A Liberalist Year In Review: Where We Are, and Where We're Going
For many Liberalists, it has been a very interesting, and likewise a very exhausting twelve month cycle. This time last year, most of us didn't really have a name to call ourselves by, any idea of where we were going, what we were doing, or how to actualize the change we wanted to see in the world. Most of us were tangentially related to Carl Benjamin (Alias Sargon of Akkad) through the content he produced in his videos, but otherwise he had little beyond a shared belief in political ideals, and a shared following of his content to bind us together. We weren't even a community, really at the time, just a bunch of individuals who watched one man's work.
It was in mid-January when Carl gave a name to this movement, to the immediate mockery of some, and general disinterest of others, but the rest of us took to the principles he outlined, and saw an opportunity there. Naturally, there have been all sorts of stumbling blocks along the way, as organization of a chaotic force of individuals with little knowledge of one another, and little but philosophical and political principles in common will inevitably lead to. Nevertheless, in a movement that some predicted would peter out hopelessly within three months, there is still a sizable collective of people, many of whom share with one another every day and spread news and ideas.
Many regional groups have sprung up as a result, from the Liberalists UK and the USA Liberalists, to the Liberalists Down Under from Australia, Os Liberalistas in Brazil, De Liberalisten in the Netherlands and Flanders, the Canadian Liberalist Coalition, The Liberalists of Ireland, The Scottish Liberalists, and many others. We've been a fairly busy bunch, organizing protests in the UK and Ireland regarding Chelsea Russel and the Irish Blasphemy Law referendum. The USA Liberalists have started up a weekly live-stream to cover local issues and tackle university level education, and LIA have done their own work setting up this very publication, as well as its live-streaming counterpart hosted weekly on YouTube. We organized a booth at Mythcon to advertise for the regional groups we affiliate and work with, and met many of the folks who inspired us to start down this path together.
We have, of course, also faced our share of hardships; from schisms over fundamental disagreements on how to operate, to constant mockery from those who don't like the message we spread. Some have even apparently taken to spreading propaganda labeling the LIA logo as a "hate symbol" according to eye-witnesses on the London Metro, but we of course expected all of this. The fight against ideologues was always going to be an uphill battle against entrenched authoritarians, as well as nihilists who would rather see the whole thing burn to the ground than do anything to fix it. And, as always, it has been our job to try to navigate the ship in the right direction, to steer people away from these destructive extremes and towards a pragmatic and rational goal that respects the rights of all.
Through all of this, we have built ourselves up under the name and principles Carl shared with us (though he has been rather noticeably hands off towards the whole thing otherwise) and have tried our best to build a better world around us from the ground up. Many of us have had to learn new skills, get out and meet new people, to grow and learn more about the world around us in order to prepare ourselves for this task, and it has been a monumental one. Organizing volunteers is never easy, but we all do our best, and that we have come so far already gives me hope. A year ago, we were nobodies; without a name, without much purpose guiding us towards a better future. Today, we stand poised, organizing a protest against the European Union, outside of their headquarters, where we will demand that the will of the people be heard.
All of this wouldn't be possible if not for you folks who work so hard to make all of this happen. You who donate the sweat of your brow in the long hours you spend volunteering, who freely give your hard-earned coin towards a brighter, better tomorrow for all, and who forge bonds of friendship and solidarity in this ideological war that has broken out around us and possessed our fellow man. To everyone who has helped us get this far, you have my heart-felt thanks for all that you do, and a promise that I will do my best to ensure that your trust in us is well placed. It's been a year full of growth, learning, and struggle, but on the other side, we're better for it, and we hope you stick with us in the future, because in so many ways, we've only just begun.
Pursue liberty, my friends.