9 Things I'm Tired Of Hearing From Conservatives

9 Things I'm Tired Of Hearing From Conservatives

Nothing infuriates more than people who haven't done their research.

It's 2017. This is the year of political shitstorms and absolute disasters. As rumors for calls of Trump's impeachment begin to loom around us, and the political shitstorm grows wider and more encompassing, I am all of a sudden encountered by the things I, a liberal not-quite-Democrat but definitely politically-informed voter, am so sick and tired of hearing from my conservative friends and family about the current hot button topics.

SEE ALSO: Dear Millennial Republicans, Stop Apologizing

1. "I'm not against gay people, I'm against gay marriage."

This statement is often followed by something along the lines of, "It ruins the sanctity of marriage." And Kim Kardashian's 72-day marriage doesn't? Members of the LGTBQ+ community are as much human as the rest of us, and they too deserve the same liberties. Let me backtrack. It is their fundamental human right to have the same liberties as straight people. Finally, it's time to erase the argument that also includes the statement, "Gay people didn't exist when the founding fathers wrote the Constitution and Bill of Rights!" That statement is nowhere close to factual.

2. "I'm only against illegal immigration, I'm not anti-immigrant!"

Okay. There is no difference when all is said and done. Laws against illegal immigrants end up profiling the ENTIRE Latinx community, and once it becomes institutionalized profiling, those who fight for that legislation end up being very anti-immigrant.

3. "I'm only fiscally conservative."

I am guilty of saying this before I did my research. First of all, that's not a thing. Second of all, if you were really concerned about the economy, historically, you should probably vote Democrat.

4. "All lives matter!!!!!!!"

Hey, you aren't wrong. All lives do matter. However, there are some lives who aren't victims of institutionalized racism. This racism results in wrongful police stops that far too often result in shots being fired for reasons such as, going to a gas station to get candy (Trayvon Martin), playing with a BB gun in a park (Tamir Rice), or simply having a broken taillight (Philando Castile). Meanwhile, the man who shot up a (black) Church in Charleston was given a bulletproof vest and kindly escorted to a waiting police vehicle when apprehended. This is only my personal opinion, but I believe the Second Amendment has created a group of second-class citizens composed of anyone of color. These citizens can be too easily killed by a gun-toting, Second Amendment-crazed person just for fitting a damn stereotype.

5. "I support tax breaks for the rich because my parents worked hard for their money."

That's probably true - but your parents are also probably white and can afford an increase in taxes. Statistically, people of color and women tend to be in the lower economic classes where they are constantly struggling to make ends meet. On average, white families are worth SIXTEEN PERCENT more than black families. Latinx people only earn eight percent of what a white family does. Are you claiming that black and Latinx families aren't working as hard as your family? (If the answer to that question was yes, congrats! That's institutionalized racism at its core). Lower taxes for the lower classes literally puts food on the table.

6. "People are just mooching off the government."

First of all, food stamps do not put a strain on the government. They actually help stabilize it. 54% of people on food stamps live below 50% of the poverty line and 34% live between 50 and 100% below the poverty line. In 2011, the poverty line for a family of 3 was $18,530. You try feeding, clothing and housing 3 people for less than $18,530 a year. Along that same vein is the welfare issue, which most Republicans want to cut. 35% of the country's population is on welfare, with 31% getting off welfare in a year and 43% between 3 and 4 years. So, there aren't exactly a whole lot of people who spend their entire lives "mooching off the government."

7. "Liberals are snowflakes whose feelings are too easily hurt."

Well yeah, when you consistently marginalize, diminish, and dehumanize my friends and family, often those you don't even know, I'm gonna get a little upset.

8. Just about anything that comes out of Tomi Lahren's mouth.

Enough said.

9. "There is no war on women, they just need to suck it up."

