Imagine that you live in a time in the far future. Not "far" like a million years, but lets say 20 or 30 thousand. Humanity has progressed to such a point at which, if our ancestors of the 21 century could see us, they would think we had the powers of gods. We run our lives, our society, and even the world with nano technology, we can sculpt our bodies into forms that are limited only by our imagination, we have extended the life-span to 6 or 8 centuries, we have teleportation and replication technologies, we have returned the earth to a natural, pre-human state, hell, lets even throw in the world being run by a benevolent AI, as far as weather and climate, we have unlimited energy sources, and in general, life is rainbows and candy. But perfection has its price: the birth rate is approaching zero.
You have the freedom to be whatever and whoever you want. Would you still be human? Or to be more clear, would you still have any humanity?
Here is the scenario: The world is loosely governed by a counsel who possess "Keys" to the power sources. They are benevolent in nature, and have been so for a thousand years. To the point in which war and its associated effects are unknown, and have been for thousands of years. In fact, the only weapons are those such as what you would find at our modern-day Renn fairs. Indestructable armor and monomolecular-edged blades, but still Middle Ages.
One half of the counsel wants to make a radical change by stripping the world of its surplus power, returning everyone to a condition in which they would have to work, with the theory being that, as needs increase, the need for labor will increase, thereby leading to a population growth. The other half sees the same problem, but wants to implement a much slower change. Pragmatically, they are both right, and the only difference is in the implementation.
A battle ensues. We are observers who are witnessing the fundamental destruction of our way of life, no matter who wins. Both sides of the counsel approach us with offers to become part of their faction, with all of the associated benefits. We have to choose and neutrality is not an option. As the battle begins to take shape, we are discussing our thoughts. I start the conversation as follows:
"Their vision is ancient, as ancient as the slavery of an ancient group called the Hebrews or the deaths of hundreds of millions at the hands of a group called "the communists". He says that it is for the good of all mankind, but then counters that, of course, a small group will continue to enjoy the conditions that everyone else has had stripped from them. Words such as this resound throughout history, and in EVERY case, they have ultimately meant enslavement and death.
We could submit to the other half. The power would come back on and some of the normal amenities of life would prevail. Until they discovered the next "path of righteousness". And all of us would be powerless slaves.
As for me, I chose not to be a slave. I chose not to enslave my friends or their families. I chose to fight against this!
On the shores of this land, once upon a time, stood a great nation called "America". It is from the seeds of this nation that our present culture derives. The beliefs of that nation were simple: We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights, among which are the rights to life, liberty, and to the pursuit of happiness.
Through their vision and their beliefs, the people of this "America"-often alone-fought the tides of history and despotism, and finally created THIS society, one in which all of those rights and more are protected. The radical members of the counsel wish to change this, and the Long Night is upon us.
But I believe that we can win through the night, and create once again the society that we hold dear. The way will be long, but we CAN make the journey. One people, one nation, striding forward. Conceived in the concept of liberty and true to the philosophies we hold dear."
Now it's your turn. Continue the conversation!