Tuesday, November 07, 2006
Like all of my opinions, the inspiration for this article came from an incident I had in class. I was totally not doing my English homework when the conversation turned inevitably toward politics, and I say inevitably because when they're not talking about going to prom or the new Akon album, teenagers often try their hand at political punditry. "Try" is emphasized for a reason because quite frankly, teenagers make lousy pundits.
Case in point:
"I hate George W. Bush!"
"Because he looks like a monkey and Kanye West says he hates black people!"
I'm not saying I'm digging the Dubya, but these types of conversations are nothing but insult-ridden circle jerks without any moral or philosophical grounding, so it's obvious that I'm going to want to steer clear of these things whenever humanly possible. But, like so many unlucky Darfuris, innocent little me got caught in the crossfire. At least those Darfuris got to die, for what I had stumbled upon was something worse than death: having to catch an earful from a teenaged liberal.
"So Ray, what are you?"
"What the hell kind of a question is that, 'what are you?' I'm human, I'm a student at James Logan High School, and I'm available, so if you want to hook up later on, I'm all for it, babe."
" No silly, what political party do you belong to?"
"Well I guess if I had to choose, I'd be a Republican."
"OH MY GOD, YOU'RE SUCH A FREAKING FASCIST! YOU'RE THE REASON THE WORLD HATES US! YOU'RE A RACIST! I HATE YOU, YOU [expletive deleted] BUSH LOVER!"
Apart from the obvious problems I have with being called "a racist" who is "the reason the world hates us", my issues with this person's assertions run a little deeper than simple annoyance. First off, this person assumes that because I call myself "Republican", I automatically take in what the Bush Administration says as gospel.
Not true: in fact, in my estimation, George W. Bush is about as far away from my view of the Republican party as any John Kerry or Michael Moore. George W. Bush has done more to expand the power of the Federal Government. His blatant inflation of government stands in stark contrast to the traditional Republican view on government, crystallized in Ronald Reagan's first inaugural address: "Government is not the solution to our
problem. Government is the problem."
Second of all, I have an especially big problem with the use of the word "fascist". The basic definition of fascism before the Italians and Germans went and screwed it up was a governmental system by which everything—be it industry or a person's daily life—is controlled and regimented by (you guessed it) the central government. Bush's control of the Oval Office notwithstanding, this definition seems to contradict the very spirit of Reagan's Republican Party. In fact, legislating in the hopes of controlling every aspect of a nation's affairs seems more of a Democratic thing to do.
OH MY GOD! THE DEMOCRATS ARE FASCIST! I HATE THEM SO MUCH!
All joking aside, no one political party—save for the American Nazi Party—should be called fascist because the nature of the word has changed so dramatically in the mid-twentieth century that it carries some
horrible connotations, and calling anyone a fascist is tantamount to calling them a murderer.
That this article had to turn into a defense of my political ideals disgusts me. You people talk about all-encompassing acceptance and the
greatness of ideas that differ from your own when really, you're just as
intolerant as "my kind" allegedly are. For all your lofty goals and
self-righteous rhetoric, anyone who fits my description of the pompous liberal is no better than the death dealers who run this country. In the word’s of the great Matt Stone, "I hate conservatives, but I really [expletive deleted] hate liberals".