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It's Time to Cancel "Karens" - on Both Sides

AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster

Oftentimes, people ask me why I consider myself a (small L) libertarian as opposed to a Republican.  Certainly, I would vote Republican long before I’d ever vote Democrat, but even then, I often feel like my vote is for the lesser of two evils as opposed to for someone or something that governs our lives.  More often, my vote is against something rather than for something.  I find that government is never the right course of action, even most times, in my opinion, in the case of police, fire, and military spending. When it comes to either party, both seem addicted to the bigger government that forwards their agenda.  Whether it is Democrats with their moral agenda or Republicans with theirs, it seems both seek to advance their agenda through “more government.”  That’s a non-starter for me.

Last week, when I wrote on Sha’Carri Richardson’s suspension for smoking marijuana, our comments section seemed filled with numerous idiots who, despite me breaking down the “rules are the rules” argument, stated that the “rules are the rules” and that Richardson deserved whatever punishment was coming her way.  These same people often balk at mask mandates and social distancing requirements, even though “rules are the rules.”  We’ve seen videos of people openly denying these mandates, to the cheers of other conservatives.  Yet, Liberal Karens are quick to call the authorities or the manager to ensure that their “safety” is honored.  Conservative Karens meanwhile are shaking their bobs in disgust at the enforcement of the rules on private property.

Last week my son engaged in a basketball camp here in our city.  During the first day, masks were not required.  That was until a Karen complained to the camp that she felt her child was unsafe with all the unvaccinated children participating.  Nevermind the science (mask mandates only provide a 1.32% advantage, if that), and nevermind the data (only 28 of the more than 63,000 California COVID-19 deaths have been under the age of 18), this woman’s paranoia demanded that everyone else’s child comply with her demands to make her feel comfortable.  Had she demanded all the children shave their heads or that all of them wear orange jumpsuits, for an equally imagined paranoia, she likely would have been told to pound sand.  Yet, because the imagined threat is supported by equally imaginative and incompetent government leaders, we all had to comply.

A very simple principle never crossed anyone’s mind:  If you feel threatened by the virus, don’t go to places you feel threatened. If you’re worried about your kid getting COVID at basketball camp, guess what?  Don’t send your kid to basketball camp.  By now I am sure a lot of you a shaking your head in agreement, thinking we should be rejecting anyone who orders that we comply with their ridiculous demands.  Sure, we should be telling people to eff off, who stamp their feet in demanding we agree with imaginative gender labels or alternative histories that justify their ridiculous educational requirements.  But similarly, we should also temper our own demands for others’ behaviors that do not affect us.

Liberty is a two-sided coin that gives us the ability to live according to the dictates of our own conscience, but then also demands that we grant respect for those same rights for others.  In reality, my feelings about gay marriage are nuanced. I think that any two consenting adults should be able to enter into any agreement they choose to, regardless of how we may disagree with the content.  If someone chooses to change their gender, tattoo their face, or list their pronouns at every introduction, they should have the right to do just those things.  However, while I think we should defend their right to want those things, we should also oppose anyone who demands that we condone or agree with their decisions.  If you want to put giant holes in your nose or earlobes, knock yourself out, but don’t come crying to us when the job market dries up or you have an issue being taken seriously.

While I am sure we can all agree on canceling liberal Karens, we should also want to eliminate the same behavior from within our own ranks.  I certainly disagree with a great deal of modern progressivism, but I also recognize those same traits among modern conservatives.  Society and “God’s Kingdom,” cannot be victims and we shouldn’t be out there touting that they can be.  When libertarians talk about the decriminalization of certain drugs or laws and regulations that don’t create a victim, we aren’t talking about doing away with police or demanding an end to prosecutions for crimes that create a victim.  Instead of being against big government when it hurts us, we should be against big government… period.

Liberty is consistent in that it should grant all the same rights and privileges and not just to those with whom we agree.  Any crime that victimizes another should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, however, any crimes that simply victimize self or some blanket imagined group should be decriminalized.  As a result, we should stop supporting laws and regulations we agree with, simply because they forward our agenda.  Not only will it make us more consistent, but it will also eliminate the hypocrisy in our arguments.  We should cancel Karens, no matter what letter they have next to their name.