Mariner receives correspondence from a number of readers. It is obvious that mariner is not an instrument of change, entertainment perhaps, even a puzzle; but not an instrument of change. Readers, indeed all people without exception, except perhaps easily led nonthinkers, have their opinion, whatever its logical or illogical constructs, and will stick to it. Having principles is a good thing.
What drives mariner to frustration is the incongruity of it all. A few examples:
The US is the strongest and purest version of democracy among all nations. Oddly, it ranks last among the 28 democratic nations with only 47% voting. More than half of the electorate (mariner should stop aggrandizing citizens with that term) does not vote.
Oh, but they carry guns in fear of the government invading their homes and stripping them of security and worth. If one thinks about it correctly, the citizens own the government; the government doesn’t own them. Paranoid bullets won’t even be noticed when confronted by the largest, best trained, highly equipped army in the world. But think what an additional 53% of votes would do to an election. If one doesn’t vote, one can’t bitch. The subset of the paranoid citizens that do vote, vote for an Antichrist just to cause trouble for the establishment.
Mariner understands that the heavily capitalist plutocracy that exists today has screwed the labor class and most of the middle class. But causing lasting pain between US allies and disrupting trade and commerce with an incompetent, uneducated president does not help. Building an irrational and largely useless wall may appeal to a dissident’s paranoia but it comes at an even higher price on civility, equality, and freedom – to say nothing about misspent taxes. This is no time for a king, though it must be entertaining for dissidents to watch the conflagration.
Just as horses and much earlier spears became useless because of advances in technology, bullets are on their way out. Even today new technical processes armed with a dissident’s private information can strip them of everything – who needs the government? Most citizens haven’t had time to contemplate about the new world offered by automation and access to universal information. It is time to evaluate what will change. The change will be the greatest shift in human history.
How can Joe Citizen protect himself from the tech/data giants? (This is a magnitude more likely than the government barging in.) Keep the gun as a souvenir but cherish one’s voting registration – and vote, goddammit!