One of my pet peeves is that words actually have meanings and people tend to misuse them all the time. The Progressive Left is the master of this, actually changing the meaning of words to fit their narrative. For example, Planned Parenthood provides "women's healthcare". No they don't. They perform abortions. Throngs of people breaking windows, assaulting others and lighting stuff on fire is not a "protest". It's a riot. Finally the folks in the streets participating are not "anarchists". They want free birth control, free healthcare and free tuition. Anarchists actually believe in the self governance through participation in voluntary institutions, not Obamacare.
Now for the most maddening misuse of language. When folks on the political Right call Democrats and their grassroots activists "liberals". In reality, nothing could be further from the truth. And I am going to tell you why we need to knock it off.
The political Left has evolved into a completely illiberal movement. Liberalism throughout European and American history was defined by the hallmarks of free markets, individual property rights, free expression, individual freedom and freedom from unwarranted government intrusion. According to Encyclopedia Britannica:
"Liberalism, political doctrine that takes protecting and enhancing the freedom of the individual to be the central problem of politics. Liberals typically believe that government is necessary to protect individuals from being harmed by others; but they also recognize that government itself can pose a threat to liberty. As the revolutionary American pamphleteer Thomas Paine expressed it in “Common Sense” (1776), government is at best “a necessary evil.” Laws, judges, and police are needed to secure the individual’s life and liberty, but their coercive power may also be turned against him. The problem, then, is to devise a system that gives government the power necessary to protect individual liberty but also prevents those who govern from abusing that power."
Hmmmm. The party of Mr. I Have A Pen And A Phone are the Liberals? The same guy whose administration lost a higher percentage of cases in front of the Supreme Court than any modern President? Of course they aren't. What Barack Obama and the current iteration of the Democratic party actually espouse are Progressive values and Fabian Socialist principles. Progressives truly see the Constitution as a fluid document and are responsible for genius reforms such as the popular election of Senators and the 16th Amendment which allowed for unbridled Federal taxation.
These moves paved the way for the Fabian wet dream of crippling the federal system in the United States, centralizing power to a group of folks who are supposedly smarter than you in the central government, and an expansive welfare state. If you have never heard of Fabian Socialism the best description I have seen comes from Jerry Bowyer in his article for Forbes "Barack Obama, Fabian Socialist" in 2008:
"Fabians believed in gradual nationalization of the economy through manipulation of the democratic process. Breaking away from the violent revolutionary socialists of their day, they thought that the only real way to effect “fundamental change” and “social justice” was through a mass movement of the working classes presided over by intellectual and cultural elites."
It is no wonder that Baby Boomers have moved to the political Right over time. The generation of college educated working class kids that burned their bras, started the Free Speech movement in Berkeley, fought for civil rights and defined speaking truth to power in the modern era looked around. By 2008 they were stuck in a party that sought to divide us, insists on conformity and limits choice and individual freedom in almost everything other than whether or not you get to kill an unborn child.
What started as a tendency to divide people into the have's and the have not's during the Industrial Revolution has evolved to the modern Progressive strategy of dividing by every possible characteristic. Gender, race, sexuality, economic status, disability and most recently geography just to name a few. And if you don't subscribe to their views about any of the issues facing these groups you are a racist, misogynist, xenophobe Nazi who needs to check their privilege if you are white or be shamed if you are a member of one of the said minority groups and dare to utter a non-conforming opinion. I fully expect Netroots Nation will soon include a policy work group for Asian female to male transgender midgets with asthma. And I am not kidding.
So just stop referring to the Democrats and their Far Left grassroots organizations as Liberals. Overall the vast majority of all synonyms for liberal are positive characteristics. There is nothing positive about the collectivism advocated by the political Left, unless you are a political or intellectual elite. For the rest of us, it just makes our lives equally shitty. There is nothing positive about the shaming of large groups of people for their values and ideals because they don't conform. There is certainly nothing positive about the politics of personal destruction, property damage and violence the political Left endorses and encourages to shut down dissent, intimidate their fellow citizens or force compliance with their agenda.
There is a reason that Debbie Wasserman-Schultz was stumped when she was asked to differentiate between the Democratic Party and Socialists during the Democratic Primary. As of 2016, you simply couldn't. There is also a reason that since the Democrats lost an election their Far Left grassroots organizations have gone on a nationwide temper tantrum. The slow march of Socialism through our institutions of government, the media, education and even entertainment advocated by the Fabians came to an abrupt end with the rise and election of Donald Trump.
The media and entertainment industries have never been faced with a population who shrugs off their influence so readily or loudly in modern memory. The Democrats have been decimated at the state and local level and now are in the minority at the Federal level. So these activists have embraced the tactics of the revolutionary working class of the late 19th and early 20th Century while lacking any real moral claim to being oppressed because nothing else is working. The mask is slipping and their policy goals are become readily apparent.
So let's finish this. Stop calling them liberal. They aren't. As if to prove my point, they went on a destructive violent rampage last night to shut down a speech from an openly gay, Jewish immigrant who has the freedom to call his speaking tour "Dangerous Faggot". And you know what? To the tolerant Far Left he is. Because he says things like this:
"Don't fight identity politics with identity politics. White pride, white nationalism, white supremacy is not the way to go. The way to go is reminding them and yourselves that you should be aspiring to values and ideas. You should be focusing on what unites people, not what drives them apart. And you shouldn't give a shit about skin color. You shouldn't give a shit about sexuality. You shouldn't give a shit about gender. And you should be deeply suspicious of the people who do." - Milo Yiannopoulos
Terrifying isn't it? Maybe if you're a Fabian Socialist.......