THESES ON VIOLENCE
By Friedrich Hacker
[These theses are translated from the German in: Aggression. Die
Brutalisierung der Modernen Welt, 1973, Rowohlt, Hamburg, pp.13-15.]
Violence is the problem that pretends to be its solution.
Problems that can only be solved with violence must re-framed.
Naked violence is the visible, unbound and free form of aggression.
All aggression is not violent but all violence is aggression.
Violence is infectious like cholera. Violence owes its virulence to the
appearance of justification that makes it epidemic.
Violence feels justified as counterforce.
Violence prohibited as an offense is commanded, renamed and
justified as a sanction.
Justification causes and escalates what it wants to deny and conceal:
its own violence.
Justified violence seduces to imitation of both justification and violence.
The legitimation of violence makes use of label fraud. One's own violence
is presented and perceived as necessity, natural law, obligation, duty,
self-defense and service of higher goals.
Denial and repression of one's own aggression projected on the enemy
increase the likelihood of the enemy's counterforce.
Violence is simple. Alternatives to violence are complex.
The antithesis to complexity is aggressive simplification, not simplicity.
The price for simplification is violence.
The unrecognized veiled mask and bond of aggression for controlling violence
becomes the cause of violence and justification of violence.
The explosion of fierce violence is to planned action of cold violence
as symptom is to strategy.
Strategy can bring about and utilize symptoms. In the strategic use of
symptomatic violence, manipulation controls spontaneous expression.
Reason is only an alternative to violence when it is not its justifier and
The forcible education to nonviolence is accustomed to the education
method, not the education intention and perpetuates the violence that
it wants to prevent.
The forcibly established need for violence is represented as a natural
Exceptions to the prohibition of violence become rules for the use of
Total renunciation on force or non-aggression only preached or imposed
on others hides one's own aggression and prepares the use of force through its
justification as counterforce.
Only owners, not the have-nots, can prevent the escalation of violence and
brutalization through the limitation of force and abstinence on force.
Violence is the secret message of the mass media. In its models of conflict
Resolution, the justified, rash and preventive use of force is encouraged.
The hero is the more successful one and often the brutal one.
To legitimate violence, its alternatives are eliminated, e.g. renunciation on
Patterns and label fraud, promotion of tolerance for complexity and strategies
of come-of-age existence.
The language of violence is not a language. The only ones who understand it
Are mental robots and emotional illiterates.
One can learn from violence without imitating it or bowing to it.