Wish I’d have written this.
“Some consider me a liberal, but that doesn't mean what a lot of you apparently think it does.
Let's break it down, shall we? Not every liberal is the same, though the majority of liberals I know think along roughly these same lines:
1. I believe the richest country in the world should take care of its weakest members. Our country cannot call itself civilized when its children, disabled, sick, and old folks are neglected.
2. I believe healthcare is a right, not a privilege, in one of the wealthiest countries in the world. Somehow that's interpreted as "I believe Obamacare is the answer" This is not the case. I'm fully aware that the ACA has problems, that a national healthcare system would require everyone to chip in, and that it's impossible to create one that is devoid of flaws, but I have yet to hear an argument against it that makes "let people die because they can't afford healthcare" a better alternative. I believe healthcare should be a lot cheaper than it is, and that everyone should have access to it, and one should not go broke paying for it. I'm not opposed to paying higher taxes in the name of making that happen.
3. I believe a quality education should be affordable and accessible to everyone. It doesn't necessarily have to be free but at the end of the day, there is no excuse for students graduating college saddled with five- or six-figure debt, that takes a lifetime to pay off.
4. I don't believe your money should be taken from you and given to people who don't want to work. No one believes this. I have a problem with a society where a handful of people can possess the majority of the wealth while there are people literally starving to death, freezing to death, or dying because they can't afford to go to the doctor. Fair minimum wages ($15 hour), lower housing costs, universal healthcare, affordable education, and the wealthy actually paying their share, along with corporations, would go a long way toward alleviating this. Somehow believing that makes me a communist.
5. I don't throw around "I'm willing to pay higher taxes" lightly. If I'm suggesting something that involves me paying more, well, it's because I'm fine with paying my share as long as it's actually going to something besides lining corporate pockets or wars bombing other countries while Americans die without healthcare.
6. I believe companies should be required to pay their employees a decent, livable wage. (Look at Costco, starts off folks at, $15 an hour) Somehow this is always interpreted as me wanting burger flippers to be able to afford a penthouse apartment and a Mercedes. What it actually means is that no one should have to work three jobs just to keep their head above water.$15 an hour is not too much. Restaurant servers should not have to rely on tips, multibillion-dollar companies should not have employees on food stamps, (Wal-Mart) workers shouldn't have to work themselves into the ground just to barely make ends meet, and minimum wage should be enough for someone to work 40 hours and live.
7. I am not anti-Christian. I have no desire to stop Christians from being Christians, to close churches, to ban the Bible, to forbid prayer in school, etc. (BTW, prayer in school is NOT illegal; *compulsory* prayer in school is - and should be - illegal). All I ask is that Christians recognize *my* right to live according to *my* beliefs. When I get pissed off that a politician is trying to legislate Scripture into law, I'm not "offended by Christianity" -- I'm offended that you're trying to force me to live by your religion's rules. You know how you get really upset at the thought of Muslims imposing Sharia law on you? That's how I feel about Christians trying to impose biblical law on me. Be a Christian. Do your thing. Just don't force it on me or mine. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you!
8. I don't believe LGBT people should have more rights than you. I just believe they should have the *same* rights as you.
9. I don't believe illegal immigrants should come to America and have the world at their feet, especially since THIS ISN'T WHAT THEY DO (spoiler: undocumented immigrants are ineligible for all those programs they're supposed to be abusing, and if they're "stealing" your job it's because your employer is hiring illegally). I'm not opposed to deporting people who are here illegally, but I believe there are far more humane ways to handle undocumented immigration than our current practices (i.e., detaining children, splitting up families, ending DACA, etc).
10. I do not believe the govt.ought to regulate everything, however, since greed is such an obsession in our country, Id like rules to stop environmental destruction, tainted food/water, unsafe materials in consumable merchandise, etc. It is not that I would like the government's hands in everything -- I simply do not trust folks attempting to create cash by cutting corners and make sure that their products/practices/etc. are literally SAFE. I don't believe the government should regulate everything.
Is the government devoid of shadiness? Of course not. But with those regulations in place, consumers have recourse if they're harmed and companies are liable for medical bills, environmental cleanup, etc. Just kind of seems like common sense when the alternative to government regulation is letting companies bring their bottom line into the equation.
11. I believe this new Trump administration is fascist. Not because I dislike them or because I can’t get over an election, but because I've spent many years reading and learning about the Third Reich to miss the similarities. Not because any administration I dislike must be Nazis, but because things are actually mirroring authoritarian and fascist regimes of the past.
12. I believe the systemic racism and misogyny in our society is much worse than many people think, and desperately needs to be addressed. Which means those with privilege -- white, straight, male, economic, etc. -- need to start listening, even if you don't like what you're hearing, so we can start dismantling everything that's causing people to be marginalized.
13. I believe in so-called political correctness. I prefer to think it’s social politeness. If I call you Chuck and you say you prefer to be called Charles I’ll call you Charles. It’s the polite thing to do. Not because everyone is a delicate snowflake, but because as Maya Angelou put it when we know better, we do better. When someone tells you that a term or phrase is more accurate/less hurtful than the one you're using, you now know better. So why not do better? How does it hurt you to NOT hurt another person?
14. I believe in funding sustainable energy, including offering education to people currently working in coal or oil so they can change jobs. There are too many sustainable options available for us to continue with coal and oil.
15. I believe that women should not be treated as a separate class of human. They should be paid the same as men who do the same work, should have the same rights as men and should be free from abuse. Why on earth shouldn’t they be? I think that about covers it. Bottom line is that I'm a liberal because I think we should take care of each other. That doesn't mean you should work 80 hours a week so your lazy neighbor can get all your money. It just means I don't believe there is any scenario in which preventable suffering is an acceptable outcome as long as money is saved.” - Mark Heany
And my response:
I believe all these things, but I also believe in dismantling capitalism and replacing it with something that isn't based in greed, something that works, something that doesn't involve people stealing from one another to thrive; something like communism, but of course the problem with communism is that it can't work if it's forced upon people, it has to develop organically. So yes, I am a communist. With conditions.
I also believe governments are more trouble than they're worth. People can find a way of self-organizing that doesn't involve the use of force, coercion, and lies by people who shouldn't be trusted to run a day care, let alone a country. So yes, I am an anarchist.
I believe everything possible should be done to curb violence. This includes confiscating guns, destroying them, getting rid of them entirely. I am a pacifist, but not afraid to defend myself and others as need be. Doing so would be much easier if we stopped making or using guns.
Then again, I don't consider myself a liberal. I am a leftist. I make liberals look conservative by comparison.
I was a liberal once. But the older I get, the poorer I get, the more fascist this country gets, and the more shit I see, the more I lean to the left. This country, the entire system, is deeply flawed, and I don't think putting more bandaids on it is going to make anything better. I believe the only answer left is to dismantle the system and put something new and better in its place.
This was cross-posted from https://fayanora.dreamwidth.org/1464257.html
You can comment either here or there.