What Is It That You Think You Know?
What is it that you think you know about yourself? I would classify myself as a libertarian-leaning liberal. I believe in tolerance for different people and different lifestyles, and don’t believe that my standards of morality or safety should be enforced by government. While I believe in personal responsibility for personal financial matters, I don’t always believe that “free” market competition is better for people than central planning by the government. I believe that a good society is best achieved by some government redistribution of wealth. I believe that part of the purpose of government is to decide which programs are good for society, and how much should be spent on them.
Generalizations about ideologies and the people within them you disagree with are disappointing. It’s important to recognize that most Americans love their country, and “you’re a communist/marxist/socialist” commentary requires knowing what a “communist/marxist/socialist” is. Liberalism and Communism are starkly different, and Marxism and Communism are not interchangeable words, given not all forms of Communism strongly yield from Marxism. Today, our understanding of political philosophy comes from a partisan influx of sources that confirm biases and do not provide an objective understanding of ideologies with which we disagree.
Our Cities Are Burning
No they aren’t. The murder rate in U.S. Cities is often associated with liberalization of these cities. This conveniently ignores the overall decline in violent crime over the past decades. In fact, in most of those liberal cities, crime is still historically low despite the recent spike. Crime is actually higher in smaller cities then it is in places like New York or Chicago when adjusted for population, and these small cities span the political spectrum. This generalization about cities and people in them is used to reinforce partisan biases.
None of my Muslim friends nor family support radical muslims and even speak out against them though they don’t have to for only the simple associate the actions of a few with those of the whole. Islam hasn’t been taken over by radicals. The majority of Islamic adherents aren’t radical. This is the perception based on vocal elements. Islam is a religion and like most religions, it has a problem with radicalism in a changing, socially evolved world. Many Muslim organizations have denounced radicalism within the religion including the Organization Of Islamic Cooperation and Al-Azhar for example. There is absolutely nothing to validate claims that even so called moderate Muslims (what is a moderate Christian) support radical muslims, other than the belief that is the reality of this world. Drawing pictures of Muhammad to show how Muslims are against free speech and the warnings of the advent of Sharia law are generalizations largely based off personal fears and biases.
Most Americans love America. We may disagree, slightly to strongly, with those opposite our ideology but that disagreement doesn’t make us “hateful” of America. In highly concentrated states of those with the same political philosophy (think appalachia or the hood), you’ll see the worst amongst those groups. Where stereotypes are more likely to be true, biases will be sadly reinforced.