[Socrates] And now, I said, let me show in a figure what separates a boy from a man: –Check this shit out! Human men living in a underground cave, which has a mouth open towards a modest suburban home; here they have been from their boyhood, and have their legs and necks chained so that they cannot move, but with one hand free to masturbate, and can only see before them, being prevented by the chains from turning round their heads, but not their shafts. Above and behind them there is an electrical outlet, and between the outlet and the prisoners there is a raised way; and you will see, if you look, a low wall built along the way, like the screen which film projectors have in front of them, over which they show action movies and 3D cartoons.
[Glaucon] I see.
[Socrates] And do you see, I said, men sitting along the wall with computers, panels, and dials, controlling images on the screen of all sorts of women; actresses, supermodels, and porn stars made of wood and silicon and various materials, which appear over the wall? Some of them are moaning, others silent, as women should be.
[Glaucon] You have shown me a strange image, and they are strange prisoners.
[Socrates] Like ourselves, I replied; and they see only their own shadows, or the shadows of their brothers, which the light of the screen throws on the opposite wall of the cave?
[Glaucon] Fo’ shizzy, he said; how could they see anything but the shadows if they were never allowed to move their heads?
[Socrates] And of the images being shown; they would not see the computers which are their source?
[Glaucon] Yes, he said.
[Socrates] And if they were able to converse with one another, would they not suppose that they were referring to actual women?
[Glaucon] Oh damn.
[Socrates] And suppose further that the prison had a killer surround sound system with some majestic subwoofers which came from the other side, would they not be sure to fancy when these speakers produce sound that the voice which they heard came from one of these fine bitches?
[Glaucon] No doubt, he replied.
[Socrates] To them, I said, the truth would be literally nothing but the images of the women figures.
[Glaucon] This is some fluffy fine truth, ‘crates.
[Socrates] And now look again, and see what will naturally follow if the prisoners are released and meet real women. At first, when any of them is liberated and compelled suddenly to stand up and wipe the excess off his genitals and look towards a normal human woman, he will suffer sharp pains; their bodies will distress him, and he will be unable to see the realities of which in his former state he had seen the images. Now imagine someone saying to him that the bombshells he saw before were an illusion, but that now, when his eye is turned towards more real human beings, he has a clearer vision. What will be his reply? Will he not be completely bummed out? Will he not fancy that the images which he formerly saw are way hotter than the women which are now shown to him?
[Glaucon] Way, way hotter.
[Socrates] And if he is compelled to look straight at these slightly asymmetric strumpets, will he not have a pain in his eyes which will make him turn away to take and take in the objects of vision which he can see, and which he will think are a reality truer than the females which are now being shown to him?
[Glaucon] I’d bet my ass.
[Socrates] And suppose once more, that he is reluctantly dragged up a steep and rugged ascent, and held fast until he’s forced into the presence of the ghost of Susan B. Anthony, is he not likely to be pained and irritated? When he approaches the educated woman his eyes will be dazzled, and he will not be able to see anything at all of what are now called realities.
[Glaucon] Not all in a moment, he said.
[Socrates] He will require growing accustomed to the sight of feminists. And first he will see the images of women best, next the body parts of these images, and then the women themselves; then he will gaze upon the light of the moon and the stars and the spangled heaven; and he will see the sky and the stars by night better than the sun or the light of the sun by day?
[Glaucon] Damn straight.
[Socrates] Last of he will be able listen to the feminist, and not just stare at her tits. He will see her in her own proper place, and not in another; and he will contemplate her as she is.
[Socrates] He will then proceed to argue that this is how he identifies politically, and is the guardian of all women in the visible world, and in a certain way the only weapon which they possess against illusion?
[Glaucon] Totes magotes, he said, he would first see the feminist and then reason about him.
[Socrates] And when he remembered his old Man Cave, and the wisdom of the cave and his fellow-brothers, do you not suppose that he would pity them?
[Glaucon] Oh those poor bastards, he would.
[Socrates] And if they, his brothers, were in the habit of conferring honors among themselves on those who were quickest to observe the passing supermodels and porn stars and to remark which of them had the tightest ass, and which could suck the fattest cock, and which were together in copulation; and who were therefore best able to make the men spunk on the cave wall, do you think that he would care for such pleasures, or envy the possessors of them? Would he not say with Home-Dog, “Better to be the poor servant of a poor master, than a servant of poor masturbation”, and not desire to live after their manner?
[Glaucon] Yes, I think that unless he was a sloth or a coward he would rather suffer anything than let his brothers live in this miserable manner.
[Socrates] Imagine once more, I said, such a one coming suddenly out of the sun to be replaced in his old situation; would he not be certain to have his eyes full of darkness?
