Friday, April 27, 2007

Life as a party pooper

You are at a social function. One of the guests with whom you are conversing casually mentions what bastards the Republicans are and how they want to kill old people and starve little kids. Believe me, I've been there. More than once, I have bitten my tongue, given a little grunt, and changed the subject. Why? The other person had no problem making his views known; why did I feel it necessary to hold my tongue just to keep things civil? Let's make it clear that nowadays, I am not so quick to clam up. I guess I get braver as I get older, and I have called people on their comments and made them defend them. Rather than turning meek, I think its rather fun to put these kind of people on the spot.

In the past though, I think I didn't speak out when I should have, because it is tougher to be a conservative; because you have to be the adult. You have to be the one who says, "No!" No, you cannot spend billions of dollars on welfare. No, you cannot give black people reparations for something that happened 150 years ago; No, it's not right for a single mother to have 10 kids. As a parent and a teacher, I know that I am not going to be very popular when I tell my children or my students, "No", but I realize that it must be done. I don't listen to Rush Limbaugh much anymore, but long ago, he said it best. He said that it is easy to be a liberal because all you have to do is just say "Yes!" to everything. No matter what the cost, just start a new social program, or pass another regulation.

Andrew Klavan from City Journal (a quarterly magazine that I wish was monthly) has produced an amazing article that verbalizes the feeling I as a conservative have had my entire life. Here is an excerpt to get you started:
Of course, like everything, this candor has its price. A politics that depends on honesty will be, by nature, often impolite. Good manners and hypocrisy are intimately intertwined, and so conservatives, with their gimlet-eyed view of the world, are always susceptible to charges of incivility. It’s not really nice, you know, to describe things as they are...

This, I believe, is the reason conservative politicians so often lose their nerve, why they back down in debate even when they’re clearly right. No one wants to be condemned as a brute—especially not conservatives, who still retain some vague memory of how worthy it is to be a lady or gentleman...
Read the entire article - it is a gem.

Good Day to You, Sir

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