Call Me an Abolitionist, Please

Submitted by Bill St. Clair on Mon, 18 Dec 2006 11:54:45 GMT  <== Politics ==> 

Glen Allport at Strike the Root - Mr. Allport recommends that we stop refering to ourselves as "anarchists" and start calling ourselves "abolitionists". It is, after all, slavery that we're trying to get rid of. Any kind of coerced behavior is rightly labelled slavery. [root]

Reasons for using this term include:

Accuracy: the world "abolitionist" accurately describes a person who wants to abolish something, in this case the evil of initiated coercion.

Positive connotations: The term was widely used by those who wanted to abolish slavery, and slavery is, of course, merely a specific and extreme form of initiated coercion. This use of the term "abolitionism" is the only one I was familiar with before doing a web search, and I would wager that most Americans have never heard of any other: in a practical sense, "abolitionism" means the movement to abolish slavery. The movement to abolish all intiated coercion -- all forms and degrees of slavery and attempted slavery, large and small -- is clearly a continuation of the original. Positive feelings people rightfully have for the movement to abolish slavery are equally well deserved by those who seek to abolish all forms of initiated coercion. Furthermore, abolishing slavery did not tear the world apart or cause chaos or misery (the Civil War did, but in most nations slavery was abolished without resorting to war. Even in America it was the war, not freedom for the slaves, that caused violence and misery -- and Americans are clear on that).

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