The Problem with the
Republican Party and the Religious Right
September 28th 2005
Problem with the
I haven’t been a
liberal my whole life, but I’ve always had liberal tendencies. When
I was old enough to vote for the first time, I voted for Reagan, and
then voted again for Bush the First, but during that time I not only
became disenchanted with the Republicans but started to see them in
an entirely new light. As someone who isn’t religious and doesn’t
believe in censorship, the Moral Majority movement and the
increasing influence of the Religious Right within the Republican
Party concerned me greatly. The final straw, however, was when I
realized that the main reason that I was a Republican had to do with
taxes, and I didn’t make enough income that anything they did would
really have a positive effect on my personal finances.
As it turned out, I
am liberal and I am not ashamed of it in the least. The Republican
blowhards have done a great job demonizing liberals which has helped
them greatly. Indeed, if many of their Republican supporters
realized how ineffective they were and how their policies were
detrimental to them, I wouldn’t be surprised to see a lot of them
leave the party. They wouldn’t become Democrats, because as bad as
the Republicans are, at least they have their s**t together. In
fact, the only reason I’ve registered Democratic is because they
don’t have an Anti-Republican party… yet.
Liberal is the way
the world is; conservative is the way people would like the world to
be. As time moves forward, so does progress and change. Plants and
animals adapt to the changes of the world around them, and as much
as man would like to freeze the world around him so that it doesn’t
move forward, it just isn’t possible. I may be a rarity, but I
don’t look to the past with a pie-eyed selective memory that most
do, nor do I have remorse for the passing of time. No matter what
we do, we cannot turn back the hands of time, we cannot stop
progress, we cannot suppress out inevitable death.
We also cannot go
back to a simpler time no matter how rose colored our hindsight is.
Besides, a lot of what made the past simpler was naivety. I’m sorry
to tell you, but except for things that are rooted in technology, we
had the same problems back then as we do now, but without the 24/7
coverage of the sensationalist news media. Kidnappings,
molestations, rapes, murders, none of these are new just because
they’re news. In fact, with technological improvements and better
reporting today, I wouldn’t be surprised if there has been a decline
in such abhorrent behavior.
I also have a
strong belief in personal liberties and privacy which is at odds
with the current Republican Party. Government has no business
legislating morality, period. Drugs, prostitution, and bedroom
behavior - the government should have no interest in any of these.
As long as you aren’t hurting someone else or putting someone else
in danger, government should keep out of it.
Many would say that
this makes me a Libertarian, but I differ from the Libertarians on
many key issues, as well. Like a Libertarian, I believe that the
government should be there to provide protection for me from
hostiles, whether they are in another country or the next county
over. For me, though, providing protections also means protecting
the environment and not allowing companies to pollute the air, land,
and water as they please.
Health care, public
education and programs for the poor also collectively improve
society. “Trickle down” economics is a crock of crap sold by those
who trickle down upon you. If you really want to increase tax
revenue without raising taxes, you provide the poor with a means to
increase their earnings rather then providing the well-off with more
money to hide in tax shelters and savings. An educated, healthy
person is more beneficial to society and stands a better chance of
improving the well-being of his life and his offspring’s. Don’t go
and change the healthcare system to be exactly like Canada’s if that
gives you the heebee jeebees, but make some changes to it. Change
it to a single payer system like Medicare.
I also am for
public education. An educated society is collectively better than a
society in which education is only available to those that can
afford it or to those that have it provided for in the form of
charity. Public education support shouldn’t stop when you graduate
from high school; it should be provided through the end of college,
as well (I’m talking about state schools, colleges like USC,
Harvard, etc should remain private). The more educated people are,
the more likely they are to be a productive member of society in
which they will likely pay back their education in their higher
payroll taxes, thus providing higher revenue for the government.
They will also be more competitive in this ever shrinking world than
those without an education.
I’m not advocating
handouts for anyone that wants one; I do expect a certain level of
personal responsibility, but I do believe that government can do
more to improve society than private organizations can accomplish.
A lot of times this looks better in theory than in practice, but
that shouldn’t stop us from trying. Sure, the current
administration is proving this to be wrong, but isn’t that what they
set out to do in the first place?
Comment on the Article
your own Article
Mr. Conrad is a writer based in Southern California
Keywords and misspellings: republicon