Thursday, December 16th, 2020
"Why do you work so hard on this stuff?"
That was the question I was asked recently by Shammah Chancellor, founder of Stamp Chat, and former Bitcoin ABC developer.
"Good question," I said.
Because the truth is I'd asked myself the same thing many times before, but I'd never been able to come up with a satisfactory answer. I knew that deep down it had something to do with a desire to change the world, to make it better, but I couldn't say exactly what that meant. It wasn't about banking the unbanked, or bringing more economic freedom to the world (though maybe that was part of it). It was about something more important, but what?
So I asked Shammah his own question back to him, "Why do you work so hard on this stuff?"
And he said:
"Because I believe that if we all work together on ourselves, we can eventually live in a place where the strong use their strength for the benefit of the weak rather than to brutalize them. And I think a correctly, carefully, constructed cryptocurrency is part of what is required to get there."
A place where the strong use their strength for the benefit of the weak.
Yes, that's exactly what I want, I thought.
And not because the strong are forced to help those weaker than they are, but because they want to. Because they want to make others stronger, and help to build a better culture, and a better immune system. To me that's what Bitcoin ABC is building, and the reason I work so hard writing these articles is because I want to spread the word.
I know that almost sounds religious, but I'm not trying to spread the word of God. I'm trying to spread an idea. The idea of what it means to be good.
Earlier I emphasized what Shammah said about using our strength for the benefit of the weak, but the first part was just as important, about "working together on ourselves".
Because we need to make ourselves stronger before we can help others to do the same. I like to imagine a world full of people who work hard at not wasting their talents. A world where that's the norm, where that's what is expected of everyone, not being lazy, or wasteful, or always full of excuses, but getting shit done and being properly rewarded for your work.
I believe in the Bitcoin project because I think at its core that's what it's really about, about teaching people how to be good again. It's about putting in the work and using your talents to build something. It's about standing up for your beliefs, and not giving up, and eventually using your strength to help the weak, not lording it over them and making them beg.
And finally, the last part of what Shammah said was, "And I think a correctly, carefully, constructed cryptocurrency is part of what is required to get there."
I agree, and I think we finally have that thanks to Bitcoin ABC.