Thursday, 21 March 2013

Anti-establishment group hosts "Ask an Anarchist Day" to educate students

Wade Craig (left) and Grayson English, university college freshmen, table in the Union about anarchy and why it would be ideal to have a "stateless society."

Anarchists gathered Wednesday in Oklahoma Memorial Union to discuss anarchism and clear misconceptions people have about the non-political system.

Students for a Stateless Society hosted a booth for "Ask an Anarchist Day," providing informational pamphlets and discussion about the tenets of anarchy, including how an antiestablishment group can exist.

The campus organization, open to students and non-students, started last fall and is made up of about 15 anarchists who meet weekly to discuss anti-state philosophy, said University College freshman Thomas Beierle, who assisted with the running of the booth.

"There are many sects and opinions on anarchism, and we wanted people to come and ask us questions to get a dialogue going," Beierle said.

Philosophy senior Jason Byas co-founded the organization with University College freshman Grayson English, Byas said.

"We try to explain to people that anarchists don't believe in violence against the public," Byas said.

When students ask the group how it can organize while trying to cultivate an anti-establishment approach to society, they make the distinction that anarchy only opposes forced organization, Byas said.

"This organization, and most forms of anarchy in general, believes in voluntary organizations in which everyone is an equal moral agent," Byas said.

Byas was attracted to anarchism personally because it offered a more peaceful and voluntary society, he said.

"My interests grew as it further offered a way of breaking down not only state aggression, but also other systems of domination, like racism and sexism," Byas said.