I’ve tried to deny it these past few months, but I know exactly what is becoming of me: I’m turning into an anarchist. A labor-movement-loving institution-hating (institutions including schools and churches and courts and even npr….) no-excuses-for-anything anarchist. I’ve tried to deny it and fight it, but the other day a friend said they couldn’t figure me out: Clearly I care a lot about politics, but the things I say don’t sound communist or socialist – what do I consider myself? And I finally admitted it out loud. Baby, I’m an anarchist.
I talked to my friend about it. He is a well-read organizer whose opinions on such things I value. I said, “Gabe….I have to tell you something that I suspect. I’m not really sure, but…I think I’m an anarchist.”
And he just looked at me and said, “you didn’t know?”
“What do you mean ‘you didn’t know!?’”
“Yeah, I guess it’s like being gay. A lot of times other people know before you do yourself. And you obviously are….”
I’m still in denial just a bit. But oh god, so much of what I read about anarchism and and anarchists just seem so right. Part of the reason I’m reluctant to really make this claim is that….I’m scared? Mostly of not being taken seriously. Partially of being wrong, I guess. But the other half the reason I’m reluctant is that I really have only begun to learn about anarchism. So I just have a lot more research to do before I can say it comfortably. It takes quite a bit of emotional effort for me to label anything – relationships, political affiliations, whatever.
This feels important enough to write about for some reason. Maybe because for so long, I feel like I’ve settled as far as what I really want for people goes. I’ve lied to myself and others, saying I think that if we elected the right people and made the right laws, I’d be happy. Well, I would be happy. But I would not be satisfied. Why should the fear of impossibility stop me from trying to achieve what I truly believe in?
I will never get to read everything I want. Emma Goldman.