Dream of: 07 April 1997 "Right Of Privacy"

I had just arrived at the house of a fellow I had known in my first years of college. At that time, I had gone to a party or two at his house, parties where marijuana and hallucinogens had been the order of the day. I had now come to visit him again, thinking he might know where I might obtain some drugs. When I arrived, I saw a fellow standing outside the front door, and before going in, I began talking with him. This fellow told me that my old friend wasn't home at the moment. But the fellow didn't stop there, and he began to fill me in on further details of my old buddy's life. The fellow revealed that my old friend had gotten heavy into dealing drugs, but that at present my old buddy was having a problem with a shipment. It seemed that my old friend had bought two tons of drugs somewhere in Southeast Asia, but he was having trouble bringing the drugs back to the United States, and the shipment was being held-up overseas. I was amazed by the whole story. Two tons seemed like a truly enormous amount of drugs, and it was difficult to believe that someone I knew was involved in dealing drugs on such a vast scale.

***

I was sitting in the back seat of a car. Several other fellows were in the car with me, and we had arrived at a house out in the country where we were still looking for my old friend, still hoping to obtain some drugs. As we eased along the forested road, and pulled up closer to the house, I began to have a bad feeling. I noticed some men standing off in the shadows amidst the trees, and it occurred to me that they might be lawmen who had staked out the house. I knew that I didn't have any drugs on me, and that there was no reason that I should be arrested, even if a problem did arise. Nevertheless I was worried. For all I knew, one of the other fellows in the back seat might have a bag of pot on him and might stick it down the back seat. Then the cops might try to say the pot belonged to me, and arrest me.

My fears soon proved to be well-founded, at least the fears that the cops were lurking about. Like blitzkrieg the cops suddenly swarmed in all around us, shouting and demanding that everyone get out of the car. We all quickly obeyed and stood in a little group outside the car. I was expecting the cops to start giving us a hard time and start frisking us, but instead, they assembled nearby in a little group and conferenced among themselves. It soon became apparent that they were far too involved in their present raid on the house, and they paid us little attention. All their energy was focused on busting the house.

Sensing that the cops weren't concerned about me, I became bolder. As the cops scurried around me, preparing for their assault on the house, I became angrier and angrier at what they were doing. Finally in an outburst I began screaming, "Nazis! Nazis!" One invective after another flew from my mouth. Here indeed was a cause close to my heart. To me there was little difference between a nark and a Nazi. Both were evil men intent on suppressing personal freedom. As I continued to scream, I tried to make it clear that it was the principle of freedom that I was talking about. At one point I screamed out, "I can do whatever I want with my own body!" I tried to point out that no one had a right to take this freedom away from me. It was my body.

I noticed that one of the cops was now watching me. It was quickly clear that he was the man in charge. He was a short slender fellow with black hair. He seemed interested in hearing what I had to say, so I aimed my tirade at him. I knew that just on the other side of the road was the country of China and I thought China would be a good example of what I was talking about. I screamed, "We might as well be across the road." By that I meant to say that just as the Chinese people weren't free, so we in the United States weren't free. It was very clear to me that if a person could be incarcerated for simply taking a drug, we could hardly be said to be living in a free society.

I had given this matter much thought. I knew that imprisoning people for possessing drugs was the strongest sort of affront to the principle of personal freedom, no less so than what the Nazis had done to the Jews, or what the communist Chinese did to their own people. I also knew that more and more people were beginning to realize the injustice of these laws. And in American jurisprudence, I knew the principle which I was trying to uphold. In my final outburst I screamed out, "That's called the right of privacy!" I also knew I wasn't the only person who realized the right of privacy was our most treasured right.

Knowing all of this didn't prepare me for what happened next. One of the fellows who had been in the car with me – a short skinny guy – suddenly walked over to the head cop, and in a blink of the eye, pulled out a knife and slashed the cop's neck open. The other cops were too late to stop it, although they quickly subdued the little fellow with the knife. Other cops quickly gathered around the head cop, picked him up, and began rushing him away.

I was flooded with emotion. I realized the little guy with the knife might have been stirred to action by what I had been saying, but that wasn't what I had been expecting. I hadn't wanted to get involved in that way. I was aghast. I had never seen such a sight. At least not in person. I didn't know quite how to feel. True, I despised the cops for being evil, and in a way I was happy to see any of them die, but at the same time, I really didn't want to see the cop have his neck cut like that. It was as if I had such strong conflicting feelings, the feelings canceled each other out, and I just felt numb.

As the injured cop was being carried away, he called out my last name. I didn't know how he knew my name, but apparently he knew who I was. He didn't seem at all angry with me, and instead in a calm voice, he called out that he knew someone with whom I could talk, someone who within a year could turn me back on the right path. I had the feeling that he was talking about some kind of mystic, perhaps Asian, who could straighten me out and help me see that my philosophy about drugs and freedom was in error.

I didn't know quite how to take this. Again I still felt numb. It was hard for me to completely despise this man: he seemed convinced that he was right, and he seemed to genuinely think that I could be swung around to his way of thinking, even though I knew that was not to be. It was inconceivable for me to think I would ever change my position. As far as what had just happened, I hadn't enjoyed seeing the man have his throat slashed open. It was terrible. But at the same time, I had to recognize that the cop had been trying to violate the right of privacy, and I couldn't deny that he had deserved what had happened to him. I was numb, but I still knew what I believed.

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