A Message For the Modern Left (Opinion)
“If we don’t believe in freedom of expression for people we despise, we don’t believe in it at all.” Noam Chomsky
Your party needs a resurgence.
The word Liberal was once a sober term for a system of democratic government and a name that advocated First Amendment freedoms. This is not the case today. Being a college liberal was once a position of pride. The two words put together have become so toxic that conservatives and libertarian millennials are silenced, they are afraid to speak out because they more than likely will have to endure name-calling, false monoliths, identity politics, and the feelings that accompany factual arguments.
Polling conducted from USA Today and even the Huffington Post, rate the favorability of the Democratic Party at or around 36 percent, numbers far lower than the GOP, the media, and even the big bad bully Donald Trump. The current course of action, the resistance movement, the obstructionism, and the identity politics have hampered the Democrats from moving forward. But the problem is much deeper than this. When free thinkers get mocked, common sense principles are abandoned, religious liberties are persecuted, and civilians are attacked. That’s where the regression begins.
What the polls suggest is simple: The Democratic Party is struggling to find a common identity. The broad views of the party were evidenced in the Sanders and Clinton campaigns. The voter ideologies are too far apart. So, what are the next steps that progressives need to take? Understand that Chuck Schumer, a literal modern day obstructionist and majority leader Nancy Pelosi are part of the problem. The Dems need a resurgence in leadership that they have been missing for far too long and fast, or Donald Trump will undoubtedly be re-elected in 2020.
We have become so caught up in our filtered bubbles, that the case is now that someone’s views on gun control are indicative of what their views are on climate change. This should never be the case. Socializing medicine, a hard line for more refugees, and open borders are among the stances that most Americans do not identify with, but somehow there is an element of liberalism that campaigns for these platforms mainly to underpin the opinion leaders on the left that are pushing for it.
When did a sense of nationalism or a strong military become the new fascism? And for goodness sake how can college students hold up a ‘Love Trumps Hate’ sign as they protest a University of Berkeley lecture by rioting, punching civilians, and burning down their own campus? Or protest the Inauguration by destroying businesses that hard-working Americans have created? Or shun speakers that hold different points of view? What effect does that have? And if the ideology of anarchism doesn’t represent liberal democracy, then I would like to hear a Democratic leader in Congress disavow these poisonous mobs of thugs. And what the hell is with the safe spaces? And let’s not forget the identity politics, that if you don’t support globalism, you’re a fascist, if you voted for Trump, you’re a racist, and if you want tighter immigration reform you’re xenophobic. It’s intellectually absurd and appalling on the basis of rational argument.
The Regressive Left and Islam
An important reason the Democrats were defeated in the 2016 election was because of Islamic apologists. Roughly 3-4 million Muslims are in the United States. An overwhelming majority of them are progressives. Don’t believe me, look at the statistics of Republicans that are Cubans, a direct escapism from the authoritarian communist regime of Fidel Castro. Similarly, there is an escapism from traditional Islamic beliefs. But have Liberals ever considered that? Have they stopped to think why Muslim Americans tend to vote for their party? The answer is no. And because we agree with the views of Muslims Americans, we are now inclined to view the Qur’an as a beacon of Peace and can side with Islam as a religion and stoke for a 550% increase in the admittance of refugees.
One thing that should be made clear is that Islam contradicts a heavy range of liberal values (Equality for women, Rights for homosexuals, and separation of Church and State). Former Prime Minister of England, David Cameron, remarked after the Orlando Shooting at the Pulse Nightclub that, “We believe in respecting different faiths, but also expecting these faiths to support the British way of life,” Cameron said. “Too often we have lacked the confidence to enforce our values for fear of causing offense. These reforming voices have a tough enough time as it is. We can’t stand neutral in this battle of ideas, we have to back those that share our values.”
I agree with that notion. It’s almost sickening that every criticism towards the doctrine of Islam is conflated with bigotry against Muslims as people. A satirical drawing of the prophet by a Danish cartoonist is favored for prosecution by 80 percent of British Muslims. Also, when 90 percent of Egyptians believe death is the appropriate response for leaving the Islamic faith and 72 percent of Muslims in Indonesia, the most moderate Islamic country on the planet, favors Sharia law you would think this were a bigger deal.
Islamophobia does not in any particular way coincide with bigotry or hatred. If the law of the land, which is supported by a majority in the Muslim faith, advocate throwing homosexuals off of buildings, restrict women from driving and permits wives to be beaten because they were disobedient to their husbands, you would think that the third-wave Feminists would spend half as much time criticizing Islam as they do Christianity. Islam needs a major reformation and lying about the behavior of conservative Muslims, not associating Jihadists with Islam, and not denouncing the ideas of mainstream Islam does not make any progress for winning the war of ideas. Liberals, let’s get this one right.
Freedom of Speech
I was friend searching my Facebook the other day when I read a fellow college student’s bio read, “Love and Tolerance only. No conservatives allowed.” The hypocrisy of that statement is so illuminating, it reminded me of the “Love Trumps Hate” sign I mentioned. College students that believe in far left liberal principles are using their feelings to reject facts, data, and statistics and have become intolerant towards people with opposing ideas, in large cases conservative and libertarian views. This is because it is in retrospect a threat towards progressivism and is something that is viewed by Liberals, as a voice that might oppose the progress of same-sex marriage, for example.
This is not to say that there are not conservative extremists who are also misguided in principle. Liberalism is failing because it has alienated itself into a multitude of ideologies, some of which are harmful to basic human intellect. Our natural response towards individuals that commit heinous acts or abuse drugs is to become desensitized to their character. Splitting up ideologies into the emergence of the alt-left and the alt-right or conservative libertarian and democratic socialist came about because of frustration towards the ideal norms of government.
If we paint a picture of people as a racist, hateful group or these off-the-rail communist-loving hippies then what we’re doing is writing off human beings and reducing them to a standard that discriminates character and invalidates those people’s opinion. This is not to say that conservatism has not reached a divide, but the fact that they control not only the presidency, but also the house and the senate shows that the other side is struggling to regain power and convince Americans that they are ready to put forth the right policies for the nation to move forward.
Sic semper tyrannis
Featured Image via, “Flickr.”