If you believe in freedom of Speech, freedom of religion, freedom of expression, or any of the basic freedom's the Constitution grants us. You might not be a progressive, although you'd like to think you are. I certainly did. I considered myself a progressive liberal, a socialist, fighting for equality for all people. The working class, Muslims, women, people of color, and other minorities. Progressives to me were people who spoke louder then the average Democrat, they were activists, in your face on equality and freedom. One of the things I've been the most vocal about since I came to the Odyssey was Islamophobia. The idea of hating on someone for their religion is disgusting to me. Being a Roman Catholic, I would be disgusted if someone was to bash me for my religion. But yet, I discovered I couldn't ignore Sharia law, something enforced in the Islamic faith, a law that allows anyone who suspects you of being gay, says you should be tossed off a building. You may not even be gay, but if someone thinks you are, it is just enough to get yourself killed. That's when I realized, we need a reformation of Islam. We've already had that with Christianity, Catholicism and even Judaism.

Unfortunately, those who criticize Islam, such as Sam Harris, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, and Bill Maher (who I still despise for bashing all religions,) are accused by many people, specifically liberals, including myself, of being racist. I'm not denying that there are people who do hate Islam and there hate the followers, as people. But what the three people I mentioned above have in common is that they hate the idea of Islam, not the people who follow it. Of course they're going to question why someone follows a certain faith, but they don't hate you for it. They hate Sharia law, they hate how women are oppressed in the Muslim world, and they hate extremists. For us liberals, who push for women's rights, and LGBT rights, we should hate Sharia law. But we hate the travel ban made on seven Muslim countries as well, so of course we are going to reduce all the arguments made against Islam to "that's racist." This is hypocritical especially since most Liberal's I know will bash Christian's for anything they do that's bigoted or evil.

I am one of a few Democrats who are willing to admit that I am pro-life. I get accused all the time of being sexist and anti-feminist because of this.They always say, if you oppose abortion then you are not a feminist. Funny too, because I never even identified myself as a feminist to begin with, and I still don't consider myself a feminist. They first thing most feminists have attacked because of my pro-life stance is that I am Roman Catholic. The Roman Catholic church has been one of the most vocal opponents of abortion. As a Roman Catholic Democrat living in a more secular age, t I am very well aware that church and state are separate which I support, so I never preach my beliefs, and never use them in any argument. But yet, feminists use that against me.

I support gay rights, including gay marriage. One would think that I believe any private baker, no matter what religion should bake a cake for a gay wedding upon request. But I don't. Forcing a christian baker who owns a private business, to bake a cake against his religious beliefs is in and of itself, a violation of the freedom of religion. Dave Rubin, an openly gay man, even said, "I'll just find another baker."

Just by reading everything above, you might think, I'm not even a Democrat anymore. I'm certainly not a progressive liberal anymore. I now consider myself a classical liberal. As a classical liberal, my saying is "I may not agree with what you say, but I will defend your right to say it." I may not agree with those who support abortion, but those who support it have every right to. They have every right to criticize me as long as they are aware I have a right to be pro-life.

As a classical liberal, I don't just push for diversity of race, religion, ethnicity, expression, etc.) I also push for diversity of thought. This means that Republicans have a right to voice their opinions, even if you don't like them. A conservative student should have every right to wear a "Make America Great Again" cap in public without being attacked for it. As someone who is pro-life, I should have the right to believe that life begins at the moment of conception despite a majority telling me the opposite.

I believe liberals done the political left a disservice by pushing what they believe to be the right way of thinking, and not basic freedoms objectively. That means if you are a critic of Islam, then you're a racist. If you oppose abortion, you're a sexist. If you're a Christian, you're dumb. If you're a Republican....well forget about it you basically lose status as a human in the eyes of the Left. I know I probably did because of this article, and I'm a Democrat, but then again being a straight white Catholic male doesn't help as well.

So for the Liberals:

If I am discussing a view you don't agree with as I just did in this article, and you have a strong opposing opinion on what I'm talking about. Listen to me and then discuss with me, why you disagree with me, and argue for your side of the debate. If you resort to calling anyone, racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, etc.) You probably aren't even listening to the argument. And since I don't believe in "trigger warnings" although the Odyssey might ask me to put a trigger warning on the article, I would suggest you either: click out of the page or get up and leave the room.

I would rather have both of us debate and discuss our opposing views in real time. Let's have a rational conversation and maybe we can find a few things we might actually agree on. You'll be surprised.

So that being said...

To the protesters who go out and destroy other people's property because a President we didn't like got elected. To the people who assault Trump supporters. To anyone who treats there opinions and views as gospel, (and I certainly don't), you do not represent Democracy, let alone any of the freedoms we are granted here in the United States. And that needs to change because I have never been more ashamed to even consider myself a Democrat in my life until I discovered this.

Thank you and I hope you are all enjoying your summer!!