How the Political Left views the Political Right, and why there will never be common ground

In the days of old, American politicians could disagree yet still compromise with one another and get the job done.  Unfortunately, since the election of President George W. Bush I have seen a dramatic change in discourse from those from the political left.

It’s not simply that the two sides disagree.  The political left views the political right as immoral for holding the beliefs they do.  If you oppose perpetual welfare benefits, you hate the poor.  If you oppose affirmative action and believe people should be judged on merit, that makes you racist.  If you oppose President Barack Obama’s policies, it’s not because they’re bad policies, it’s because you hate him because he’s black.  Opposing illegal immigration makes you racist too.  Marriage between one man and one woman?  Bad news: you hate gay people.

Discussing issues is not possible many times.  The political left won’t do it.  Instead they make the discussion about the political right’s character so that the issues themselves are never addressed.

I view the political left as wrong, they view me as hateful, racist, evil, misogynistic, elitist, privileged, and extreme.

Comments

  1. Whilst this is quite often the case, it’s refreshing that it isn’t always the case. I had a debate on same-sex marriage at my Uni last Thursday and it went exceptionally well. The organisers said they wanted an environment free of people being labelled homophobic etc. and instead wanted an environment where the issues can be discussed. Of course, there’s only so much they can do to control that, but thankfully that did happen… and I feel as though the case for traditional marriage was better received and came off better in the debate. When we cut through the noise of same-sex marriage advocacy, their arguments aren’t that strong, and there are good and strong arguments in favour of traditional marriage. Maybe that’s why same-sex marriage advocacy is normally all noise with little discussion.

    • I find many of the left’s positions are grounded in how they make people feel, not necessarily what is right. What is right is redefined as what feels right. Telling people they are wrong on moral and social issues is deemed immoral and wrong.

      Your scenario is isolated because it was intentionally kept in check. But ordinary discourse results in character assassination.

  2. Yep, I agree. Emotions can be manipulated easily, and what better way to get someone to agree with you than by manipulating emotions? It’s sad that emotional arguments are more persuasive than rational arguments.

  3. Josh,

    Your initial comment actually lends credence to John’s point. Had there not been a concerted effort to keep the discussion focused on actual arguments, there would have been the usual accusations against defenders of traditional marriage. And since the effort was made, you saw the difficulty the SSM supporters had in making a rational and legitimate case for their position. It is so with most, if not all, of the left’s positions on any given issue. They have to play the emotional game because real argument and debate fails them every time.

  4. That’s what I was thinking. There’s little motivation for the political left to enter into a proper debate about issues, checking emotions at the door, as obviously they want to win people (not necessarily arguments.) The times it does happen shows that they have a hard time arguing in favour of much of what they are trying to support (be it same-sex marriage or abortion or something else.)

  5. Reblogged this on Articles,blogs,books,videos,etc. and commented:
    I received a tweet from a black lady calling me a racist, because I tweeted this =Chris Wallace confronts Obama regime about a few of the lies Obama has been spewing over the Debt Ceiling this past week. Go Chris @FoxNews. She said I hated Obama because he is black, and that’s why I watch Fox News. I checked other tweets she had made and all were the same theme, name calling, (racist) because she disagreed. So I blocked her racist rants!!

  6. paynehollow says:

    Are there SOME on the Left who would look at mere disagreements on policy and then automatically decide those on the Right are racist, hateful bigots? Sure, some.

    But you have to acknowledge that there are some on the Right who would look at mere disagreements and then automatically decide that those on the Left are socialists, godless, amoral and hell-bound. It goes both ways, right?

    On the other hand, I don’t find people hateful or bigots because they disagree with me on policies (on marriage policies, for instance, or how to help the poor). I WAS a conservative. Still am, in many ways. Many family members and friends are politically conservative. I don’t hate them or think they are bigots simply because we disagree. I recognize that their hearts are in the right place and we’re all concerned about how best to do the right things, just disagreeing on how to get there.

