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Freedom to Choose? How About The Freedom to Live

Freedom without responsibility leads to a dangerous, degenerative world.

In seeing more articles of anti-vaxxers harassing restaurants in Vancouver this morning because of the vaccine mandate, I started pondering more about what is psychologically going on in their heads to make them think and react in this way. And it made me realize that something way, way deeper is going on inside them, beyond what they are saying on the surface of their arguments.

Their number one argument is that society is not respecting their choice to not get vaccinated, thus society is trying to “control” them and making them feel like the Jews in “Nazi Germany” (as quoted in the article linked above).

Yet what I find amazing about their mindset is that it shows just how selfish they are in not respecting other people’s lives by not getting the vaccine. This is pretty much the number one thing vaccinated people are saying about anti-vaxxers now. Forget freedom of choice, how about the freedom to actually live your life without someone else carelessly jeopardizing it (especially since younger generations are now the greatest worry, since they can’t be vaccinated yet).

Yet what I find remarkable is how these anti-vaxxers are handling these protests. They are harassing and even threatening people, sometimes with their lives. So yes, it does sound like “Nazi Germany” but with the anti-vaxxers being the ones creating scapegoats (ie restaurants, school boards, and even nurses now) and using intimidation practices on them. Perhaps they need to look in the mirror more and reflect on their own actions.

What’s evidently clear here is anti-vaxxers aren’t just upset about their freedom of choice, they are psychologically feeling like their very lives are being threatened which is why they are responding so angrily and threateningly. The question is why?

For myself, I believe they are undergoing a greater existential crisis that relates to how our world is changing so rapidly and they don’t have the psychological capacity to make sense of it. To cope with the change, they are psychologically regressing back to a lower level of consciousness, which is quite common for people to do during times of crisis, when they feel like they are losing control of their sense of identity and their worldview.

This is why they are acting more authoritarian, angry, and aggressive, because in doing so, it gives back a greater sense of control in their lives again that counteracts what they feel like they are losing. Unfortunately this only speeds up the process of disintegration as I’ve noted before. For example, managers who feel like their organizations are falling apart will become more controlling, thus speeding up the disintegration of their organization because it’s actually their controlling nature that’s causing its downfall and upsetting their employees.

This is the paradox and paradigm shift that people often can’t comprehend about the future. It is a world in which we will be able to take greater control of our lives by reducing the controls in our society. Yet for that empowering shift to occur requires individuals who have a higher degree of responsibility, much more so than today.

And thus we return to where we are today. A world full of people who demand their God given freedoms but without being willing to take any responsibility for those freedoms. This is why we have governments and laws. And it’s why governments have to enforce stupid vaccine mandates, after giving people tons of time to step up and be responsible. Yet when they don’t, when they only think about themselves and are psychologically blind to what they are doing to others, that’s when harsh, strong choices have to be made for them.

Freedom, however, is not the last word. Freedom is only part of the story and half of the truth. Freedom is but the negative aspect of the whole phenomenon whose positive aspect is responsibleness. In fact, freedom is in danger of degenerating into mere arbitrariness unless it is lived in terms of responsibleness. That is why I recommend that the Statue of Liberty on the East Coast be supplemented by a Statue of Responsibility on the West Coast.

Viktor Frankl

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