Canada is a relatively tame country; our government is not. The parliament is a ravenous, insatiable, ruthless machine. I am comfortable to say I feel very safe surrounded by the neighbours that I am. The friendly culture of my community affords me the peace of mind that I need not fear the quake of violence or malevolent activity.
I cannot say I enjoy the same confidence in our government.
Call it conspiracy, call it fear-mongering, call it what you will, the history and nature of man force me to be leery of any government; ours most of all. It is no secret that aspiring tyrants and dictatorships, eager to introduce authoritarian rule, begin their campaign by removing the people’s ability to defend themselves.* The Soviet Union, Nazi Germany, communist Cuba, and socialist Venezuela demonstrate this point. Radicals fighting for power legitimize outlawing self-defence with various arguments—safety, health, a reduction of crime—but the outcome is always the same. The individual is abandoned, disarmed, and defenceless.
2. Pepper Spray
Now the Alberta Government didn’t ask the Federal Government for much.** As it stands, the possession of pepper spray is illegal in Canada. All we wanted was for the Liberals to consider amending the Criminal Code to allow us to utilize pepper spray in the name of self-defence. The application, of course, was denied (was it ever a question?).
3. Socialism And Self Defence
“You don’t need a weapon; it’s safe in Canada.” tends to be the reply of my opponent when I argue the right of self-defence is vital. On the one hand, I partly agree with him; I do feel quite safe walking down the street in Alberta. On the other hand, I think he’s a fool whom dictators prey on and manipulate for support.
Have you ever wondered why the socialist constantly argues against guns and other tools or weapons for self-defence?
Milton Friedman thought that “History suggests only that economic freedom [capitalism] is a necessary condition for political freedom. Clearly it is not a sufficient condition.”*`
I agree. I believe that free-market capitalism is the most efficient, fair, and liberating, economic system ever discovered. Of course, nothing on Earth is perfect, our species has made sure of that, but I find no other system of trade that is as apt to deal with our shortcomings and struggles as capitalism is. See how people vote with their feet. Are citizens of capitalist nations like America fleeing to socialist nations like Venezuela, or is it the other way round (assuming the Venezuelan government allows people to leave)?
Now, inherent to a capitalist society is the ownership of property. And inherent to the ownership of property is the right to defend it,*`` for we cannot defend what is not ours.
The socialist hates tools and actions of self defence because he wants my property to be his property. He wants my property to be my neighbour’s property. And he wants my property to be my enemy’s property. None of us are to own anything.
Suppose two boys are playing in a “socialist sandbox.” Every toy must be shared because neither toddler owns the toys. Now suppose that the first boy is using the toy digger, but the second boy wants to play with it too. As the second boy reaches to take the toy away, the first engages in “self-defence” and hits the invasive toddler. The sitter rushes our and scolds both of the boys because they weren't sharing—neither could claim individual rights to the digger, and thus, neither had sufficient justification to keep the other from it.
If neither boy “owns” the digger, how can the first justifiably hit the second? He cannot. The second boy taking the digger wasn’t stealing; it was never the first boys’ toy to begin with. But then what would stop the first boy from taking the toy back? This back and forth will occur until the sandbox turns into a play-place of chaos. Certainly, the two might mutually agree (if only for a little while) that sharing the toy is preferable over being scolded, but what about when there are 10 or 20 boys in the sandbox? Even one overbearing child (which there is bound to be) will disrupt any already unstable equilibrium. And what happens when the boys grow up and become more ruthless, less willing to “share,” and are no longer just trying to play together in a sandbox, but raise a family in a famished economy? For what reason should he work to provide if he can freely “share” in what others have already acquired?
The socialist wants to eliminate the term “mine” and replace it with “ours.” He would destroy a man’s right of self-defence because it implies that a man actually owns property.
If the socialist acquires total power, the individual could no longer defend "his" property because it would no longer be his property at all. He would have no real claim to anything, and therefore, could never legitimately engage in self-defence. How can you defend, that is, obstruct another from taking, what must be shared?
This is a horrible future, a dreaded reality. “Why?” is the topic of our next entry.
*Of course, Canada is not an explicitly authoritarian country. But we'd be inexcusably foolish to slumber in a crib of assurance that we’d never become one.
*` See Milton Friedman "Capitalism and Freedom" pg.10
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