miercuri, 26 august 2015

Which 'us' is the state?



It is easy to discover that apart from its geographical place the identity of a country mainly consists in a bundle of myths and legends. There are myths because the main character of all the statements on the authority of the state is a fictional one. The state is not as concrete as his geographical position and it is self-contradictory to say that is identical to the people who live inside its borders, since the people speak against it whenever they consider that the authorities act in abusive ways. Moreover, the authorities say that they represent the state, not that they are the state.

However, the state is most often considered to be a mythical ‘us’. The people who speak against it are unsatisfied that it is less ‘us’ than they expected to be. Thus, they may protest that the mission of state to protect them from internal and external enemies is not fulfilled in their interest or that the civil rights do not protect all of ‘us’, especially the individuals hardly to be numbered among the majority of people.

Shortly, the people unveil the myth of ‘us’ for pointing to some real ‘us’.

To some extent, such protests are useful, because they prevent the authorities which claim to represent the state to not figure out that they are that ‘us’ and to act as such against the rest of the people.

On the other hand, the protests contribute to a great misunderstanding of the identity of state, forcing to bring the mythical ‘us’ to the concrete ‘us’ of the community of the protesters. They cannot be the state either, but they downgrade the myths of the country in a conflicting affair between individuals. There is not a national defense or the justice which guarantees the respect of civil rights anymore, but only brutal and cruel soldiers and police officer or unjust judges. Since the authorities has generally a weaker voice in the public space than the protesters, the men who represent it may easily to cease to act in the name of the mythical ‘us’,  and to search for being a part of the concrete ‘us’ of the protesters.

However, the ‘us’ of the protesters which sometime succeeds in attracting the authorities on its side leaves out those other citizens of the state who do not speak against the state, but expect that it will always act in the name of the mythical ‘us’. Many times, those silent citizens are more than the vocal ones, but they have to obey to a state that could become a paramount voice of the minority of protesters.