Tuesday, January 25, 2011

You're a conservative?

Yes, I am. In fact, I am a conservative Republican, which makes me worse right? Scary as it seems, my values and thinking line up with the Republican party, particularly of the conservative ideology. There are three ideologies or "flavors" of the Republican party: conservative, moderate, and libertarian; I align myself with the conservative flavor. Why would I be a conservative?

Aren't conservatives rednecks?

Depends on what you mean by redneck. If your definition of redneck is a person that lives in the southern United States, then I hate to alarm you, but there are liberals in the good ole south. If your definition of redneck is an intolerant, acid tongued, white male; hey, liberals meet that criteria too. However, if you intend redneck to mean a person that holds the government should have fiscal and social conservative responsibility, then yes, all conservatives are rednecks.

The "conservatives are rednecks" argument is nothing more than an ad-hominem, when the liberal is depleted of good arguments for their position. I say that because there are actual "rednecks" that are liberal democrats and conservative republicans; they're on both sides because the word redneck does not define a political position.

Aren't conservatives racist?

This is a terrible, terrible, terrible, spear that is thrown at conservatives. However, I won't say it's a stupid question because there aren't any stupid questions, just stupid answers. Conservatives are not guilty of this accusation at all because conservatives are for equal-opportunity and anti-welfare, irregardless of a person's ethnicity. Liberals, on the other hand, could be easily hit with the "racist spear," just look at affirmative action. Not that affirmative action is totally worthless, but it does discourage working hard and personal responsibility.

Aren't conservatives intolerant?

I think this is just another ad-hominem disguised as an argument. Look, a person can be intolerant regardless of party affiliation in my opinion. What we must do with this question is ask what tolerant means. Tolerant means showing respect for opinions of others, correct? Well, how come the conservative is blasted with the intolerant insult when the liberal isn't tolerant of the conservative's opinion? Could we be fair here? The conservative should not be labeled intolerant when the liberal is guilty of the same thing. Take the plank out of your eye before you try and pick the twig out of your opponent's eye.

Why do conservatives push their morals on me?

This is a fair question. People do not want morality shoved in their face, especially when they are guilty of committing an immoral action. This is a sensitive issue, but I'm willing to answer the question. Conservatives, for the most part, believe there is a moral standard in the universe and that living up to it is the best way to live a happy and full life. Now, we also recognize that people fall short of this moral standard, but that doesn't mean that there isn't a moral standard at all. Conservatives aren't unaware of man's shortcomings! Denial of the standard because man cannot live up to the standard just results in moral chaos or nihilism and neither are good for society.

Dinesh D'Souza sums up conservatism:

"Conservatives recognize that there are two principles in human nature—good and evil—and these are in constant conflict. Given the warped timber of humanity, conservatives seek a social structure that helps to bring out the best in human nature and suppress man’s lower or base impulses. Conservatives support capitalism because it is a way of steering our natural pursuit of self-interest toward the material betterment of society at large. Conservatives insist that there are evil regimes and destructive forces in the world that cannot be talked out of their nefarious objectives; force is an indispensable element of international relations. Finally conservatives support autonomy when it is attached to personal responsibility—when people are held accountable for their actions—but they also believe in the indispensability of moral incubators (the family, the church, civic institutions) that are aimed at instructing people to choose virtue over vice."1

That's why conservatives "push" their moral standard on others. However, it's not the conservative's moral standard, it's an objective moral standard recognized by everyone.

So, why am I conservative? I believe conservatives have an accurate understanding of the human nature. One's understanding of human nature constructs one's worldview. In my opinion, conservatives have it right (no pun intended), not only for me, but for America. When following the evidence, you can see that conservative policies can not only produce a good society, but also reach liberal goals of peace and social justice.


1. Dinesh D'Souza, Letters to a Young Conservative (Basic Books, 2002), pg.

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