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Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Raising Eyebrows at a Peace Rally

"Why are you wearing that flag here?", a confused young man asked about my choice of capes last Saturday at the peace rally in Philadelphia. Since the crowd was basically left, lefter, and far left they seemed only to associate the Gadsden flag with neocon TEA Partiers. So why was this antiwar libertarian wearing it?

The Gadsden flag represents the will to resist tyranny. "Don’t Tread on Me" is about standing up for human rights, not going around the world trampling them. When the Founders raised that flag they did it fighting the mightiest empire of their era. Today, we raise it resisting the American empire, the mightiest in all history. Those who would raise the Gadsden flag while advocating aggressive wars overseas dishonor the memory of the Founders. It’s past time for freedom lovers to reclaim this symbol of liberty!

The fact that the Gadsden flag is mostly in the colors of Agorism, yellow and black, only adds to its the appeal.

The rally happened on Saturday, October 16, 2010. We started at City Hall. The rally moved down Market Street and stopped in front of the South Eastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) headquarters. There, a speech was given calling for more funding for public transportation. Myself and the two other libertarians in attendance, Henry Whitney and Nicole Prosser, quietly moved down the street not wishing to participate in this part of the rally. The march ended at the National Constitution Center where more moving speeches were given and a rapper sang.

Enjoy the video and pictures of the rally below:

More pictures at:


  1. thanks for your efforts...
    in similar vein...remember having YAF(which I was a CA State Director of) rally OPPOSING Gulfwar1 1991...with the libs we had demonstrated AGAINST for years...and having dumb GOPers yelling and throwing things at us..
    and me, by myself with @50 peacnik types vs GulfWar2 vs 1k flagwavers.......was visciously thrown things at, had sign(s) ripped down and hurled venomous hatred at by dumb GOP types..ugh....

    Peace is never popular..especially peace that is not political....

    I have come full circle on this...from militant bombthrowing interventionist to a Christian pacifist...

    Tho dont support condone the New World Order crap either...

    Thanks Darren for showing REAL Courage...

  2. Buen trabajo, como siempre, amigo.

    I find the link to agorism especially helpful. Like "liberal" and "capitalism," "libertarian" has been somewhat co-opted: Bill Buckley called himself one in his autobiography, and the Libertarian Party ran a conservative for president in 2008. I appreciate the challenge to consider the claims of agorism.

  3. Chris,

    I hear you. At one time I even served in the army, now....

    At the weekly peace vigil in West Chester PA one hears the word communist thrown at us a lot. This from people that probably think the income tax is a good thing. You know, the tax Marx advocated in the Communist Manifesto.

    Thanks for the comment.


    Thanks for coming out to the rally, your support is much appreciated.

  4. Great post. I am so tired of the neo conservatives claiming the moral high ground when it comes to patriotism when the actions they support are the opposite of their stated intent.

  5. It still amazes me, Darren, at how many "progressives" continue to not understand that those who seek *liberty* do not want to physically or financially (voluntarily or stolen from them through taxes) support wars. And those "wars" include not just those that are invasive of other parts of the world, but locally as against "terrorism", "drugs", "poverty", "cancer", "obesity", and all the other mechanisms government uses to keep the populace fearful and dependent - the dependence on the hundreds of government agencies and the fear on "them", those insinuated (or outright accused) to be responsible for or contributing to the omnipresent "threats". And of course there is always the underlying fear encouraged (and often even fomented) by government and its supporters that all would be utter chaos - murder, rape, pillage, etc - if the "order" provided by government were not there. However, the nature of human beings does not automatically lead to the conclusion that individuals must be ruled by others in order that there be orderly interactions between them. Unfortunately far too few understand that just as people can become physical adults, so can they become psychological and social adults - if only they are allowed (and even required in the sense that they will not achieve their desires unless they do) to socially mature sufficiently.

    So it is not surprising that many (?most?) of those among your fellow marchers in Philadelphia did/do not link "Don't Tread on Me" with true liberty-seeking. (Unfortunately, it was a visual standard/flag of supporters of an embyonic government against one in existence for hundreds of years; not {yet?} a symbol of individuals against government in principle.) And sad that those who are adamantly against wars conducted by US government abroad approved of "a speech ... given calling for more funding for public transportation"; sad that they are not wider range thinkers. Were that the case, they would realize - as did you and your 2 compatriots at the rally - that "public transportation" is funded by stolen money (taxes) in a longstanding war on fellow residents/citizens (often at considerable distance) who do not want to be publicly transported. (And often, the private production of mass transportation means are hampered via regulations and killed before it can even become viable.)

    "Public funding" for any reason is "war" on those who do not want "it" (or not in this manner) by those who do. No individual or private group could, or probably would, consider this ploy for personal usage - or at least would honestly label it stealing. But far too many lose all semblance of long range wide viewed thinking when the idea of "government" is introduced - backed by the "legal" use of physical force or the threat of it, in the physical and human action areas that the entity declaring itself "government" decides.

    Don't lose heart though, since it is the enforcers of government who are the key! And they are far fewer than the non-enforcers.

  6. Timothy, Thanks for the comment

    Kitty, to take your excellent ideas a step further, they see the evils of this govt yet they still cling to the idea that govt can be good. If only..... then things would be ok. They don't see or refuse to see the horrible nature of the beast. Thanks for the comment.

  7. I was happy to meet Darren and Henry that day. I almost went home because i was starting to get tired of turning down Communist brochures and hearing the calls of my tax dollars going to fund more government projects...Then i saw the yellow Gadsen flag and an "END THE FED, END THE WAR" sign...and was relieved to meet two gentlemen who share my freedom loving, free-market principles...we need more like-minded people to stand up against the wars...and speak out against the insanity of fighting imaginary monsters around the world. Thanks for a nice afternoon guys!

  8. It was great meeting you too, Nicole. Thanks for coming out to the rally.