[Glaucon] Most definitely, he said.
[Socrates] And if there were a contest, and he had to compete in measuring the tits of the images with the prisoners who had never moved out of the cave, while his sight was still weak, and before his eyes had become steady, would he not be ridiculous? Men would say of him that up he went and down he came and misplaced his testicles along the way; and that it was better not even to think of ascending; and if any one tried to let another loose and lead him up to the light of social progress, let them only catch the fairy boy, and they would call him a such a fucking faggot.
[Glaucon] Children can be cruel, he said.
[Socrates] This entire allegory, I said, you may now append, dear Glaucon, to the previous argument; the Man Cave is our society, the light of the images is the media, and you will not misapprehend me if you interpret the journey upwards to be the ascent of men into true feminism. My opinion is that in the world of knowledge the idea of good appears last of all, and is seen only with an effort; and, when seen, is also inferred to be the universal author of all things beautiful and right, parent of light and of the lord of light in this visible world, and the immediate source of reason and truth in the intellectual; and that this is the power upon which he who would act rationally, either in public or private life must have his eye fixed.
[Glaucon] I agree, he said, as far as I am able to understand these mad rhymes you’re busting.
[Socrates] Moreover, I said, you must not wonder that those who attain to this vision are unwilling to descend to the lowly affairs of bro-dom; for their souls are ever hastening into the upper world of equality where they desire to dwell; which desire of theirs is very natural, if our allegory may be trusted.
[Glaucon] Totally, very natural.
[Socrates] And is there anything surprising in one who passes from divine contemplations to the evil state of man, misbehaving himself in a ridiculous manner; if, while his eyes are blinking and before he has become accustomed to the surrounding oppression, he is compelled to fight in courts of law, or in other places, and is endeavoring to strive for the rights of those women who have never yet seen justice?
[Glaucon] Anything but surprising, he replied.
[Socrates] Then, I said, the business of us who are the founders of the State will be to compel the best minds to attain that knowledge which we have already shown to be the greatest of all-they must continue to ascend until they arrive at the good; but when they have ascended and seen enough we must not allow them to do as they do now.
[Glaucon] I’m not sure I’m picking up what you’re putting down.
[Socrates] I mean that they remain in the upper world: but this must not be allowed; they must be made to descend again among the prisoners in the cave, and tell them that sexual assault and harassment, and all objectification, are things of the Stone Age, and of ape-like men.
[Glaucon] Dang, he said.
[Socrates] Observe, Glaucon, that there will be no injustice in compelling our fellows to have a care and providence of others; we shall explain to them that in other Nations, men of their class are not obliged to respect any part of a woman: for they grow up at their own will, and they would rather not see differently. Being taught of their superiority, they cannot be expected to show any gratitude for a culture which they are no longer superior. But we have brought you into the world to be the equals of women, and have educated you far better and more perfectly than they aforementioned have been educated. Wherefore each of you, when his turn comes, must go down to the general underground abode, and get the habit of seeing in the darkness of oppression. When you have acquired the habit, you will see ten thousand times better than the inhabitants of the cave, and you will know what the several images are, and what they represent, is evil, because you have seen the beauty in the natural and unaffected woman and good in their truth. And thus our Nation which is also yours will be a reality and not a dream only, and will be administered in a spirit unlike that of other Nations, in which men fight with one another about who could fuck the images harder and are distracted in the struggle for power, which in their eyes is a great good.
[Glaucon] ‘Boys will be boys’, right?.
[Socrates] And will our pupils, when they hear this, refuse to take their turn at the toils of politics, when they are allowed to spend the greater part of their time with their peers in the light of peace?
[Glaucon] Impossible, he answered; for they are just men, and the duties which we impose upon them are just; there can be no doubt that every one of them will take up the cause of equality as a stern necessity, and not after the fashion of our present rulers of Nation, who are too old and too white.
[Socrates] Yes, my friend, I said; and there lies the point. Some people straight up don’t give a shit. You must contrive for your future rulers the fact some of them are going to be women and orchestrate a better life than that those women before them, and then you may have a well-ordered Nation; for only in the Nation which offers this, will they rule who are truly rich, not in silver and gold, but in virtue and wisdom, freedom and equality, which are the true blessings of life. Whereas if they go to the administration of public affairs, poor and hungering after their own libido, thinking that hence they are to snatch the chief pussy by pretending to respect women, order there can never be; for they will be fighting about office, and the sexual and domestic broils which thus arise will be the ruin of the rulers themselves and of the whole Nation. The process, I said, is not the turning over of an oyster-shell, but the turning round of a soul passing from a day which is little better than night to the true day of being, that is, the ascent from below, which we affirm to be true philosophy?
[Glaucon] Quite so. Equality is super dope.