sábado, 2 de julio de 2011

Ten Things Conservatives Can Do (Or Not) To Improve The World

Conservatives in the United States and around the world tend to focus their policy-making on prohibitions and abolitions: from drugs, to abortion, to science, to the government itself, all they do is focused on trying to stop others.  The irony is that others don’t want to make conservatives do anything at all: in fact, nobody actually counts on them to do things, since they’re focused on not doing things.  Debates rage in societies about dozens of issues regarding the proper role of government, morality, and even science.  Often in these discussions, conservatives tend to proclaim that the other side shouldn’t do this or that, and then advocate for some sort of prohibition or other.  Given the repressive nature of this group of society, I thought it might do good to propose to them, briefly, solutions to the hot-button issues in a way they can understand (i.e., things they can avoid doing themselves).

  1. Against abortion? Don’t have one.  First of all, assuming conservatives are 50-50 male-female, half of them should have nothing to say about this issue.  Second, there is no such thing as anyone who is pro-abortion; there are just those who realize abortion does more harm when it is illegal than when it is legal, and those who don’t.  Pro-life is, as the late great George Carlin said, anti-woman.
  2. Don’t like homosexual marriage? Don’t marry one.  OK, so two guys three houses down the street live together an want to get married.  Does that in any way affect their neighbor’s relationship with his/her wife/husband?  If the answer is no, then you there’s nothing to fear from gay marriage.  If the answer is yes, then there’s a lot to gain from it!
  3. Don’t want universal public health care? Pay for your own.  If people don’t have to worry about going broke when they get sick, does that make them less free, or more?
  4. Think global warming is a hoax? Get out of the way and let the rest of us fix it.  The potential costs of not doing anything far outweigh the costs of doing something unnecessary or ineffective.  If we add to that the fact that it’s already happening—you don’t even need to bother with the science, just look at the news—getting out of the way and letting the rest of us do something is the least conservatives can do.
  5. Don’t believe in evolution?  Fine, just let the man give his biology class.  We don’t teach numerology along with math, alchemy with chemistry, homeopathy with physics, or holocaust denial with history.  If skinheads can sit through history class, then surely Christians can sit through biology.
  6.  Don’t like assisted suicide?  Then don’t do it.  Death can be a painful and humiliating experience, but it doesn’t have to be.  If we can choose to die, or to suffer miserably, drag our family with us, and then die anyway, how is that choice difficult at all?
  7. Don’t like migrants? Don’t hire them.  Pretty self-explanatory.
  8. Think drugs are bad? Don’t do them.  Same principle as abortion.  Besides, we know what will happen if we legalize: just look at Portugal.
  9. Don’t want stem cell research? Don’t use it.  There will be more for the rest of us and we’ll need less of point #6.
  10. Don’t like free speech?  Then shut up!  If you have ridiculous ideas, then you will be ridiculed.  If your ideas are not respectable, they will not be respected.

In short, all conservatives have to do is be people of congruence and integrity.  Nobody is going to make them marry a homosexual, do drugs, have an abortion, kill themselves, or anything that goes against what they believe… All the rest of us ask of them in return is that they don’t legislate their opinions onto our lives.  If they want to be backward superstitious bigots, then that’s fine!  When they give up sovereignty over their own bodies and minds, they hurt nobody but themselves.  Meanwhile, those of us who care about civilization and progress can move forward, and everybody wins.

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