I've had such fun of late creating flash fiction tales inspired by pics, that I thought I'd do it again. Here's the one I chose this time around. What do you think of it?
This image, entitled Steam Punk Assassin, from Giby-Joseph is also posted on Pinterest. Notwithstanding its title, it summons a wide range of possible storylines.
I try my best to keep my flash fiction stories within 1000 words. This time, I just hit the mark, after honing the story down, down, down. (It is more difficult than you might think!)
Please take a minute, enjoy, then share your thoughts.
A Minor Magician
My next quote comes from someone likely considered less of an author and more of a philosopher, although certainly he wrote, and that is John Locke (1632-1704). Locke wrote on topics including the consent of the governed, the labor theory of property, and the concept of separating church and state. His works influenced others, including some of the founders of the U.S., namely Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and Thomas Jefferson. Perhaps my favorite John Locke quote is:
War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things: the decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth a war, is much worse ... A man who has nothing which he is willing to fight for, nothing which he cares more about than he does about his personal safety, is a miserable creature who has no chance of being free, unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself . . .
I’ve one more quote here (sometimes attributed to John Locke, other times to other sources), before I move on because it is another I’ve repeated many, many times over the years. It is: “Your liberty to swing your fist ends just where my nose begins.” Or as I like to say it: “Your rights stop where my nose starts.” The idea here is that “rights” are something a person possesses innately, by reason of existence, through no doing of that person’s own, and having required nothing from anyone else. Thus, “rights” include, for example, the right to speak your mind, to practice your religion of choice, and to defend yourself. When you exercise those things, you take nothing from anyone else. It costs your neighbor nothing to allow you to speak; it costs your community nothing for you to worship in your chosen way; it costs your fellow citizens nothing to allow you to defend your life. By contrast, something is not a right and cannot be a “right,” if it requires anything from anyone else. To demand that another provide something to you would be, essentially, for you to make a slave of your neighbor. And so, “your right stops where my nose starts” means that you do not have the “right” to demand anything from me, including my labor or the fruits of it, for your benefit, nor may I demand the like from you. That doesn't mean that we should not help one another. Rather, it means that we cannot force others using the power of the state (which really means, at the threat of the loss of liberty or life), to give from the fruits of our labor to others ... So in the end it seems that this simple quote evokes deep meaning ...
Those who deny freedom to others, deserve it not for themselves; and under a just God, cannot long retain it.
The philosophy of the school room in one generation will be the philosophy of government in the next.
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