I’m a Conservative and as a Conservative I have been watching far too many pundits and politicians bastardize the very principles I try to live by for their own agendas. Somehow these folks think you can warp a set of ideals to fit whatever nonsense they’re pushing whether it’s to get you to read their blogs, watch or listen to their shows or even worse, to vote for them in the upcoming election and just NO. *sad trambone*
At the end of the day there are some basic tenets of conservatism that do not change:
- All people are endowed by their Creator with the inalienable rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness – fancy way of saying our rights are natural and not granted by any government.
- Limited government is a necessary evil required to maintain a civil society but a gigantic, overreaching government undermines individual liberty.
- Justice is justice. Equal justice under equal laws – there is no such thing as reproductive justice or social justice or unicorns and leprechauns justice. The notion that certain types of people should have more justice because of sex, color, creed, ability or preference completely takes away from the idea of equality because special is never equal.
- Keep government LOCAL. And if you think about this one, the federal government is really the opposite because for most of us it is far far far away.
- Life is a series of choices which result in wins and losses and the individual must be responsible for both.
- There is no such thing as a good tax.
- We the people know best what is in our own self-interest, not the government.
See? Pretty basic. And if you live by these principles you’re likely a conservative but if not you don’t get to change the rules to fit you – that’s just not how it works. Sorry folks, you can’t decide eminent domain is AOK and totes conservative because your candidate likes it a lot… if your candidate likes the idea of the federal government taking land for personal gain he or she is not a conservative.
Plenty of people and movements have tried to exploit conservatism for their own means, for example the strange uprising of nationalists who claim racism is a conservative principle. Ummm. No. Wrong. Totally wrong. Absolutely crazy wrong. No. Conservatism focuses on the individual, not their color, not their sex, not who they love, not who or what they worship, not if they did or didn’t sleep in a Holiday Inn Express last night. None of that matters, just the individual and their inherent rights.
And that’s the point I’m trying to make – conservatism is simple but not convenient, it is not a moniker you can choose one day because you think it might score you some points. It’s not a club, it’s not a marketing ploy and sorry crazy feminists, it’s not a bunch of old white men sitting around plotting to control your vaginas.
No. It is simply a principled and I believe ingenious way to live. Let’s not complicate it.