But it's Hobbes' observation about the "state of nature," so reminiscent of the kind of Libertarian paradise half our country seems to be longing for, that gets my attention: that repugnance for government, for authority -- that insistence that any law limits our freedom. Without that authority we have no civilization, no culture, no industry but a climate of fear and a war of all against all, said Hobbes in The Leviathan.
As it is in Baton Rouge, so is it in America. Everyone in everyone's face and at each others' throats. Solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short. You've heard those words many times. Against our ruin we create the buttresses of a social contract, a moral, a civil authority and give up a part of our natural liberty that we can enjoy enough security to avoid chaos and enjoy our freedom without undue fear.. We cede some power and make it legitimate and authorize it for our own good. We create laws and we authorize the enforcement of those laws. That's an oversimplification of course but although it informs our American founding documents, that social contract is being portrayed as the cause of our ills rather than the failure of implementing that contract or defining the laws to benefit all rather than some. Some of us believe that racism will always make justice impossible and therefore authority is always to be resisted and with violence.