tertium non datur
(originally posted 11/28/2012)
The only people who dislike Cheryl more than the anti-anarchist crowd are the anarchists themselves. You see Cheryl started an Anarchy Club at her school. She did not do so in an attempt to be ironic or as an act of social satire or civil disobedience. She believes in the principles of anarchy and hopes that with the proper organization the movement can take root at her school and flourish.
You can see why the anarchists hate her.
The question is whether or not she is a hero or villain. Of course, first you have to establish whether or not you believe anarchy is a heroic notion or inherently evil. Once you’ve established that you can then decide if it is the ultimate act of rebellion to go against the principles of anarchy itself and make it a club or if you have to simply let the definition of a political belief define it. Those two schisms create four different realities for someone to exist in at her school and those that agree on one point will almost certainly disagree on the other. That is if anyone much cared.
Nobody has joined her club to date but she dutifully starts each meeting with a loud “competition, diffidence and glory!” and then sets about finishing the ever-expanding by-laws.
You wonder, if she was more attractive, would the Anarchy Club be more popular. Or, using that train of thought, if she was more popular would the Anarchy Club be more attractive. Two different questions but no schism. Cheryl is not unattractive, she is simply average. Should I point out the two non-schisms that would be created if she was unattractive?
Hard to tell if there are any true anarchists going to her school. There are the usual lawless students but it’s difficult to say if that is a conscious choice on their part or if it’s just the path of least resistance. Cheryl is certain that none of them are familiar with Thomas Rainsborough, the Revolutionary Insurrectionary Army of Ukraine, the Confederación Nacional del Trabajo or Immanuel Kant so they can talk all the revolution they want but they are no better than the stiffs in the Junior Achievement club.
Ever since she appeared on the local news, who decided to fill up a slow news day with a profile on the girl who started an anarchy club, she gets hate mail. Her parents have had to replace the mailbox twice, repaint the garage door after vandals spray painted a capitol A with a circle around it followed by the letters “s-s-h-o-l-e” on it and regularly have to wash eggs off the windows.
She seems to be unaware of the irony in acts of civil disobedience being carried out against her, someone with a completely clean rap sheet, because she supports the idea of a stateless society based on non-hierarchical voluntary associations.
The real problem for Cheryl has been the real anarchists pleading with her to stop. The hard-boiled crowd. Whether they are extreme individualists or complete collectivists, anarcho-communists or anarcho-syndicalists, libertarian anarchists or no-card-carrying-required anarcho-syndicalist labor union members, they all write impassioned letters imploring her to cease and desist with the club.
If the proverb “the enemy of my enemy is my friend” holds any truth then it makes you wonder how many friends Cheryl really has.
Her parents and her guidance counselor wonder the same thing.
But every Monday the flyer announcing the next meeting is taped up to the school bulletin board and every Tuesday at 3:30 she sits in the empty classroom and starts to jot down the minutes of the meeting. She will pause every now and then and look out the window. Right outside there is a large tree and often times the two squirrels that live there will be chasing each other around the branches and she will get a large smile on her face.
Then it’s back to work.