Big Head Press

L. Neil Smith's
Number 525, June 28, 2009

Remember, when seconds count,
the police are only minutes away.

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The Bloody Sun
by A.X. Perez

Attribute to The Libertarian Enterprise

My addiction to science fiction goes back to the early-mid Sixties. Like many who got started on SF back then I discovered Andre Norton and one of the first books I read by her was Starman's Son (AKA Daybreak 2250 AD). It got me started on the literature of those who didn't quite belong in the world they were born into, the people who had to overcome exclusion, the people who had to face the difference between professed values and and the way society actually worked. In a word, it left me, like I'm sure it left others, predisposed to hear the libertarian message.

In the mid seventies my taste for Norton's works led me to get started on Marion Zimmer Bradley's Darkover novels. The first two I remember reading are The Bloody Sun and The Sword of Aldones. Both dealt with the struggles of persons caught between two worlds, neither of which really fit them. Just right to hook a Norton fan.

There is one phrase used in several of Bradley's books that I find quite charming, "You are not the keeper of my conscience." I guess if there is one thing I want to tell political, religious, and cultural leaders when they overstep their bounds is "You are not the keeper of my conscience."

Weapon laws can be dodged. It takes a real effort for tyrants and would be tyrants to really interfere with most of us going about our daily business (You can hear Sylvester Stallone in the background saying "Just wait, You're still young,"). And there is an objective system of right and wrong which most of subscribe to. However, it is amazing the number of famous and not so famous people who try to dictate our behavior on how to apply that code and even tell us to junk the code. Not just that it's OK to junk the code, but command us to do so.

It is time for us to tell them, "You are not the keeper(s) of my conscience."


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