I recently had dinner with some liberty minded friends. The evening was wonderful and each one of us were coming up with ideas on how to promote liberty among the general public. Each one of us had our own ideas, some political others not. One of the questions that got asked was – Who do you trust?

This was a surprise to me. My answer was to trust every one, until proven wrong. I should perhaps set some context to this. All three of us meeting, were anxious to not only talk about liberty, but make a difference. So the context of the question is who do you trust – because politics or community building is messy business and good partners make all the difference. Liberty lovers have been betrayed in the past. Many a movements start with a “for” freedom agenda and end up being “against” one thing or the other.

My answer seemed natural to me. The political philosophy that thinks that citizens must be free to make their own choices requires trust as it’s basis. If I am to trust my neighbor with firearms and drugs and running businesses from their garages, then I trust humans to behave. If, on the other hand, I ask an outside body to govern everything from security, business, exchange of goods, food consumption and more, then I am a person with little or no faith in the fellow human. Those who call for outside intervention in all things are the wretched souls with no confidence in the fellow man; and perhaps, if dug a bit deeper, in their own selves.

I hear statements like “I am afraid that if we allow no speed limits, there may be more deaths due to accidents”. I see fear as the operating word in that statement. Yes, you are afraid to let people be free. There is nothing stopping a community to set speed limits in their own neighborhoods – or install speed bumps of other ways to protect neighborhood streets to be safe. Why is a state wide or a nation wide speed limit needed for this? Communities, especially here in Florida, that restrict certain actions already exist. One can choose to live in them or not. The difference between a condo with strict rules of conduct and a nation like the US government or even state government, is that one can move out of a condo. It is much harder to leave a country, especially when liberty is at such a premium everywhere in the world. Voluntarism demands that people get to choose their environment – such that opting out is always one choice. When we pass a law – the choice no longer exists. Laws, in that sense, are essentially the opposite of choice.

For those communities that do not want to have alcohol and drugs in their midst, there is the option to create a private community where this can happen. In today’s environment, however, one has to worry about law suites from the highest courts in the land forcing conformity to all citizens. If you want a community that does not allow gay marriages, create one – privately run. Since the membership is voluntary, no gays need live there. In order to achieve this, however, one has to rid the nation and states of their bodies of restrictive laws that force uniformity on all of us.

A true community organizer, then, in my mind is a peddler of self reliance. An empower-er, who inspires people to take charge and run their own lives. One who unites people in order to demand dependence is a community destroyer. Let’s not all walk in lock step with the majority rule, for that is always a method to trample on the minority. Let’s allow each one of us to voluntarily find our own community that fits us best.

And this can only be established by trust. Trust in the fellow man. The desire to control and make people comply is the opposite of community. The desire for all to unite and force something upon others is the opposite of trust. It is force. It is aggression, it is assault, it is slavery.