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Friday, August 20, 2010

Do Liberals have any morals?

One charge that conservatives will often level against liberals is that we don’t have morals. Many conservatives believe that anything goes for liberals. Liberals are often charged with being totally relativistic.

While I don’t agree with that charge, I can understand where it comes from. At our worse, liberals are too nice, too careful not to offend and too anxious to include everyone. The reality of life means that we make choices and people get left out. I also believe that the word “non-judgmental.” is over used. Life is about making good healthy judgments and decisions and we should not be shy about it

I also think we liberals have given up (or perhaps been robbed of) the moral high ground. Conservatives have been successfully able to paint themselves as “the real Americans.” (I have started working on a future posting about how we American have become totally polarized in our thinking, stay tuned.)

If liberals are ever going to fight this, we have to be wiling to talk about morality and not be ashamed or allow ourselves to feel “less than” the conservatives.

Here are a few places I recommend we start:

• Strongly clear laws and punishments for rape and sexual assault.-This country is a mishmash of laws and enforce on rape and no one seems to get anger about this, it is time someone did!

• Domestic violence- Still in 2010, in places all over America, domestic violence is viewed as a “family” issue and not prosecuted anywhere near as much as it should be. Liberals should be pushing for strong enforcement of laws that protect women and children especially. I am definitely of the school that because someone has given birth to or fathered a child, it doesn’t make them a parent.

• Gay rights- LGBT people should have full and complete access to marriage and adoption of children. We have to stop settling of separate but equal and the state by state bullshit. It is wrong that adult Americans anywhere in this country can’t marry the person they love…period. Gay people are good parents to children study after study has shown, and it is not a social experiment!

On the below two liberals should call conservative to the table and demand they acknowledge the problems, and then work together toward solutions.

• A frank discussion on race and class in this country- The reality is that poor and working class people, and members ethnic and racial minorities are arrested for more crimes, go to prison more often and for long sentences than white wealthier people, but we are often afraid to ask why and what can be done. I think liberals have to force conservatives to address this issue. Conservatives have been very good at stirring up fear and hate by throwing out words like “quotas” and “entitlements.” I don’t have solutions but I want conservatives to acknowledge these statistical facts. I want to hear their “solutions.” Given that statistics show that in few short years more Americans will be non-white than white, this is an especially important discussion.

• Every child in America is entitled (yes entitled!) to a good quality public education regardless of where they live, who their parents are and how much money their parents have. Inter-city Black and Hispanic kids should not have to sit in over-full classrooms with few resources because of where they live. Just like the above, I don’t have a solution, but I want conservatives to acknowledge the problem and if they have solutions propose them then HOLD them accountable to see if they work.

I think the biggest problem is that liberals have allowed conservatives to set all the questions and liberals have only responded. It is time liberals asked some of the questions and demanded conservatives respond to them.

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