Good People Must Be Dangerous People

Universal and primal, few emotions influence our politics as fear does. The reason for this is simple.

Politics is more or less the enterprise of adjusting social institutions so as to facilitate peaceful coexistence—i.e., mitigate potential violence—between human beings. 

Government of any sort is an affirmation of this truth, for what is government other than a vast oasis of power, an organized apparatus of weaponry that exists so that the few who control it can instill the fear of violence in its subjects?

Of course, nongovernmental actors also appeal to violence explicitly or implicitly in their interactions with other citizens. Black Lives Matter and Antifa are the most glaring recent illustrations of private actors using overt violence to impose a political agenda upon others, while the agents of “cancel culture” use violence more subtly. They apologize for and actually encourage the thuggery of their street counterparts by singling out dissidents for all manner of abuse.   

Why? Simply put, these self-styled “antiracists” and “antifascists” know that they stand to gain material, moral, and political advantages from the white people they brand “white supremacists.” 

If this weren’t true, then we would expect Black Lives Matter and their supporters to descend upon places like South Central Los Angeles and other formerly black-turned-Hispanic neighborhoods where, according to such self-styled “Hate Watch” organizations as the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), a campaign of “ethnic cleansing” and “anti-black terrorism” has been prosecuted by Hispanics against native black residents for decades. 

And during the BLM riots of last summer when citizens of all racial backgrounds across the fruited plain were joining together and taking up arms to protect their communities against the ravages of vandals, Hispanic gangbangers in places like Chicago distinguished themselves on account of their zeal: They not only bludgeoned and shot at black criminals, they also terrorized law-abiding blacks who happened to reside within or pass through the Barrio. 

Brown Supremacy? 

And yet—and yet!—to this day, we still hear not a peep from BLM, Antifa, or any other “antiracists” and “antifascists” about the horrors of “Brown Supremacy.” From Beast Mode to Bitch Mode in a millisecond—the change on the part of “antiracists” is as profound as it is rapid when the offenders of their creed are not white women walking their dogs but brown gangbangers who mean to purge blacks from their neighborhoods. 

The deafening silence is not difficult to understand: Those fearless social justice warriors (SJWs) know Hispanics would end their shit before it even got started. 

Thus, the conspicuous absence of any of BLM’s characteristically disruptive activities in the barrio. 

The thing speaks for itself: Fear is the only language the violent comprehend. Neither the “mostly peaceful protesters” nor their virtue-signaling advocates throughout the Establishment are the least bit interested in engaging in battle with “brown supremacists” because they fear having their asses handed to them. Plain and simple. 

Nor will there be a scintilla of “brown guilt” on the part of these Hispanics after they’ve splattered the streets of their communities with the blood of BLM, Antifa, and any other agitators who come to “demonstrate.” 

Fear Drives the Silence that Ends Violence

That fear is the fundamental driving force behind the politics of contemporary Western societies can be seen everywhere—if only the rest of us muster the will to accept it. 

Hispanic gangbangers aren’t the only ones SJWs refuse to confront. BLM and their allies also fear the most egregious violators of black lives: black criminals.  

Contrary to the conventional wisdom, this woke refusal to call out Bloods, Crips, and other black lowlifes has nothing to do with racial loyalty on the part of black proponents of BLM, or “white guilt” on the part of white liberals. The brutal, relentless attacks that SJWs launch against blacks who are conservative is sufficient to prove this point in spades. 

No, “antiracists,” black, white, and other, know that heaping abuses upon Clarence Thomas and Candace Owens will garner no reprisals. Black abusers can appear racially authentic and, hence, hope to immunize themselves against suffering the same abuse by their peers. White and other abusers can similarly hope to shield themselves from charges of racism by expressing sympathy for racially authentic blacks.

Hell, even Maxine Waters and her sycophants aren’t willing to “get up in the faces” of all “white supremacists,” or “punch” all Nazis in their “faces”—but only law-abiding whites who don’t vote for Democrats. Members of the Aryan Brotherhood and other gangs who subscribe to a white power ideology wouldn’t so much as be looked at cross-eyed by any BLM sympathizers. And for good reason: Any “punch a Nazi” campaign that wound up on the doorstep of, say, the Aryan Brotherhood would end with the campaigners being carved up like a turkey and their remains fed to dogs.  

This goes also with the mostly white members of all outlaw biker gangs and such organized criminal organizations as the Russian, Italian, and Irish mobs—somehow, none of these whites ever seem to have the slightest trouble with either Maxine Waters or any other “antiracists.” 

The fundamentals of Islam contradict SJW values at every turn. And yet SJWs reserve their hostility for Christianity while uttering not a critical peep about Islam. Why? Well, they know damn well that the Falwells, the Robertsons, and the Grahams of this world aren’t going to behead, or so much as curse at them. Militant Muslims, in stark contrast,  won’t hesitate to issue fatwas on their asses. 

Dangerous Men Are Free Men

That America’s founders bequeathed to future generations the Second Amendment is all of the proof we need that they grasped the truth of this claim. And it is the Second Amendment, i.e. the codification of the right of all people to defend themselves against the violent, that they proposed as the solution for decent people.  

If they were alive today, the founders would insist that decent folks who want to live good lives and protect themselves, their loved ones, and other law-abiding citizens in their communities from danger most definitely not follow the example of “conservative leaders,” whether in government or anywhere else, who are only interested in adjusting their bowties, wagging their fingers, and shrieking and crying over the Left’s “double standards” while conning their constituents into thinking that they are “fighting the Left.” 

Conservatism, Inc.’s leaders are looking out for themselves. Their standard operating procedure is the stuff of wusses and whiners—but certainly not winners. Decent people, and decent men specifically, know that in the last analysis, it is they and they alone—and not, as those in Big Conservatism would have us think, state agents—who are the last line of defense protecting innocents from predators. This being the case, the decent know that they must become ruthless. 

They must become the stuff of nightmares—but the nightmares of bad and dangerous people. The only thing necessary for bad men to triumph is for good men to do nothing, Burke memorably noted. Yet good men, as Jordan Peterson correctly observed, must be dangerous men.  

To this end, the good man must spare not a moment to train, in both body and mind, to become the monster that he may need to become in order to slay the monsters that prey upon the vulnerable—whomever these monsters happen to be. 

To put it another way, decent folks—if their goal is to defend themselves from violent attackers—must avoid training in any “combat” sport. The Second Amendment, after all, does not exist for the sake of protecting citizens’ right to go to a shooting range, to hunt, or to otherwise engage in gun-related games. It exists—and let’s be blunt—to protect citizens’ right to kill those who would harm them and their own. 

Unless the right to defend oneself is exercised, all other rights are fakes. Fear and violence are the butter to the bread of our politics. The founders knew it. 

It’s time for decent people who want to make themselves into good people to acknowledge this basic truth—and act upon it. 

About Jack Kerwick

Jack Kerwick earned his doctorate degree in philosophy from Temple University. His areas of specialization are ethics and political philosophy, with a particular interest in classical conservatism. His work has appeared in both scholarly journals and popular publications, and he recently authored, The American Offensive: Dispatches from the Front. Kerwick has been teaching philosophy for nearly 17 years at a variety of institutions, from Baylor to Temple, Penn State University, the College of New Jersey and elsewhere. His next book, Misguided Guardians: The Conservative Case Against Neoconservatism is pending publication. He is currently an instructor of philosophy at Rowan College at Burlington County.

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