The following post showed up on my Face Book thread today, and, Mr. Allen (The author) makes just good points that I thought I would repost it here.
The current political climate is so extreme it means that the Right-Wing folks demonize everyone who is not in their camp. It is more examples of the concept of “The Other” which I have written about before on this blog.
This demonization is making it impossible to function as a society, and can, in the long run, destroy us. We MUST fight against this. How do we do this? I suggest we take the comments below to heart, and remember that WE are fighting for all citizens, not just the 1% at the top of the economic scale. Do not allow opinions based on lies, or prejudice, stand without challenging them. Let your elected officials know what they are doing right, and doing wrong. Do it politely, and with courtesy. Finally, perhaps most importantly….VOTE! Make sure you vote in every election. Urge those around you to vote. If you can, help people bypass the barriers built against voting, and get them to the polls.
REPOST TO YOUR FAMILY BEFORE ELECTION DAY:
“An open letter to friends and family who are shocked to discover I’m a
liberal… I’ve always been a liberal, but that doesn’t mean what a lot
of you apparently think it does.
Let’s break it down, shall we?
Because quite frankly, I’m getting a little tired of being told what I
believe and what I stand for. Spoiler alert: Not every liberal is the
same, though the majority of liberals I know think along roughly these
1. I believe a country should take care of its weakest
members. A country cannot call itself civilized when its children,
disabled, sick, and elderly are neglected. Period.
2. I believe
healthcare is a right, not a privilege. Somehow that’s interpreted as “I
believe Obamacare is the end-all, be-all.” 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 far cheaper than it
is, and that everyone should have access to it. And no, I’m not opposed
to paying higher taxes in the name of making that happen.
believe education should be affordable and accessible to everyone. It
doesn’t necessarily have to be free (though it works in other countries
so I’m mystified as to why it can’t work in the US), but at the end of
the day, there is no excuse for students graduating college saddled with
five- or six-figure debt.
4. I don’t believe your money should be
taken from you and given to people who don’t want to work. I have
literally never encountered anyone who believes this. Ever. I just have a
massive moral 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 wages, lower housing costs, universal
healthcare, affordable education, and the wealthy actually paying their
share 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
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
bombing other countries while Americans die without healthcare.
believe companies should be required to pay their employees a decent,
livable wage. 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 full-time
jobs just to keep their head above water. Restaurant servers should not
have to rely on tips, multibillion-dollar companies should not have
employees on food stamps, 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.
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 don’t believe the government should regulate everything, but
since greed is such a driving force in our country, we NEED regulations
to prevent cut corners, environmental destruction, tainted food/water,
unsafe materials in consumable goods or medical equipment, etc. It’s not
that I want the government’s hands in everything — I just don’t trust
people trying to make money to ensure that their products/practices/etc.
are actually SAFE. 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 our current administration is
fascist. Not because I dislike them or because I can’t get over an
election, but because I’ve spent too 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.
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
13. I am not interested in coming after your blessed
guns, nor is anyone serving in government. What I am interested in is
sensible policies, including background checks, that just MIGHT save one
person’s, perhaps a toddler’s, life by the hand of someone who should
not have a gun. (Got another opinion? Put it on your page, not mine).
14. 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?
15. 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. Sorry, billionaires.
Maybe try investing in something else.
16. 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?
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.
So, I’m a liberal.” – Written by Larry Allen