and punishments, and it relies on the control and abuse of children – the parallels are obvious and endless. So – how do we end statism? Well, exactly the same way that we end religion. By revealing it as just another giant stone cow.
If you don’t grow up kneeling beneath the grim shadow of some foreign god, it looks ridiculous, and so has no power over you. If you don’t grow up speaking Esperanto, it just sounds like gibberish. To save the world, to free the world, to end war and imprisonment and abuse and torture and indoctrination and enslavement – and the taxes and debts that enable all such evils – we need to stop teaching our children the language of the state. If we raise our children without aggression, without raising our voices, without raising our hands, without bullying, without control, without punishment and manipulation – with gentleness and firmness and love – they will never fear authority, they will never submit to a brutal hierarchy, and they will never accept the moral authority of those who call themselves “the state.”
Our children will clearly see the evil foolishness of institutional violence, because it will come as a shock and a surprise to them – instead of, as is so often the case now, an inevitable extension of how they are raised. Violence is a language we must unlearn – the only path to a peaceful future is to never teach our children that language to begin with. Then – and only then – all the ugly bullying and violence and control and herding and kidnapping and imprisoning and counterfeiting and indebting and enslaving and worship and fear and obedience will no longer be charged with the power of myth and the petty religion of nationalism – the “state” will just be revealed as a silly superstition, a comic book god, a primitive hangover – nothing to be worshiped or obeyed or revered, or even feared. Just an old and dangerous toy we have outgrown.
When that great dawn comes, when myth falls from delusion, the state will be revealed as just another giant stone cow, which we can all leave behind, in the jungle of history it came from, and where it damn well belongs.
By Stefan Molyneaux