TOTW: Tents, Big & Otherwise
I often talk about anarchy as being a big tent in which we (anarchists) all congregate. I didn’t come up with the metaphor, and will ignore the holy roller revivalist implications of it for the time being. I see the anarchist space as being somewhere where we are all milling about, eyeing each other suspiciously. The Green Anarchists are over in their corner, probably having a drum circle or skinning a caribou or something, but sometimes mingling with the insurrecto-types and the nihilists. The Reds are in another corner, arguing about whether we should immediately communize everything (the insurrectos who wander over there for a beer often take a second to argue this point strongly) or work through syndicalist methods. The individualists are doing their own thing (or hanging out wherever is most interesting to them. Noam is probably outside the tent telling people that it isn’t actually the anarchist tent at all…
I can describe and perceive of anarchy in this way, and will probably continue to, which means that I share a tent with some people I don’t like very well at all, but there are a lot of other people who want to clearly pitch smaller tents and declare themselves anarchists, and the tent they inhabit THE Anarchist Tent (the only real one, despite others also claiming such).
Clearly there are some people who use the label anarchist who are not in our tent, like national anarchists and anarcho-capitalists (both of which are oxymoronic, or maybe just moronic) positions to hold. Me question is about the tents. How do you determine who is and isn’t in the tent with you? Do you see a need to agree with everyone in the tent? How small (or big) is that tent?