In the battle for liberty there is not one enemy but two. There is first the ignorant who think they are fighting an oppressive establishment with violence. There is second, a class of the establishment more than willing to let the ignorant carry out their violence in the hope of future control. At the front lines in this battle are the police. They are the keepers of the peace, and a power structure which does not like an overarching oppressive establishment any more than the violent perpetrator. It is not, of course, simply correct to say that the police and the violent perpetrator are on the same side, only that if the violent perpetrator were not also ignorant, then they would see that the police are not on the side of oppression, and serve as protector of the common man’s liberties in the face of others who wish to strip them.
The violence that makes it to the headlines is what gets people’s attention. It is the kind of thing which sells us on psychopaths and a solely black/white divide. But to anyone who has faced it in their community or abroad, a quiet disdain – the ice and not the fire – is the far more prevalent atrocity and more atrocious when it is systematic. This is not something faced by one type of person and not another – and it is a greater difficulty when one is very much isolated, even should they have faith.
Having been thoroughly beaten up by your own concerns of reputation, there comes a time where you must no longer live only in the eyes of your fellow man, but live for you.
I have lived in various lands and mingled with various people and with me now is a shield which fends off all comers from my inner peace. It is something earned with experience and missing in youth (unless egregiously optimistic). The protection may amount to “easy-come, easy-go”, but it is more from the subjective perspective. It is a freedom earned with trial by fire, and an honor bestowed on one from above.
The ability to love, without possessing; the ability to perform to your best, without concern for excellence; the ability to forgive as human and harmless, what society may nonetheless despise – in this you can make for yourself a wonderful world, even should your past experience be grim.
It has always been the will of the people to live free, but the enemy to such aspirations is elusive. Should it be that one try to connect with the people and they, by hint and suggestion, are turned against as one who seeks to subvert their good spirits and intentions, then it is – from my first hand experience – the people providing the hint and suggestion who wish to subvert what is good and not the subject of accusation all. It is the hint and suggestion from the social troll who will end the world in economic ice. Their malice cold, as revenge is wont to be.
People talk, and that holds not for one group or the other, but it is easier to control the talk if you mascaraed as ‘of the people’ though you are against all that is open and good. But in some places hidden malice cannot win. The networks too intertwined, and you are free to be – not this that or the other – but just free to be.
In the Spanish civil war, the Communists and the Capitalists sided with one another against the Fascists. The Fascists won, and led to a repressive regime that lived in relative peace without freedom until the death of Franco. Spain, as a result, did not see the subsequent battle between the Communists and Capitalists, which was to define the latter half of the 20th century. They lived in a bubble of needs met and few aspirations attained, with true liberty – religion not least among them – thwarted.
But Franco did not stop the positioning. He had to, after all, meet with every man’s fate and die. And so the cold war lived in muted form, to the satisfaction of those who run cold – the communists – as opposed to those who run hot – the capitalists. But in certain places the dream of the republic lived. It would come to live in the hearts of former communists as well as capitalists, as the fate of a government of central command was realized in the USSR, not only Spain.
There are still those inclined to socialism, and sometimes they are in the right. Nevertheless, the will of the people is freedom – civil and economic – and there is no place in the world where this will is stronger than in Barcelona. Catalonia has been reluctantly paying dues and homage to Madrid for too long, and it is time for Madrid to realize that they really ought to be more like Barcelona. I have been here for a short time, and I can tell the city is alive and open unlike any I’ve seen. Despite occasional opposing forces at play, it is a city ready to shine to the world. Madrid, you should play along – you have something to learn and gain.