Traveling north through Georgia up highway 11, we came into a small town, Monroe, named for the US government president James Monroe. As a small town, the people were typically friendly and polite, as well as living amongst the classic beauty of historic buildings. On the northern end of the town, we noticed a bunch of oils being sold on the side of the street and I took the time to take a break and investigate this potentially counter-economic business. There was a wide gravel lot behind the oils, with a nearby local convenience store, necessary for refreshments from the hot sun. Looking around, I noticed goods besides oils and fragrances, from hats and shirts to incense. A hand-painted sign for the street vendor was available to the side furthest from the convenience store.
Often times as a voluntaryist, looking back on centuries of history with little progress, or the state of contemporary society, one can become discouraged. Struggling forward, for a new society, can seem daunting. This is one reason we need for solidarity and mutual aid amongst ourselves, not just for protection from the state, but for encouragement. And there are many forms of such encouragement, from reflecting on past successes, to music, to working on a new project. For, despite the lack of progress, change is gradual and step by step, individual. And each step forward is one step closer to our dream of a society without systemic violence.
Just hours ago, wearily traveling in a new city, out of cash and hungry, my brother Edward and a friend stopped to ask for food and/or work to get by while in Savannah, GA. When asked to leave the shopping center they were resting at, they stopped to buy food at a Subway before vacating the premises. Edward remained outside with his puppy while his female friend bought food but before they could leave, police entered the scene to harass them for earlier panhandling. Edward’s female friend was not harassed since when the police arrived she was not sitting outside on the sidewalk, which in some cities can be construed a crime itself. Edward was arrested for disorderly conduct and for panhandling, one “crime” used as a police officers catchall, the other a petty, victimless crime harming no one, neither of which warrant indefinite caging.
On the way out of Keene, I headed straight for Manhattan to join Andrew Voluntaryist Valish and others in a solidarity protest we’d organized and merged with several other egyptian-american protests. It was a rainy day, but approximately fifty protesters showed up. The local egyptian-american community was quite supportive of their native egyptians, though it was very nationalist. Besides the nationalist egyptian community, supporters were ideologically diverse, from one guy talking about the Illuminati, to anti-war activists, from Socialist Action, to us voluntaryists.
Demonstrating the amount of liberty-friendly folks to be found, I forgot this encounter in yesterday’s post. On the way out of Miami, I received my second motorcycle ride as a hitchhiker. This bike was much lighter than the first bike, and I had a heavier backpack than before, so I had to focus rather hard on balancing myself for safety. Unlike the first biker ride, this one was counter-economic since its forbidden to not wear a helmet if you’re over 21 and refuse to show proof of medical insurance in Florida. I refuse to participate in the corporatist medical insurance racket and instead take responsibility for my actions. He took me up to a weekly biker meetup with his daughter and a couple friends of his, where we began discussing the world’s economy, giving myself time to discuss silver and alternative currencies such as TozCash, Shire Silver, and Delvalley Silver, as well as my avoidance of the legal corporatist-statist economy. He was an electrician and informed me of the silver available in breaker boxes, of which he kept excess when he didn’t need to use it in his job. And kindly enough, he bought me food and drinks.