Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Individual Rights and the Authoritarian State

Via Blazing Cat Fur, in the comments at Small Dead Animals (re. Toronto G-20 protests):

Well Kate, the same question might be asked of you. People stand up for their rights and you have a hissy fit.

Sure Arnie and Kathy and Mike and thousands of other Torontonians could have sucked it up for the greater glory of PMSH's billion dollar photo op. They could co-operate by pretending not to notice when some cops beat up a visiting British journalist.

They could forebear from wearing black.

They could have ID cards hanging from their necks to make the cops tough job easier.

They could leave their cameras, cell phones and backpacks at home.

In fact, if they wanted to really co-operate with the authorities, they could have just stayed inside their own homes. That way the police could easily tell who the criminals were.

There is a strong cleavage within the conservative interest between people who assert that individual rights and autonomy matters and those who believe in order and an authoritarian state.

It is pretty clear which side of that divide you come down on Kate.