Progress comes from liberal thinkingAt times, I have been accused of being liberal and progressive by conservative friends.
By: Bernie Hughes, Superior Telegram
At times, I have been accused of being liberal and progressive by conservative friends.
Frequently, neither was meant as a compliment. Liberals have been defined as desiring their good works by spending more government money. Progressives are often accused of being too focused on governmental power to bring these changes about.
It seems to me, that results are often a combination.
Legislation is frequently required and funding often necessary to carry out the legislation to make the changes anticipated.
Truthfully, I often feel complimented when accused of being liberal or progressive. As I view history, it was liberals or progressives that have brought about most of our more important legislation.
I was a small hardscrabble farm boy when President Franklin Delano Roosevelt signed the legislation for our social security program. It isn’t a complete retirement program, but it has helped a lot, and in some cases, it has kept people off welfare in old age. The legislation giving women the right to vote was a welcome benefit to women in 1920. You could add a number of changes already made and ones yet-to-be made such as civil rights for women. It failed in 1982 by three votes, but it will become law as will marriage rights for same sex individuals.
I, for some time, thought homosexuality was a choice, but have since discovered that it is about 10 percent of the population in animals as well as humans are homosexual. Hopefully more will come in out of the dark shadows and live their lives with less derision.
We have one change being implemented right now, don’t we?
President Obama is implementing a health program. He and many liberals believe all Americans are entitled to health care; that requires both legislation and money. Most progressive ideas have come in that fashion. Change almost always adds cost.
Conservatives have resisted change for both reasons although cost seems to be higher on their agenda. Money plays a most important consideration.
People who have great income wish to have more. Even today when the spread of wealth is great and becoming more so, they believe our somewhat progressive taxes should be reduced.
We consistently hear from conservatives the value of the free market. It is an extra ordinary efficient economic system for those who have got and wish more. And more important, it gets the government off backs or reduces that too costly government.
On March 10, the televised 60 Minutes cited several deaths that resulted from an unregulated compound drug. The regulation was left to the states; we hear quite often how the states’ rights have been superseded by that inefficient federal government. Sad story.
Right now, I’m reading Peter Dreier’s book which is a social justice Hall of Fame, entitled, “The 100 Greatest Americans in the 20th Century.” These are individuals who had a major role in bringing about social change that we take for granted today. These individuals had a great deal to do with bringing such changes about in their particular field of interest and endeavor.
This has been very serious stuff. Allow me to close with some humorous advice gems that I received recently:
Never test the depth of water with both feet.
Experience is something you get, just after you needed it.
If you tell the truth, your memory will not be faulty.
If, at first you don’t succeed, skydiving isn’t for you.
Bernie Hughes, Ed.D, is a retired educator who resides in Superior. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.