    In my anecdotal experience, this casting the Other into a group of demonized ones is much more prevalent on the Right than the Left. For instance, I see far more conservative blogs instituting bans and limitations on comments from the Left than vice versa.

    Do you think this is somehow a bigger problem on the Left than it is on the Right? Do you recognize that there IS a problem on the Right on this same front?

    ~Dan Trabue

  7. paynehollow says:

    ? So you think that the Democrats, as a party, hate God? If you’re saying that, aren’t you doing the very thing you’re decrying here? And while I don’t know what you’re speaking of (booing God), but you almost certainly are taking something out of context, aren’t you? Isn’t that kind of behavior exactly part of the problem?

    ~Dan

  8. paynehollow says:

    ?? Again, what are you reading into that? That the Democrats hate God? IF you are reading that into that account, then you are blind to real world evidence. I am a registered Dem and I love God, I don’t “boo” God. Now, as most traditional Baptists, anabaptists and others would agree, we REALLY don’t want to mix God into politics, making it sound as if we think “God is on our side, and our side alone,” or that, “If you don’t agree with us, you don’t agree with God…” We are opposed to that sort of thing BECAUSE we love God and think that sort of thing is a “taking God’s name in vain” kind of behavior.

    But to read into that that we hate God would be foolish and counter to real world evidence. You DO know that many Democrats are Christians, right?

    I fear you are reading into one event something that real world evidence does not support.

    Look, would it be fair for the Left to say, “Look at the GOP, they just voted to end food programs for poor children. Since God loves children and wants us to take care of the least of these, clearly, the GOP hates God…”? No, of course not.

    I’m just asking for you to do unto others as you’d have them do unto you, brother John.

    ~Dan

  9. paynehollow says:

    I, for one, am always ready and waiting to find middle ground. I think there is a vast set of commonalities and common interests where people of good faith and good will can find much common ground. Further, I think the majority of we, the people really are thirsting for our leaders to step up and start acting like adults.

    Consider: No one wants to see children go hungry. Not the Left, not the Right. Are there not a myriad of ways that we can work together to prevent this? Faith groups on the Left and Right do this now. We can certainly do this.

    No one wants to see the US gov’t to be over-extended. We – all of us -want reasonable, smart policies that contribute to the common good. We – none of us – want to pay tax dollars that we don’t have to pay or want to see tax dollars go to goofy programs. Let’s find ways to support programs that make sense and get rid of the ones that don’t. While we’re doing that, let’s recognize that we won’t always agree on this and that’s just to be expected.

    Consider my oft-cited example of prisoner rehab: Study after study demonstrates that for every dollar spent on rehab and education for prisoners, we save TWO dollars in reduced recidivism rates. (the numbers I just offered are rounded and it depends on the program, but regardless of the program, studies consistently show a significant SAVINGS when we implement these sorts of programs.)

    Can we all agree that we want to see as many non-profts and NGOs involved in prisoner rehab and education programs, as long as they are demonstrating results? Can we not all agree that, where the private sector fails to step up/meet the need, that it is only reasonable for gov’t programs to spend $1 million to save $2 million?

    I think reasonable adults across the board should be able to agree on this and other similar ideas. I am confident that we can find plenty of middle ground on which to stand.

    ~Dan

  10. I’m inclined to agree with Dan on this issue. Though both parties can share blame for this phenomenon- it surprises me that you would trace this back to Democrats and the election of George W. Bush.
    I agree that the rhetoric has ramped up since the Bush era- but it has always been there. Progressives are “commies”, or “unamerican”. Pacifists “hate freedom”.
    I don’t think it is a coincidence that the divide between conservatives and liberals has grown since the advent of Fox News.
    I don’t think conservatives “hate the poor” or disagree with the President because he is black or hate homosexuals. I think both conservatives and progressives want what is best for society but have very different ideas of what is “best” and how to get there.

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