Political litmus test
by Chris on Saturday, February 19, 2011 at 6:47am
I got this email forwarded from a friend. It gave me a good chuckle.
A pre-note, though; I RARELY put anything political on facebook, because I don’t want to start fights. Anything mean-spirited (on either side) WILL be deleted. Any complaints about this policy WILL be deleted. I want my facebook to be a friendly, positive, G-rated place, so if you can’t find anything good to say, don’t say anything at all. Discussion or debate on this is fine, but let’s keep it civilized.
A young woman was about to finish her first year of college. Like so many others her age, she considered herself to be a very liberal Democrat, and among other liberal ideals, was very much in favor of higher taxes to support more government programs; in other words, redistribution of wealth.
She was deeply ashamed that her father was a rather staunch Republican, a feeling she openly expressed. Based on the lectures that she had participated in, and the occasional chat with a professor, she felt that her father had for years harbored an evil, selfish desire to keep what he thought should be his.
One day she was challenging her father on his opposition to higher taxes on the rich and the need for more government programs. The self-professed objectivity proclaimed by her professors had to be the truth and she indicated so to her father. He responded by asking how she was doing in school.
Taken aback, she answered rather haughtily that she had a 4.0 GPA, and let him know that it was tough to maintain, insisting that she was taking a very difficult course load and was constantly studying, which left her no time to go out and party like other people she knew. She didn’t even have time for a boyfriend, and didn’t really have many college friends, because she spent all her time studying.
Her father listened and then asked, ‘How is your friend Audrey doing?’ She replied, ‘ Audrey is barely getting by. All she takes are easy classes, she never studies, and she barely has a 2.0 GPA. She is so popular on campus; college for her is a blast. She’s always invited to all the parties and lots of times she doesn’t even show up for classes because she’s too hung over.’
Her wise father asked his daughter, ‘Why don’t you go to the Dean’s office and ask him to deduct 1.0 off your GPA and give it to your friend who only has a 2.0. That way you will both have a 3.0 GPA, and certainly that would be a fair and equal distribution of GPA.’ The daughter, visibly shocked by her father’s suggestion, angrily fired back, ‘That’s a crazy idea, how would that be fair! I’ve worked really hard for my grades! I’ve invested a lot of time, and a lot of hard work! Audrey has done next to nothing toward her degree. She played while I worked my tail off!’
The father slowly smiled, winked and said gently, ‘Welcome to the Republican party.’ If anyone has a better explanation of the difference between Republican and Democrat I’m all ears.
If you ever wondered what side of the fence you sit on, this is a great test!
Conservative versus liberal:
If a conservative doesn’t like guns, he doesn’t buy one; if a liberal doesn’t like guns, he wants all guns outlawed.
If a conservative is a vegetarian, he doesn’t eat meat; if a liberal is a vegetarian, he wants all meat products banned for everyone.
If a conservative is homosexual, he quietly leads his life; if a liberal is homosexual, he demands legislated respect.
If a conservative is down-and-out, he thinks about how to better his situation; a liberal wonders who is going to take care of him.
If a conservative doesn’t like a talk show host, he switches channels. Liberals demand that those they don’t like be shut down.
If a conservative is a non-believer, he doesn’t go to church. A liberal non-believer wants any mention of God and religion silenced.
You and Tom like this.
You know I think it is funny we make these generalizations about liberals and conservatives that are not really true. We say things like Republicans hate minorities and poor people and Liberals want to take all our wealth away and turn us i…nto China. This is what were told at least. The truth is that we all want about the same thing, maybe not always, but mostly. This article is based upon a logical fallacy, false analogy. As a moderate liberal I do not believe in most of these things. The exceptions are these, homosexuals demand legislated respect because if they do not they are found dead on the side of the road and while I believe in higher taxes and better government programs, there is a limit to this. There is a fundamental ideological difference here, I don’t see it helping those are lazy and don’t want to work, but those, because of circumstances out of their control, need help. Let’s drop all of the bullshit generalizations and have a real conversation about ideology.
As a moderate conservative, I agree with most of what you’re saying 🙂
Trust me, I’m NOT trying to say that we should get rid of all government programs, because, just this week, I almost needed to take advantage of one (unemployment)! Howev…er, I think we’d both agree that there ARE some lazy bums who get free rides from the government, and I’d bet both of us would agree that that should stop. The only question is how to do it in a way that doesn’t hurt those in genuine need.
Re: homosexuals, I’d be a little careful there for several reasons. First, you’re saying that we should legislate respect for a minority who is hated by another minority (I’d submit that 99% of people really don’t care either way what someone’s sexual orientation is, as long as they don’t make a public show of it – public shows of heterosexuality can be just as creepy as public shows of homosexuality!). To put it differently, you’re advocating making hatred illegal or legislating morality. Morality has to come from within, not without, because laws that govern what goes on inside someone’s head can’t be enforced.
Second, if you want to truly respect a minority group, and be able to say that they are truly equal, then, at least in law, they should be treated no differently than the majority. They should have no extra perks; nor any penalties.
Third, ok, let’s for a minute say that we can have equal respect for a given minority, while treating them differently than the majority. I still say we shouldn’t do it and here’s why: if we are going to make special programs for African-Americans and homosexuals, then why can’t we have a program for left-handed South African-Lithuanian-Americans (I’m pretty sure I’m the only one out there)? If we start giving extra perks to one group, if we want to be fair, we should give perks to ALL groups, and that would be a herculean task.
I think the only way to ensure respect for all groups is to teach our children, when they meet someone, to make the flash-judgment, “This is a member of Homo sapiens, a human person, just like me. If I cut them, they will bleed like me. If I love them, they will be happy like me. They want the same thing I do; the details may be different, but we both want to be loved and accepted, and we both want the opportunity to succeed.” Until we can get people to view each other like that, there’s no point in trying to legislate respect.
I now yield the soap box 😉
I like your soap box.
Let me know if I can post it on my blog.