Tuesday, December 20, 2016

You might be a Liberal!

Yes, you read the title correctly:  you might actually be a Liberal.  You just don't know it.  And you don't know it because the political right-wing has been filling your head with crap for so long that you might not even know what "liberal" really means these days - or how liberals affect your lives on a daily basis.

Do you like the idea that women have the right to vote?  Liberals brought us the 19th Amendment, so if you're a woman and you like casting a ballot right along with men, then you are supporting a liberal idea.

Let's talk about work for a little bit, shall we?  Are you glad employers can't force you into working 60-75 hours a week like they used to be able to do?  Really?  Well, you can thank liberals for the 40-hour work week AND overtime!  Yeppers ... any time you make more money because you worked past that 40 hours a week, you might want to find a liberal and buy him a cup of coffee.  Oh, and have you ever been hurt on the job?  Liberals gave us the Workers Compensation Act!  And for veterans, liberals came out with the G.I. Bill of Rights.  I know three veterans right now who are using that to pay for higher education.  I wonder if they appreciate liberals as they are attending classes.  I doubt it; they are all right-wing conservatives who appear to love the benefits, but hate those who made the benefits possible.

Speaking of education!  Thousands and thousands of Americans (me included) made use of Pell Grants and Guaranteed Student Loans to get our college degrees.  Yep ... those pesky liberals wanted to make it possible for all Americans to continue their education past high school.  And for the little guys, liberals used real data and learned that the earlier children can be a part of an organized educational setting, the better chances of academic success they will have later.  So ... they gave us Operation Head Start.

Do you like the fact that you have clean, safe water to drink?  Then thank liberals for the Clean Water Act.  Of course, if you are in Flint, MI then you are probably still forced to drink bottled water because the conservatives running that city haven't made the repairs or rebuilds needed to bring clean water to all residents.  And the conservative-run Congress refused to appropriate any money for the repairs/rebuild.  Meanwhile, children in Flint are being monitored for - and treated for - lead poisoning.

If you're a senior like I am, you might just appreciate Social Security and Medicare!  I know I do!  I paid into it and now it's time to get some of it back.  Liberals gave us both.  Social Security lifted millions of older people out of poverty ... and it still does.  And without Medicare, I suspect there would be a health care crisis worse than any we've seen to date.  Thank you, liberals, for understanding the "promote the general welfare" clause of the Preamble to the U.S. Constitution!  Welfare = well being.  Promote the well-being of the citizenry.

Liberals gave us the Peace Corps.  Our people go to developing/third world countries to teach them how to farm and educate and develop their economies.  Imagine that ... we send people to help those countries instead of bombing the crap out of them!  What a concept!

Liberals gave us desegregation and the Civil Rights Act of 1964.  For liberals, it boils down to equality and that which is promised in the 14th Amendment:  equal protection of the laws.  There are no exceptions.  Equal protection of the laws ... period.  

Voting Rights Act of 1965.  Do you like the idea that every qualified person in this country should have easy access to the ballot box?  You do?  Well, then, you need to know that liberals gave us that law.  

How about a balanced federal budget?  Conservatives talk a big game, but the last time since 1970 that we had a balanced federal budget was when Bill Clinton was President and the liberals controlled Congress.  The U.S. government suffered budget deficits every year from 1970 through 1997. Democrat Bill Clinton was president in 1998, when the government finally recorded a surplus. There also were budget surpluses in 1999, 2000 and in 2001. 2001 was the last year the Clinton administration proposed the budget.  Next came conservatives who nailed us with a budget deficit once again.

Health care reform ... there's Obamacare!  Yes, about 20 million people with health insurance, most of whom didn't have it before because of pre-existing conditions or lack of money to pay the premiums.  Actually, this was a conservative plan that liberals turned into a reality.  And now, conservatives want to dump it all and start all over instead of simply fixing what needs to be fixed ... and who gives a hoot about the Americans who will lose that health safety net! 

Listen ... you probably support much of the above.  You just didn't know liberals gave it to you - and that conservatives fought all of it tooth and nail.  The list is much longer than the items discussed in this piece ... all liberal ideas brought to you by people who understand that equality and general well-being of the citizenry are essential to our country.

I am proud to be a liberal.