(My Clovis News Journal column for May 15, 2015)
If you were sitting alone in your own home, would you seek permission to read one of your books? Or to write one? Would you be concerned with whether you are allowed to scratch an itch?
Would you wonder if you need a license to watch TV? Don’t laugh — TV licensing is a reality in Great Britain and many other places.
Might you call an inspector for a permit before you make a sandwich?
As long as you weren't violating anyone's person or private property would you feel guilty about sipping a glass of tea?
So why would you feel guilty about sticking a gun in your waistband, going out to your unregistered car, driving to a friend's house and buying some marijuana- peacefully, without first seeking someone's permission or finding out whether it's allowed?
If you'd feel bad about it, I'll bet it has to do with those things being against the law.
"Laws" are nothing but the opinions of bullies. Opinions thought of as legitimate only because of the power of those bullies to impose their opinions on everyone else through their hired guns. Sometimes their opinions match reality, such as their opinion that you shouldn't murder or commit a robbery.
Most of the time, however, their opinions don't align with reality at all, such as when they hold the opinion you should pay a yearly ransom on your house, get their permission to own and use a car, claim you can't be permitted to buy or sell certain things, or you can't be allowed to smoke anything you want. No one has the right to force their opinion as to whether you can operate a business out of your home on you, nor about what price you can negotiate for anything you are willing to sell-- including your labor.
Opinions called "laws" are always either unnecessary or downright harmful.
The only reason the harmful opinions aren't ignored even more completely than they already are is because of the prevalence of a superstition: the belief in "authority". It's equivalent to a belief in astrology, but is actually much more harmful to the individual and, by extension, to civilization.
As long as your actions don't violate the person or property of another, no one-- not one person on the planet-- has the right to stop you. It's not that you have a right to do those things, it's that the right to stop you can't exist. It's based on this myth of "authority". Even if your actions and choices offend other people, or they use the excuse of "the common good", it changes nothing. Widespread civil disobedience is long overdue.