I’m a white, middle-aged, male, conservative Christian.
I even voted for Trump.
Still reading? Cool.
Look, I know that, in the eyes of many people, I am what is wrong with the United States, if not with the world. And I’m not looking for a fight here–there’s way too much animosity flowing over the airwaves and through cyberspace as it is. I haven’t come to defend myself, or to mock, or to point fingers. I come to ask a serious, thoughtful question of my liberal friends:
Do I have to be a hater?
I mean, do you think it is possible that the positions I take on political and social issues are the result of my honest beliefs and truly reflect what I think is best for society, or must they spring from hate? Is it reasonable to assume that I am an intelligent, compassionate, caring person who sees some of the same problems that you do, but who envisions different solutions? Does your worldview allow for this disagreement without branding me a minion of evil?
I sure hope so.
Social media can be a great means of communication, but it tends to favor extreme viewpoints. Stereotypes get reinforced. The stereotype of the Liberal that many conservatives hold is that they are immature, short-sighted, and ignorant of real world cause and effect. Conservatives, for their part, are seen by the Left as selfish, hateful, corrupt, and multi-phobic.
And we wonder why we can’t have a decent discussion.
Here’s what I’d like to do.
I’d like to have a decent discussion.
Over the next weeks, I plan to post several short articles explaining what I think are Mainstream Conservatism’s views on some of the big issues facing our culture. You know–the stuff that spawns the name-calling and mocking two-dimensional memes and desire for safe spaces. I plan to speak respectfully and with an open mind. I ask you, my liberal friend, to listen with the same respect and, if you wish, thoughtfully engage my ideas.
We’re looking for free speech…not hate speech.
So look out for the first of these articles in about a week–I do have a day job, after all. Let’s see what reasoned discussion looks like.
If your ideas can’t stand up to a little good, old-fashioned debate, then your ideas are weak. Or you are.