Freedom is an acquired taste

I am convinced that freedom is an acquired taste, somewhat like dietary preferences. People brought up in a vegetarian households are likely to prefer vegetarian food. People brought up free tend to prefer freedom and those brought up under command structures, prefer that. Muslims apparently prefer the stifling, humanity-denying strictures of Islam that non-Muslims generally find horrifying.

Indians are apparently quite comfortable being bullied, bossed, commanded, spoken down to, controlled, etc, and in turn they bully, boss, command, speak rudely, control, etc others. This loosely explains why Indians got ruled by Islamic invaders, why the Europeans could colonize India, and why “higher” caste Indians oppress the “lower” caste Indians. Once you claim superiority compared to some, you have to admit that you are inferior compared to some others. Those who value freedom for themselves can never deny freedom to others.

Good news is that the love of freedom can be inculcated in people. People who love freedom also want others to be free and therefore they are not interested in being in the commanding business. Nehru is a typical example of a person who disliked the idea of freedom. He wanted to be the master. And that made his slavery to the British acceptable to him. A quote from Abraham Lincoln is apt here: “As I would not be a slave, so I would not be a master.”

(Dumping on Nehru is de rigueur at this site. It is strictly required and is not the least gratuitous. Today I will visit Porbandar, the birthplace of another freedom-hating man, M K Gandhi. Bullying and commanding was his stock in trade too.)

Author: Atanu Dey


2 thoughts on “Freedom is an acquired taste”

  1. Dr Dey
    While freedom is an acquired taste, Lincoln quotes appear “inherited” for the majority of folk.
    I am not an evangelist and do not hope to change your views on Lincoln, but hope that you will consider reading two books written on the man by Thomas Dilorenzo (Austrian school economist and unabashed Mises fan). If you do not have time for the books at least read this

    For even shorter versions of the above arguments, here is Dr. Walter Williams

    Lincoln was first and last a “tariff and corporate welfare” man. It was the refusal of the Confederate states to collect tariff and not moral concerns about slavery, which occasioned the Civil War. I see amazing parallels between Lincoln and Gandhi. Both men failed politically, but their assassination sanctified their failures and transmuted them into saints.


    1. Arvind,

      Thanks for the comment. As it happens, I am familiar with the works of all the people you mention. I have read Dilorenzo’s and Williams’ books and watched many Youtube videos of their talks. I am familiar with Lincoln’s life and work. Specifically, I am aware that Lincoln did fairly horrible stuff during the “Civil” war. (Actually it wasn’t a civil war. The states were forced to stay in the union.)

      In any case, my quoting Lincoln does not imply that I approve of everything that he did. I would not go so far as to equate Gandhi and Lincoln. Gandhi was far worse. Gandhi was a tool of the British.


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