Monday, May 25, 2009

An Open Letter to My Democrat Friends

May 25, 2009, Memorial Day

Dear Friend,

I would like to start this letter by thanking you for opening my eyes and my heart to the horrors experienced by people in this world less fortunate than we are. You loved me enough to share the truth with me and trust that I would understand. Your compassion inspired me to rekindle the kindness that I'd buried deep inside me long ago.

You helped me transform myself from a Republican to a Libertarian. Later, after I saw the inherent contradictions in the Libertarian party candidates, I became a "little-l" libertarian and now an anarchist. I am an anarchist because you helped me understand there is no justification for initiating force, but it is the nature of government to initiate force.

You and I have fallen out of touch, but I carry you with me everywhere I am. You are in my heart – inspiring me to be myself, to have the courage to face the day and do what I know is right.

But on this Memorial Day, I'm confused.  You were a vocal advocate for peace during the GWB administration, and now you seem very silent. Please help me understand why you are not fighting as vocally for peace as you were in 2003. Please help me understand your current thoughts about the choices the US continues to make with respect to violence in our world:

1) What do you think of the Obama administration's actions with respect to Guantanamo Bay prisoners? I refuse to believe you would support their continued failure to charge prisoners with crimes; I refuse to believe you would support their failure to treat these people as human beings.

2) What do you think of the Obama administration's policies with respect to Iraq? I refuse to believe you would continue to associate yourself with a government whose stated timetable for stopping the occupation and violence in that country occurs in 2012, nearly four years after last year’s election. 

3) What do you think of the Obama administration's decisions to give immunity to the people who tortured prisoners and to protect those who authorized the torture? I refuse to believe you would support anyone who would torture or support torture.

4) What do you think of the Obama administration's choice to spend billions of dollars bailing out crony capitalist bankers and continue ignoring the violence against people in Darfur? I refuse to believe you would support favoring the crony capitalists with more riches while ignoring the victims of violence who are poor.

5) Do you still call yourself a Democrat?  If so, please help me understand why you would associate yourself with this administration. 

Please join me in my advocacy for peace. You kindled the light in me, yet ever since Obama was elected, it seems like I'm a lone voice barking in the wind. The good people of our world need us now more than ever. Will you join me?

In Peace and Love,



  1. I like that you have used the K word- "kindness". Not a trait commonly associated in the mind of "the public" with big or small L libertarians. You have hit upon one of the reasons I have gone from an Obama-voting Democrat straight to libertarian anarchism. (In my defense, I never really "drank the kool-ade" about Obama. :-) I just didn't see an alternative, then.)

  2. @Joel
    That's interesting about kindness and libertarians. Until this past weekend I hadn't met another libertarian in person, and those who I've met are all very kind... possibly because they are also voluntaryists. I'd like to believe that most libertarians are kind-hearted, so I will assume so until/ unless my assumption is proven incorrect in some cases.

    Thanks for your comments!

  3. My "kindness" comment is probably pretty easily explained by what I said right after that-- that I am coming to libertarianism direct from the Obama/liberal Democrat side. Liberals (and more or less my whole social circle is liberal/left) think that kindness means using the cooperative nature of the state to "help" the "less fortunate". So my comment has nothing to do with whether libertarians/voluntaryists are compassionate or not in fact, but anyone "left of center" has pretty much been brainwashed to believe that if you want there to be no state, then at best, you are selfish and not at all kind, and at worst, you are just plain crazy and/or dangerous.

    I'm just trying to help all y'all to understand how half of the American electorate thinks. :-) And at the same time to realize that there is hope for them to see the light, because I did.

  4. Ah, welcome to the land of the awakened, Joel!