Oh, really? What about Trump's first 100 days? Or the multitude of anti-abortion and abstinence-only laws and legalizing the murder of abortion doctors? Or the gender wage gap? Or the stronger emergence of rape culture and increases in the number of rapes, but a decrease in the number of rapists convicted? (I'm looking at you, Brock Turner.) Or jacking up the prices of birth control under the AHCA? Or the fact that 3 women are murdered every day from domestic violence and 1 in 4 women will be the victims of domestic violence at some point in their lives? But you're right. There isn't a war against women.

And hey, I'm not saying we liberal Democrats have all the right answers, or even any of the right answers. But we live in a day and age where we dance around this notion that the amount of money you make or where you were born, determines your worth in this society. It's 2017, people. Let's start compromising.

Cover Image Credit: Paul Ryan - Twitter

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The Dangers Of Ideology And The Importance Of Free Speech & Debate

Universities are currently policing thought, indoctrinating students into a radical egalitarian ideology, and crushing dissenting opinion.

It’s truly amazing to consider how quickly the culture on college campuses has changed over the last several years. Once staunch defenders of speech and academic freedom, modern universities are quickly turning into ideological echo chambers, indoctrinating students into a radical left-wing egalitarian worldview, while crushing dissenting opinion.

The disturbingly Orwellian trend to quell free expression on campuses can best be illustrated by an event that unfolded last year at James Madison University’s freshman orientation, when “student leaders” distributed a list of 35 things that incoming students should avoid saying, including phrases such as “you have a pretty face,” “love the sinner, hate the sin,” “we’re all part of the human race,” “I treat all people the same,” “people just need to pick themselves up by their bootstraps,” among other expressions.

You might find yourself laughing this off as nonsense, an isolated set of events perpetuated by a select group of fringe radicals. Unfortunately, I can assure you that this is not an isolated incident. In addition to the slew of protests that erupted at universities last year in response to conservative speakers being invited to campus, these kinds of events are indicative of a larger, and more pernicious attempt by the radical left to control the linguistic territory.

At universities across America, the campus left now demands that people accept certain preconditions for discussion. Not the kind of reasonable preconditions such as “treat people with respect,” or “don’t resort to personal attacks.” Rather, It is demanded that you accept a neo-Marxian worldview, rooted in the notion that the world is nothing more than a power struggle between two groups of people: those who oppress and those who are oppressed. They demand that people accept notions like white-male privilege as axiomatic – not to be debated – and force people to acknowledge how they've been privileged by the current socio-economic structure.

Refusing to accept these presuppositions not only bars someone from participating in the discussion. To challenge an idea, such as white privilege, is to reject the fact that racism and bigotry exist in our society. To challenge the notion that being white necessarily means you must be more privileged than a person of color is akin to blasphemy. To push against the idea that certain classes of people in America are ‘victims of systemic oppression’ is to deny the humanity and individual experiences of people of color, women, and other minority groups.

The campus left emphatically espouse the notion that “the personal is political.” Thus they believe, unequivocally, that the primary responsibility of the University should be to ensure students from “diverse cultural backgrounds” feel safe – and by safe they mean “not having their identities challenged;” and by identities they are referring to their belief systems – the lens by which they perceive the word.

From the perspective of a radical leftist, to participate in debate is not seen as merely engaging in criticism of some abstract idea. To challenge an idea is to challenge someone’s identity, and to challenge someone’s identity is to debate their humanity.

And that is one of the axiomatic rules of the campus Left – you cannot debate someone’s humanity.

Indeed, with more than a fifth of college undergrads now believing its okay to use physical force to silence a speaker who makes “offensive or hurtful statement,” the future of the First Amendment itself is currently uncertain.

What exactly is so dangerous about this movement?

For starters, the freedom of speech has wrongly been construed as just another value that we in the West hold in high regard. But it is more than a Right that we share as citizens of this nation. It is, ultimately, the mechanism by which keep our psyches and societies functioning.

See, most people just aren’t that good at thinking. I don't mean this as a sleight against anyone, but we’re all insufficient and we have limited awareness of most things because we just can’t know everything. We rely on communication with one another to facilitate the process of learning about things outside our realm of knowledge. Often we have to, first, stumble around like the blithering idiots we are, espousing our biased beliefs in a public forum, and subjecting our ideas to criticism before we can properly orient our thoughts.

