Ted Kaczynski’s Letter to the Saturday Evening Review (1970)

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C. W. Griffin, Jr., exaggerates the extent to which Americans romanticize the freedom, independence, and adventure of the frontier. In any case, such romanticization should be regarded as a symptom rather than a disease. A happily married man does not daydream about romantic love. Similarly, a man does not romanticize frontier freedoms unless he is suffering from a lack of personal autonomy. Mr. Griffin apparently would like to change people to make them fit the restrictive structure of society. Perhaps a better solution would be to change the structure of society so that it becomes possible to allow people some of the freedom and independence that they seem to crave. A society, after all, is supposed to be designed for the benefit of the people that live in it, not the other way around.

Griffin would put the blame for our environmental problems on excessive individual freedoms. Actually, most of the problems are direct or indirect results of the activities of large organizations—corporations and governments. It is these organizations, after all, that control the structure and development of society. Perhaps the most unfortunate thing that has ever happened to individual liberty was its being used as an excuse for the misdeeds of huge corporations. Now the evils perpetuated by these highly collectivist organizations are blamed on “individual liberty.”

Theodore J. Kaczynski,

Lombard, Ill.

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