Trying to Understand the Lynching of Stallman: for an Uncompromising Defense of Free/Libre Software

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Some people taking part in the mob lynching RMS for sure hate his guts. Because he is “weird” and they think he is “creepy”, because he doesn't obey to any of the social conventions of our times, because he isn’t considerate towards them, etc. anti-conformists, anarchists and neuro-divergent people often face this kind of hate. Some take part because they want to get the social credit of being on the side of “justice”.

written by anonymous. this text is public domain. last edited 2021-04-22.

Maybe they fear that such lynching could happen to them as well, so they hope they are buying their place in “paradise” by encouraging and fueling the mob. (Historical examples may actually prove otherwise…)But most importantly, what many of the lynchers hate is Richard’s uncompromising way of defending Free/Libre software, therefore his way of pointing out their own contradictions.

What Richard shows by his lifestyle and speaks loudly about -without filters- is the compromises that they are making by using, nurturing and promoting technology that is actually harmful to basic human rights and basic dignity.

They hate to be shown by his way of life that one can actually live without using any of these harmful technologies, that they are not “inevitable”. They feel threatened by his way of questioning as harmful the compromises that most are making every day in the name of convenience, comfort and so-called “user-friendliness”.

Many such participants in the lynch-mob who are users of Windows, macOS, Google, Amazon, Zoom, Twitter, Reddit, GitHub, etc., hate RMS because they want to pretend they can do good, that they can effectively promote and defend “digital rights”, “social justice” or whatever other shallow principles, while making such everyday unethical compromises with technologies of oppression.

RMS’ principled stances cause an uncomfortable cognitive dissonance for them. They would rather kill a sacrificial Gnu than admit their own shortcomings. It is significant that the letter demanding his resignation must be signed using Microsoft’s Github platform, and that many organizations taking position are openly accepting money from Google and other predatory companies.

Some in the mob have a strategic interest in RMS and the FSF being lynched. Because they want the hyper-capitalism-compatible, surveillance-tolerant model of “open source” to prevail over the ethical, philosophical and political concept of “free/libre software”.

Like Google, they prefer MIT license over the AGPL (that prevents business based on hiding from the users what is being done with their data). They see this model as “more free” as it gives freedom to capture and control. Ironically they don’t seem to mind about MIT actually enabling, covering for and defending Jeffrey Epstein[1], while being fully in bed with the US Military and getting billions of dollars from them [2]. They do not demand the resignation of the board of MIT or the US Army or Google… They claim we “need leaders”, and volunteer for the job. They instrumentalize the herd.

This is why it is essential today more than ever to (re)focus on the core of what free/libre software is about, and how fundamental it is for any fight towards more justice and more freedom, and to combat technological oppression. Some call it “radical”, we should reclaim it as “uncompromising”, as an ethical promise against harmful, predatory technology, and as a difficult path of life implying hard choices and everyday efforts. Following such a path frequently takes us outside of the herd, and we don’t need no “leader” nor conformism for that; just shared inspiration and a strong uncompromising will of Freedom and Justice.

(2 votes)


Anonymous (428d19ec)

8 months ago
Score 0

You seem to have this idea that everyone wants RMS gone because they don't like his opinions or whatever, when you know as well as I that this is not the case. The reason they want him gone is because he is simply a bad person. From believing child pornography should be legal to possess (https://web....or_cartoon)) to blatant transphobia. He is hostile to his peers, and has not been leading the FSF in a good direction for that past 15 years.

Your post is written like a mass shooters manifesto, by the way!


8 months ago
Score 0++

RMS had this to say about child pornography in September 2019:

"Many years ago I posted that I could not see anything wrong about sex between an adult and a child, if the child accepted it.

Through personal conversations in recent years, I've learned to understand how sex with a child can harm per psychologically. This changed my mind about the matter: I think adults should not do that. I am grateful for the conversations that enabled me to understand why."

I'm not sure why you claim he still believes child pornography is acceptable to possess. Are you.. slow?

As for the supposed transphobia, is that why actual trans people who hate met him defend him and say he is, in fact, not transphobic? See Libreboot Maintainer Leah Rowe: "Defend Richard Stallman!" for an example.

So what you're essentially saying is that you believe in slander that's simply not true and that's why you want RMS "gone".
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