Thursday, January 27, 2005

The world is a better place because of liberals

I'm a liberal, and I'm proud of it. The modern Republican party has tried to redefine "liberal" to mean "evil". That is a form of projection: Republican policies are destroying the best gains in freedom that this country has made. Republicans are fighting for changes that benefit corporations and wealthy individuals at the expense of the rest of us. They do so from greed, selfishness, and lust for power. They would increase liberty for themselves and reduce it for everyone else. "Liberal" means striving for the good things that have accrued to all Americans in the way of freedom, liberty, and justice. The Constitution, the Bill of Rights, the Emancipation Proclamation, decisions such as Brown v. Board of Education, the Civil Rights Act, the Voting Act—these embody the ideals of liberals. The things that secure liberty to ourselves and our posterity have been achieved and defended by liberals. Without liberals... Do you want to live in a world like that? Liberals throughout American history won these victories for us, and so-called "conservatives" are now reversing them all. Who cares more about freedom and liberty? The people who won us the right to find a job, get married, take out a library book, and travel around America all without government dictating who, what, when, and where? Or the people who torture innocent prisoners? who plot to strip the safety net away and make destitute more and more of our people? who investigate and persecute law-abiding citizens for simply doubting out loud whether the government is entirely honest, for their choice of bumper stickers and posters, or even for no reason other than that they can? Start with the modern Pharisees like Pat Robertson and James Dobson. They should be sat down and made to listen to Hugh Blumenfeld. They ignore the liberal teaching of the Gospels in favor of the dictatorial nature of Paul and the prophets. "Conservatives" love the wrath and legalism of Leviticus and pay only lip service to the admonition about "whatsoever you do to the least of my brothers." They hate sin and hate sinners. Do you think the modern Republican party is going to defend freedom of religion? It's "conservatives"—including both Presidents Bush!—who are going along with the movement to have Sun Myung Moon crowned King of America and the cross torn down from churches all over the country. It's "conservatives" who are telling Jews, Muslims, Buddhists, agnostics, Presbyterians, and many others that they aren't entitled to the same protections as evangelicals. It's "conservatives" who announced that "separate but equal" was a just outcome. By claiming that "it is not the province of the court to decide upon the justice or injustice, the policy or impolicy, of these laws", such "conservatives" lie: they truly do decide, and they decide that the injustice done is exactly what they want. In their judging, they find others undeserving of fair treatment, let alone of encouragement or improvement. In contrast, John F. Kennedy said that "liberalism [...] is an attitude of mind and heart, a faith in man's ability through the experiences of his reason and judgment to increase for himself and his fellow men the amount of justice and freedom and brotherhood which all human life deserves." I'm grateful for and to liberals. I'd grateful for people like Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, Franklin Roosevelt, and Martin Luther King. They make me proud to be an American and eager to try to live up their standards.


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