About

Libertarian Catholic Saint? LIO Fellow Dorothy Day

Posted on March 1, 2015 at 10:40 AM

The Big-L Libertarian spirit: Dorothy Day.

with MG

At a time when we again learn of new extremisms, vast atrocities, and official conspiracies... it's wise to take heart of the LIO Libertarian spirit--and a great proponent now on-track to Catholic Sainthood, my dear mentor--and frequent and often hilarious lunch companion--LIO Fellow and Old Liberal-Libertarian League associate Dorothy Day.

Day worked on three key tools--a non-punitive or restorative approach; the ideal that people should have an inalienable and untaxed homestead of a few acres as a secure base to use economic systems (sometimes called Catholic distributism: She rejected using legislation, however, or attempting to impose the optional approach on all); tolerance based on a loving heart. Her co-operative/intentional community effort while not a cure-all was essential to social life impervious to political manipulations of the economy, and a fund for good deeds. Her Libertarian 'Catholic Anarchism' Movement is still there and a great resource--and more important, many of her proposals are becoming increasing accepted or adapted.

Thus, many people are sharing the tools building eco-community 'prepper' networks, sustainable homes with their own personal social programs, working on de-criminalization and restorative justice, working on interfaith and secular-faith co-operation, etc. During the world economic crisis, many LIO fan/Libertarianist households weathered it all and were able to help others out mirroring her self-reliance concepts.  Above all, she understood as an Aristotle fan that for an action to be moral it must be in input benign, process benevolent, and in result actually beneficent. (Compare to 'our intentions were good, but it failed when we tried to force people.') She was grounded in the benign voluntary approach, started always with an assumption of good will and careful study, and urged people to focus on results that then arose from often easy but powerful changes. Dialogue: Is there something here that your home, extended family, or community network can use?

Day understood that capitalism/communism, selfishness/altruism, reason/caring, theory/action are false choices transcended with a holistic and rights/voluntary approach. She perceptively analyzed many evils of her time, worked in the trenches and lived the value of simple labor, and kept a high-minded and no-nonsense attitude that inspired many. There is no reason to wait for official sainthood to draw emotional, practical, and other inspiration from this Libertarian voluntarist hero of heroes.

Tools: Some useful if not always accurate links to get familiar/start dialogue. Enjoy!

Categories: ALL, EMPOWER Lib Community, Democratize