Thursday, January 14, 2010

Places Where Liberals Are Wrong

Though I make no secret of the way I vote, there are some places where the Left is in the wrong.


Israel is a Western-style democracy with no official religion (check the constitution, it's there) populated by the most persecuted minority in human history, who finally have a homeland to protect themselves from future genocides. Israel is absolutely morally superior to the theocratic oligarchies that perpetuate themselves and distract from domestic problems by creating a scapegoat in Israel. There isn't a moral equivalency between Israel and its Arab foes.

One of the great flaws in thinking is the "Moderator Fallacy." That is, marriage counselors often operate from the assumption that if a couple is having a disagreement, both must be at least to blame and the truth is somewhere in the middle. In reality, with most personal disagreements and disputes, usually one person is 80% to 100% responsible.

Israel is one of the great success stories in human history. They quite literally made the desert bloom. To be fair, Israel is not a perfect society by any means...the power over which non-secular authorities have powers in specific, limited spheres is shocking, for example, the way clerics have power over a social function like marriage. Likewise, Israel's Arab minority are often discriminated against and used for cheap labor. But these social problems do not legitimize the right of Israel to exist any more than the US's social problems delegitimize us.

Gun Control

Obviously the United States is a violent society, but the truth is, guns aren't the problem and removing guns won't cure the problem.

The problem with the United States is that we are a society of fear and anxiety. I am offended by violent crime as much as anyone else, and by terrorism and random shootings, but the idea we are living in an exaggerated state of danger that requires firearms or at least a pair of trusty Nunchaku constantly is just insane. Why do people feel the need to own or carry firearms? As someone that worked for the public High Schools for at least a year as a math instructor in what could be considered a lower socioeconomic area, I never was robbed or stabbed. And frankly, if nobody wants to stab a math teacher...things are probably pretty safe for everyone else! Americans - especially suburban white Americans - are just not aware of the reality of this experience.

I had something of an ephiphany when I understood the difference between conservative television figureheads Bill O'Reilly and Glen Beck. O'Reilly is the sort of person that conservatives respond to when they're in power: swaggering, domaneering, authoritarian. Beck is the sort of person conservatives are when outside of power: panicky, terrified, prone to overreaction and seeing conspiracies absolutely everywhere. No wonder there are guns everywhere: the right's gone into "Glen Beck mode."

The point is, this is a problem so deep in the American psyche that restricting or legislating guns just won't solve.

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