I will not ‘respect’ authority. I am the only authority governing my life. I may designate that authority, I may consent to be governed, but government can only morally exercise ‘authority’ to the extent that I have have consented. Anything else is tyranny, coercion, slavery.
We live in an America where ‘authorities’ are sickeningly glorified. We lionize soldiers for their service in committing acts of national terrorism all over the world. We thank law enforcement for ‘doing such a tough job so well’ while too often they brutalize, abuse and condemn. We lionize teachers who too often belittle students, disregard parents, and generally just act as prison guards. But the problem here is not the individuals who serve as soldiers, police officers and teachers: the problem is a system that requires the implied or actual use of force to carry out it’s missions. The individuals involved, both as perpetrators and willing accomplices and bystanders, have just been conditioned to believe that all this is normal or OK.
The problem in our society is a fundamental misunderstanding of ‘authority’, and its origin. If our government is made up of institutions that require the use of force against innocent individuals, and which exercise force beyond the authority of individuals, we no longer live in a free country, and we haven’t for a long time.
I HAVE AUTHORITY. The authority begins with me. I will respect my OWN authority, not that fake ‘authority’ created by majorities, and exercised by no better people than me.