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Mental Insurrection in TJICistan


I’ve just spent a few minutes looking for an update on TJIC. It’s been six week since Congresscritter Giffords was shot—along with several respectable civilians. It has been a month since the Arlington, MA police decided Travis was an imminent threat to something and suspended his Second Amendment rights.

I found nothing on the current state of TJIC’s affairs. But the event did get reported beyond all the niche blogs (like this one) who consider Travis some sort of kindred spirit.

Hit & Run, the blog portion of Reason Magazine is probably the closest-to-mainstream of all libertarian outlets. They wrote up TJIC’s saga.

The comments on that post devolved much like the comments on the Travis’s original post (and on his follow-ups). People looking for a reasonable compromise suggest that TJIC should be allowed to post his crass awesome rantings, but the timing was wrong for a discussion of when armed revolution is justified. Commenter JD the elder responds:

My political philosophy is my political philosophy from the moment I wake to the moment I go to sleep, from New Year's Day to New Year's Eve. Saying that there are times when it is "not appropriate" to express one's political philosophy, or whatever mealy-mouthed expression you choose, is allowing your opponents to silence you because you hurt their feelings.

I say the immediate wake of something that might have been an act of insurrection is the best time to discuss justifications for such an act. Sure, there will be much more heat than light in the arguments. But you get more participation. Those who do not make a hobby of political philosophy are very likely to see counter-arguments that would not reach them if it were not for a cataclysmic event drawing their attention.

Few minds will change. Changing minds usually takes time. And works best when the passions are calmed.

Such posts as TJIC made, when he made them, tend to linger, if for no other reason than they were so offensive to some. Should the topic of revolution arise in quieter times, the points Travis and commenters made can lead to questioning and doubt.

Then minds might change. Or new compromises can be reached. And that is the best way to avoid more of the violence that nearly every faction hopes to avoid.