Liberals are ‘conservative’

We “liberals” want life to be better for everyone. As one is lifted, all are lifted—such progress enhances opportunities for all and enriches everyone in the chain of commerce—a goal of most “conservatives.”

We “liberals” dare to protect our environment—to have clean air to breathe, to have fresh water to drink, and have the oceans safe for life to prosper. We are conserving our planet and its resources for our children, grandchildren, and unborn generations to come.

We “liberals” wish to keep government out of our lives and protest the intrusions created in the Patriot Act by our so-called “war on terrorism” and the flaccid willingness of the fearful to squander our freedoms in the name of “security.” This attitude was a founding principle of the “conservative” Republican Party.

We “liberals” rail against corporate theft of our time and jobs. We find NAFTA and WTO rules anti-democratic and unfair to Americans. We wish to conserve our right to a living wage and access to prosperity.

Those who call themselves “conservative” should instead call themselves “no changers.” Futile is the battle against change—it is a losing cause—for progressive ideas are strong and do eventually come to be accepted as “the way things should be.” Indeed, outside of the United States, the word “liberal” politically has the exact opposite meaning as it has here—to free the people from oppressive government—not creating more regulation and control of every little detail of our lives. What I see of liberal activity now leads me to conclude we have begun to act in the manner of that worldview.

I invite all my conservative friends to evaluate what they really believe in—what they want to accomplish in this world and what they want to leave behind—then decide what label they really should be wearing.

Then, when November rolls around, I ask them to think hard on whether they wish to stand in the way of progress or aid the rich and powerful in compromising our future.

Allen Penticoff is Rockford area co-chairman of Dennis Kucinich for President 2004.

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