Posted 5 years ago on Feb. 10, 2012, 8:36 p.m. EST by darrenlobo
This content is user submitted and not an official statement
In the official narrative, the question always concerns whether anyone and everyone but the state should engage in violence. The question of whether the state should engage in violence, or whether state violence should be evaluated in terms of the same standards of reasonableness as violence by nonstate actors, never crosses the threshold of visibility. The legitimacy of violence by the state is never even articulated as an issue.
That’s a shame. The state is not a mystical entity, a sum greater than the human beings making it up. The state is simply a group of human beings cooperating for common purposes — purposes frequently at odds with those of other groups of people, like the majority of people in the same society. And violent actions by an association of individuals who call themselves “the state” have no more automatic legitimacy than violent actions by associations of individuals who call themselves “the Ku Klux Klan” or “al Qaeda.”
The violent actions of the state deserve to be evaluated using the same criteria by which we judge the morality of the violent actions of any other grouping of individuals.