When the open exchange of ideas is allowed, you get the opportunity for multiple people to put forward their biased oversimplifications and engage in debate that raises the resolution of the particular question and answer at hand. Ideas are hit with hammers, combed for contradictions, inadequacies and even falsehoods. On an individual level, this kind of scrutiny sharpens the schema you use to navigate the world because other people can tell you things you can’t know by yourself.

Maybe it’s an opinion espoused, or a behavior that manifests itself, or a misconception you hold- in any event, subjecting your beliefs to criticism is, in the short term sometimes painful because we often learn things about the world and ourselves that are uncomfortable; but, in the long term, it is the only way method we have for moving closer towards something that more closely resembles truth – and if not anything true, at least something less wrong. As a result, the lens by which you look at the world becomes clearer.

Further, it is also through a collective process of dialectic that we identify problems in our societies, formulate solutions, and come to some sort of consensus.

Thus the right to say what you believe should not just considered as "just another value." It's a conical value, without which all the other values we hold dear, that people have fought so hard, in such an unlikely manner, to preserve and produce all disappear.

Without it, there can be no progress. Without it, individuals abdicate their responsibility to engage in the sacred process of discovery and renewal. Without it, we can’t think. Without it, there can be no truth. Without it, there can be nothing but nihilistic psychopathology. The end result is a populist that is not only afraid to say what they think, but that doesn't even know what they think because they haven’t been allowed to stumble around in the dark to find some tiny fragment of light.

Therefore, when we consider placing restrictions on the freedom of speech we must do so with the most extreme caution. By setting ridiculous preconditions for discussion, the campus left not only makes the process by which we solve the problems with our society more difficult, but also, if taken to its extreme, it can lead to totalitarianism.

In the wake of dozens of campus protests last year, universities are now in a position where they have to choose between two incompatible values: truth or social justice. The former will lead us to a greater understanding, while the latter can only divide.

Cover Image Credit: Teen Vogue

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Being An English Speaker Is A Privileged Status

Multi-lingual is the way to go

English is not the official language of the United States of America. But even if it was, a country apparently founded on the idea of valuing every citizen as a free individual could do a much better job welcoming people who do not speak English.

While it is natural that one language became the most common, and that this has simplified many processes, this same simplification is not afforded to those who do not speak the language.

Language barriers can reduce one’s job opportunities, meaning that even if one has degrees and plenty of experience, many jobs are simply not available. Many employers are unfortunately unaccepting of those who do not speak English fluently, and some even discriminate against those who do not natively speak English.

Education becomes extremely complex for non-English-speakers. On the student side, while many schools offer English as a Second Language programs, which is wonderful, it should be acknowledged that these students face more work and less support than students who are native English speakers. To add to this, if parents do not speak English, communication from the school or with teachers becomes harder to access.

One of the greatest privileges of English speakers lies in healthcare. They can be sure that they will find a doctor who speaks their language and can clearly explain their medical situation in that language. The same goes for psychologists, social workers, and others in the health professions.

This becomes especially complicated for those who speak languages that are not commonly studied.

A friend of mine who teaches was mentioning recently that while there are many students and families in her district who speak Arabic, there are so few people working in psychology, social work, or other support services who speak the language that for the district to access them is not only difficult but expensive.

This too often means that schools fail to offer students and parents speaking these less-commonly studied languages sufficient aid.

So what is the answer? To adopt English as an official language would be so wrong in our country full of diverse and wonderful languages, backgrounds, and cultures. Instead of attempting to make English more and more widespread, we should focus our efforts on ensuring that people in this country who do not speak English can receive all of the same support as those who do speak English.

Some of this lies in ensuring that systems and institutions offer resources in several languages and that employers will not discriminate against those who are not native English speakers.

Much of the solution, however, is on us, especially if we are students entering a people-oriented profession. In fact, in all professions, becoming multi-lingual does not merely open doors for us but creates a society where more people have access to the services they need.

Cover Image Credit: Maialisa

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