We've taken some criticism from people who take the Indiana RFRA at face value, assuming that because it claims to stand for religious freedom, anybody who opposes it is in favor of the enslavement of bakers and florists. This could not be farther from the truth - it is possible to oppose both bigotry, and bad law, and still be libertarian. In fact, we feel it is a moral imperative to do so!!
Bigotry is not "speech". Its source is the heart and mind, not the voice. If we feel that liberty is worth our efforts to persuade and enlighten, why not issues of social stigma as well? It's irrational to leap from freedom of association to a pro-bigotry stance. They represent two very different organizing principles.
The market is proving its power to solve a problem the state created in Indiana. We should be pointing to that and saying "We told you so", not taking the wrong side and shilling for bigots. Unfortunately, many of our allies in the libertarian movement bring with them a vulnerability to deceptive right-wing rhetoric. This attempt to cloak an establishment of religion in "freedom" is one of those times.
There seems to be a lot of confusion among libertarians on how to handle the issue of marriage equality from a uniquely libertarian standpoint. Some suggest that the struggle to remove government from our personal lives requires more than equal marriage rights for same sex couples – I agree with them. Others adopt the all-or-nothing approach of opposing marriage equality now in favor of abolishing state marriage altogether – I disagree with these people.
I want to point out the historical point addressed by this meme: an ideological critique to the notion of inherited power in what is supposed to be a merit-based individualist society. Having power pass from father to son was the legacy of aristocracy and monarchy … It’s impossible to be a Constitutional conservative and want to be ruled by an aristocracy.
The error in reasoning which leads people to believe that Rand must surely be like his father, is the same one which led humans to submit to hereditary transfers of power for thousands of years, and which leads people to believe that entire families of evil human beings named “Clinton” or “Bush” must be great ideas for President!! Confronting that core idea is totally fair game for libertarian activism within the context of a constitutional republic which our founders absolutely never meant to become anything like what they fought to overcome.
The fact that this escaped nearly everybody who saw the meme is just proof of how far we’ve strayed from one of the most important concepts that fueled the revolution that led to our founding. Go read the Federalist/Anti-Federalist documents if you aren’t aware of what a huge thing that was to both sides of the question – all were agreed that aristocracies were to be avoided no matter what; that power should no longer be passed as inheritance, but that it must be earned by merit.
I believe it is very clear, Rand has not earned by merit the loyalty he claims through his father, and a dialogue about that is useful not only against Rand, but against the Clintons and Bushes as well. The thing they have in common was really important to our founders … It should be important to us, too.
Our Chair appeared on the Libertarian Party's official podcast today. Listen in to the second half hour and hear about Outright's "cutting edge activism", our Spirit of '69 fundraising effort, and local efforts in Arizona to decriminalize homelessness and relegalize all drugs.
The whole "get government out of marriage" thing is a bit overblown. The government in fact does have a role in enforcing private contract. So it will continue to be called into disputes which question whether a particular relationship meets the state definition.
For example, you contract with an insurance company whose partner benefits are linked to the existence of a marriage agreement. Let's say you and your same-sex male polyamorous lovers are bound by a three-way contractual union. And then let's say your insurance decides it does not want to split the payout between your two surviving spouses, because Leviticus says wives not husbands.
The court will be asked to determine and set precedent as to whether that contract meets the standard and must be upheld ... those precedents will become a new version of the same old reflection of social norms: some relationships will meet the standard, and some won't, and this is true whether we have a state monopoly on justice or whether we have a polycentric system of NGO providers.
That catchphrase slogan makes good red meat for the libertarian base, but it's kind of meaningless in practice. We can abolish marriage licenses, but the state - or its equivalent - will never be out of marriage.
This past weekend, I attended the 8th annual International Students For Liberty Conference in Washington, DC. I have always felt that Students For Liberty does a great job positioning itself at the ideological center of the libertarian/classical liberal movement. They have routinely featured left-libertarian, conservative-libertarian, as well as anarchist writers and speakers in their materials and speaking engagements. The big-tent approach has obviously worked well for SFL, as they have reached the status as the world’s leading libertarian student organization in only eight years. However, bitter disagreement was still prevalent amongst members of the conference, none more exemplified than by one particular controversy involving former Congressman, Dr. Ron Paul.
You may be familiar with the traditional libertarian outreach tool, the World's Smallest Political Quiz. Well we've got something even more fabulous!! Introducing the World's GAYEST Political Quiz - coming soon to a Pride near you!!
Answer: Agree / Maybe / Disagree
- LGBT migrants from countries where they are persecuted should be given asylum in America.
We are currently raising funds to get some of these WGPQ kits made for Pride season to be utilized as outreach at booths. They are going to cost $50 to $100 each to create a quality display including the full-size quiz, stickers and explanatory printed materials - we would like to place at least one in each of our most active states. Please consider a one-time donation at http://outrightusa.org/joomla25/membership.