Yesterday was Memorial Day, a day for remembering the proud men and women who selflessly risked (and gave) their lives for their great nation. At least, this is the official story of what this day is about. But even though Memorial Day was established by the State only to reinforce the myth of its greatness and how it is really just “us” – and that we should therefore sacrifice everything for it – there is reason to “celebrate” this day.
It actually makes sense even for an anti-government libertarian to celebrate Memorial Day. It is a day for remembering all the pointless wars fought by the State only to have people killed. These wars, like any war no matter if they were directed against “our own” or people from far away places, served their purpose: they caused destruction, suffering, and death. As a libertarian, I mourn the people who were enslaved by the State and their lives sacrificed for the “glory” of it. They died in vain, literally pushed to their deaths, and their deaths are nothing but proofs of the brutal and literally anti-life nature of the State.
From this libertarian position, however, I also feel a need to make a distinction between soldiers. It should be obvious that there are two distinctly different kinds of people who are enlisted for State-sanctioned murder: there are those who do not have a choice, who are forcefully and brutally enslaved – “drafted” – and cannot escape their being “hired” murderers no matter how desperately they want to. And there is also the kind that voluntarily sign up to “pay their dues” and “do the right thing” for “their country.”
I mourn the former and dedicate Memorial Day to these people – no matter their nationality, ethnicity, class, gender, or whatever – who were ruthlessly sent to their deaths by an untouchable class of political “leaders” who cared not for them, their lives, or their struggles. All wars have been waged for petty reasons; in each and every case a war has been fought to further the power of the ruling class (domestically or internationally), or for the prestige or the “need” for the “leaders” to “save face.” The wars have never been fought because they were necessary; the necessity of war is and has always been a lie, part of the propaganda the populations have been force-fed by their rulers in order to accept death in an inhumane struggle to see other people dead.
I do not mourn the latter, who have chosen to enlist according to the myth of the glory of the State that they have chosen to believe. There is no doubt in my mind that many of these young men and women who willingly put on the uniform and pull the trigger think they are doing the right thing, and there is also no doubt in my mind that many of them think so in utter ignorance. They are, indeed, victims of hundreds of years of government propaganda, of false and empty statements of honor and glory and freedom often repeated by close friends and relatives. How honorable and glorious and free are they not now that they have died in foreign lands while pursuing their quest to kill fellow human beings and destroy the results of human creation?
I do, however, mourn the fact that so many so willingly and eagerly choose to be killers with the State’s sanction. These soldiers are victims too, victims of their own ignorance and the social pressure of their gullible peers, friends and family. These were people who were falsely advised to take employment as murderers for the State thinking it is a glorious career, despite the fact that all people doing exactly so throughout history for losing States have always been condemned as nothing but murderers.
Only murderers on the winning “team” will see their horrible deeds forgiven and even hailed by the deceived and defrauded masses. This is a truth that we are taught in history books if we choose to think rather than just be fed opinions – the loser-killers were always to be loathed villains while the winner-killers would be celebrated heroes. Only ignorance can make you see the latter but not the former; only ignorance can make you believe you will be celebrated and not loathed.
I think about these willing murderers in a way that is very different from how I mourn their drafted colleagues; I pity them because they died for nothing, believing nothing was everything. They chose to believe in and live a lie, while the facts were readily at hand; they chose falsehood before righteousness, justice, and peace.
Memorial Day is a day for remembrance of the horrors of the State and the people executing its orders. It is a day to remember the millions who died for nothing, either ruthlessly enslaved or lured by the State to carry out its horrible deeds. This is a day to remember that the ruling class never have and never will care about the people, and that they consider us all as pawns in a game for power. They are never willing risk their lives or even their properties, but they eagerly send thousands, if not millions, of other people to their deaths only to better their reputation or reestablish the myth of glory for the leaders of the State.
This day is a day to remember those who perished under the yoke of the State and those who so eagerly sent so many to their deaths. Memorial Day should be celebrated to remember the ruthlessness of our rulers, be they claimed to be appointed by god, the people, or themselves.