James Leroy Wilson's blog

Monday, June 13, 2005

Harry Browne on Peter McWilliams

Part of an ongoing series of posts on Peter McWilliams, the writer and Drug War victim who died on June 14, 2000. From Harry Browne:

Despite his somewhat flamboyant public personality, Peter was a gentle, sensitive soul. He exhibited a tolerance toward his enemies that would have made a saint proud.

Someone once asked him why, since he was living on borrowed time anyway, he didn't get a gun and take some of the Drug Warriors to the Hereafter with him. Peter replied:

My enemy is ignorance, not individuals. It is winning the war of ideas -- through fact, logic, persuasion and, yes, humor -- that brings about lasting change.

What we are facing today in America is not an evil dictator like Hitler, who is the head of a snake and whose removal will kill the snake -- but overgrown bureaucracies like the Drug War, which is more like an anthill. No matter how many individual ants you kill one at a time, the colony goes on.

Any idiot with a gun can kill. It takes clever perseverance to make lasting change.

As has been proven time and again, to alter the government in this country does not take violence, but education. My job is to get the country back into believing and living under the supreme law of the Constitution, not to kill those who are leading the country astray.

I support the high road of truth, facts, debate, and education even if I'm not able to walk that road much longer and even if lies, deception, repression, and ignorance are the direct cause of my death.

Peter was a wonderful example -- not just of tolerance, but of effectiveness. He taught us that the battle for a free, libertarian America is too important to indulge ourselves by being venomous, snide, patronizing or violent toward our opponents. We must keep our heads, be patient and help Americans understand how the government and the Drug War are hurting them.

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