My wife comes from a very conservative family…and of course, she knows I am an Anon. This morning we discussed the idea of whether vigilante justice is ever justified. Her initial reaction was NO.
I then pointed out that most governments have laws, based on the notion that when a person, animal, or group is wronged, there are formal ways of both compensating the wronged parties, and punishing the guilty.
But, it begs the question, what happens when a system (insert Government) is so broken, so skewed to favor the rich or those with influence, office, or celebrity, that they are never punished and
victims are never compensated, never get justice.
I quickly demonstrated via a few links that from Steubenville to most other states, the system is letting police, judges, rich people off scott free to continue victimization of women, children, animals, and men. I know Anons who were involved on the ground in Steubenville, and their anger at the system that did not properly punish the villains in that situation, was both palpable and understandable.
When a policeman is found raping children and / or animals on multiple occasions, or a citizen is outright murdered by a cop, and nothing is done, and this goes on in every state, every day, year after year, it is a fair statement to suggest we are looking at a broken system.
Formal justice was always been predicated on the idea that with a functioning legal system, the guilty would be punished, and the victim, or family of the victim, would be compensated.
Without hyperbole, we can state that our system IS broken. The USA is locking up more people than most countries, and many for simple marijuana possession, while cops who kill, get paid vacations and then are allowed back on the force.
I know it is a sticky question. I was raised in the South where the KKK would round up black men, and hang them from trees, in THEIR form of rough justice.
As with most things, it is not just black or white, left or right, up or down.
That said, we Anons do act, at times, in ways people feel are vigilante actions. But, let’s examine the fundamental idea of what the societal contract is. Laws allegedly exist to protect the weak, to punish the abusers. When the system no longer functions to do that, then the guilty are emboldened to abuse more, and the victims are left WITHOUT justice. Nature abhors a vacuum, and most people, abhor victims who do not get justice.
In the absence of a properly functioning legal system, a popular based system is bound to arise (and did) in which methods ARE found to punish the guilty, and get justice for the victims.
As I pointed out to my wife, if a rich man commits a crime, such as when the bankers at HSBC laundered millions of dollars for drug cartel, not one banker went to prison, but, be a poor black man in Alabama who gets caught with a marijuana cigarette, and he may get his head blown off.
As an anarchist myself, I reject that governments who CLAIMED originally to be delegated authority by “gods”, are legitimate. Current US governments claim to rule by “consent of the governed” and yet in over 60 years, no one asked my consent, and if we look at participation in government as an indication of consent of the governed, such as voting, it is clear that a majority are choosing NOT to participate, and not to show consent to be governed.
And, if you use military and police firepower to exert your control over the populace, how is your “consent of the governed” any different from any dictatorship ? And, if you claim popular vote controls who becomes president, I just direct one back to Bush V Gore election in which, ultimately, it was clear that Gore won the popular vote, and yet, nine robed Supreme Court judges essentially gave Dubya the presidency, in opposition to the will of the public.
Again, for those who believe in the legitimacy of governments, and laws, they would rant against vigilantism, but I assert that when a system is so broken that the poor get no justice, when violators in uniforms regularly kill, sexually assault with impunity, that vigilantism becomes the only justice that victims can place any hope in.
So, we are still sitting with a broken judicial system that gets worse, not better as years go by. In most Supreme Court cases in which a corporation is in litigation against an individual, the corporation wins, and now, we know that corporations can throw enough money into elections to swing the vote in favor of whomever they have bought and paid for. So again, the fairness of such a system is not only called into question, but is fairly clear, that it favors money, not justice.
Thanks for reading this.