Are you a "Liberal?" |

Are you a "Liberal?"

James Say, Breckenridge

In the new age of pseudo news from conservative media organizations such as Fox News, coupled with relentless attacks on progressive views from the darker corners of AM radio, the term “liberal” apparently has lost all relevant meaning. Since this universally abhorrent label describes only one-dimensional cartoon realities rather than real progressives, it has been an effective rhetorical brush to paint over all those interested in rational change with the dreaded “L” word. However, now the bullets are flying and mainstream America is rapidly becoming more jittery about the freefalling course of the nation away from the principles that have guided us for 200-plus years. Consequently, the neocon architects of this dive to the right are making even more frenetic efforts to dismiss every criticism of Bush and company as just more wild-eyed efforts by those “liberals” to sell out the country. If you are among this group, please consider the following as an introductory guide to contemporary liberal thought.You are a liberal:If you believe that the government should not advocate a particular religion’s point of view in making policy.If you believe that the government should not criminalize the personal day-to-day affairs of individuals.If you believe all civilized governments have certain moral obligations to its citizens such as providing for a common defense, police and fire protection, a fair and functioning legal system, a health-care system, a fair economic system, an equal access education system free of religious and political bias, and the citizens in return have a moral responsibility to directly share in the cost and support of these institutions.If you believe that individual responsibility must be matched equally with corporate and governmental responsibility. If you believe the priceless heritage of the people’s ownership of the land in the form of national parks, wilderness areas and forests should be preserved, uncontaminated for our decedents rather than carved up and exploited for short term financial gain. If you believe the unquestioned position of American dominance is best maintained by our example of success with democracy at home rather than by our arbitrary use of force abroad. If you believe that the best way to defend America is to unify our people and strengthen our institutions at home and further, that the act of war should be an option only when faced with a direct, imminent and unmistakable threat of attack from a foreign nation. If you believe that America can maintain its position as world leader only when we look out at the community of nations with respect for their culture and values. If you believe that conservation policies rather than promotion of unlimited consumptive greed best favors our security over time.

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