L. Neil Smith's
THE LIBERTARIAN ENTERPRISE
Number 48, June 15, 1999
Twenty To Life
by Jonathan Taylor
Exclusive to The Libertarian Enterprise
Thank goodness that all-important twentieth birthday is coming up, I
was starting to get really, really worried.
Granted, I still can't legally drink or purchase .44 ammunition or
rent a car or other dangerous things like that reserved for real
adults. And, granted, I've been able to vote and drive and smoke
tobacco for quite some time now. But the Government has safely
ushered me through these dark and trying times, and has been the
Lysol to my disease-infested mind.
But at least my heart can slow back down to its sheltered pre-teen
pace, because I will finally be out of the trying teenage times,
where my mind is a veritable breeding ground for images of sex,
drugs, and violence.
I am finally safe from the Great Satan of American media, rescued at
last by the passing years and the careful guidance of my Uncle Sam
from becoming another gunman who blew up his classmates, saved from
the temptation to perform some dastardly deed because Beavis told me
to, ushered toward the light of responsible adulthood and away from
the dark, deep recesses of things like South Park, Oliver Stone, and
As my president today trotted out yet another child, another poor
innocent victim of American society, a child who nearly fell prey to
an almost certainly bloody and violent video game, I can only thank
fate and the kindly old men up on the hill who took care and watched
over me through the long hard years that led me to be the sterling
upstanding (almost) adult that I am today.
Then again, on second thought and careful reconsideration with my
fragile teenaged mind, piss off. I neither need, nor want, nor asked
for, their protection, not now or ever. I've known the difference
between right and wrong from a very young age - when my parents
taught me - and I've known the difference between fantasy and reality
for a similarly long period of time. And you know what? Watching the
Dirty Dozen didn't have nearly the psychological impact on me as
knowing that I could never buy a Street Sweeper (not that I wanted
one), will probably never own a machinegun no matter how much I want
one and save up my allowance, and can't buy a gun through the mail.
I learned most of these things well after I learned that just because
Tom hits Jerry, doesn't make it OK for me. In between I learned that
I had to go to school because the government said so, no matter how
much I hated it, that I had to drive 55 because it was the law, not
because that was the fastest I could go and still be safe, and that I
had to pay taxes whether I wanted to or not. I learned a whole lot
about right and wrong, and most of the time, the government is wrong.
And I'll be damned if I'm going to let a government that consistently
violates the United States constitution preach morality to me, and
tell me how I need to be protected while my mind is still fragile and
malleable. Hey, I've got an idea! You want to protect me from violent
images? Stop burning and shooting people. You want me not to be an
unwitting tool of a violent and uncaring entertainment industry, and
yet, I should listen to you when you tell me what to do. Is this just
plain hypocrisy or are you worried about the damn competition? And
you know what else? Quit telling me you're doing it for me.
Yeah, I think I definitely like my second thought better than my
first. Belay that thank you, uphold the piss off.
I'm so happy to be turning twenty here soon. At least, after that,
I'll only have to put up with a draconian government; they won't be
doing their rape and pillage act for my benefit anymore.
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