Why say liberal with a sneer?

servile artsThe root meaning of liberal from Latin “liber” is “free.” It is related to liberty, liberation and learning.

Many founding fathers were liberals; Madison and Jefferson rejected monarchy; they envisioned a government for a free people with liberty and justice for all.

Some contrast liberal with conservative, but this isn’t right. Here is a correct concept:

  • liberal … authoritarian
  • progressive …  conservative

Liberals are open minded, tolerant of others’ views. Authoritarians believe in unquestioning obedience to a ruler, perhaps a dictator. Progressives favor change for the better while conservatives fear and resist change. Many said to be conservative aren’t conservative at all–they seek extreme, radical change. False conservatives who argue for small government, no government, or seek to disrupt government can be called anarchists.

American values are liberal values:

  • Democracy is a liberal concept.
  • To be liberal is to be generous rather than grudging, cheap, tight-fisted.
  • Our best colleges are Liberal Arts colleges.
  • We value liberal education–free inquiry, thinking for one’s self.
  • The Romans contrasted Liberal Arts, suitable for free people, with Servile Arts, suitable for slaves.
  • In our literature positive characters are almost always liberals.
  • Americans celebrate free speech, religious freedom, and a free press which liberals guaranteed with The First Amendment.
  • America has been a melting-pot where those of diverse background have found a welcoming, liberal society here to call home.
  • Liberals favor social justice, freedom from fear of poverty or disease.
  • Liberals oppose social ills such as child labor.
  • Because of liberals we have weekends.

Those who sneer at liberals must be uneducated, opposed to free thinking, tolerance, and learning. What sort of society, what sort of government do they favor?







About whungerford

* Contributor at NewNY23rd.com where we discuss the politics, economics, and events of the New New York 23rd Congressional District (Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Chemung, (Eastern) Ontario, Schuyler, Seneca, Steuben,Tioga, Tompkins, and Yates Counties) Please visit and comment on whatever strikes your fancy.
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23 Responses to Why say liberal with a sneer?

  1. Anne says:

    Another antonym for “progressive” is “regressive,” and that’s usually the one I think of first. I also have to wonder when and how education became identified with elitism. I’d think everyone would want to become educated, and that everyone would understand the value of–and seek out–continuing or life-long education. (I feel as though stupid became the new cool back during the Reagan years, but if anyone has other thoughts about that, I’d love to hear them.)

    Liked by 3 people

  2. josephurban says:

    Good points. America is, at heart, a liberal country. In the last 7 presidential elections, in which policies were debated, guess who won? Well, the liberal candidate got more votes in 6 of the last 7 presidential elections. It is only the oddity of the Electoral College that has prevented liberals from “running the table”. People want liberal policies. Gerrymandering and fake news gives us conservatives or Trump.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Sue Heavenrich says:

    great post – I wish people really understood the words they fling as insults.


  4. Rynstone says:

    Classic Liberalism is good. A Classic Liberal wants the Liberties and freedoms that our Creator has given us and the US Constitution is tasked with protecting. We should be adhering to tehg US Constitution and State Constitutions followed and less laws that do nothing more than try to control us or legislate good behavior or socially acceptable behavior.

    Progressive Liberalism is bad. Progressive Liberalism gives us bigger government and increased government spending with more big government spending. Unfortunately too many Republicans have bought into the Progressive big government and big government spending ideas.

    I have friends who are progressive liberals. They want the Government taking from the wealthy and providing more government run programs for the general population.


  5. whungerford says:

    The absence of government is anarchy, which is not usually seen as desirable.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. josephurban says:

    Ryn.The issues are more complex than labels can describe.

    If your simplification is correct, why do conservatives demand government interference in a family’s right to decide how many children they want? Isn’t the control of the state over a woman’s body the ultimate “big government” interference? And aren’t the anti-recreational drug laws, championed by conservatives, an example of government legislating “good” behavior?

    Regarding government spending. It all depends on spending for “what”. Most liberals I know would welcome a massive reduction in government spending on the military. And a reduction or elimination of tax breaks to religious institutions, charter schools, etc. Spending is one area where it depends on the details of what the money will be spent on.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. whungerford says:

    If big government is evil, so is small government. Both ideas are wrong. Government can be good or bad–it is good if it promotes the general welfare and bad if it promotes the interests of the wealthy.


  8. Rynstone says:

    Wungerford, I never advocated for the absence of government.

    Joesph, Conservatives do not presume to tell families haw many children to have. They do not want to have control over women’s bodies. I am presuming that you are speaking about Abortion as a method of controlling family & population size. How can government protect both a woman’s ability to terminate a baby and also protect the an unborn baby girl (woman) ?

    Using abortion as a means of family size and population control is not moral and should be considered murder. The taking of another human beings life.

    Google Philly Abortion provider Kermit Gosnell
    If we as a society continue to go down teh road of terminating life where does it end.

    Where does awoman’s “right” to end life end? 1st trimester abortion, 2nd trimester abortion, late term abortion, partial birth abortion, snuffing out the life of a 2 week old baby, a 3 month old baby …where does it end? Isn’t life supposed to be protected ?

    Perhaps to prevent over-population the minute a person becomes disabled or retired and is no-longer productive in the working environment and paying taxes perhaps their life should be terminated. No need for Social Security then.

    Wungerford, many Conservatives, including myself, want Constitutionally limited Government.


  9. josephurban says:

    Ryn. Like so many folks who oppose a woman’s right to choose, you EVADE the issue. Either the government can tell a woman she MUST have a baby or it can’t. Which is it? As an example, Hitler DEMANDED that the German women make babies for the fatherland. And chairman Mao DEMANDED that women have no more than one baby to control the runaway population growth. In both instances the “state” demanded control over a woman’s body.
    Liberals oppose that. Evidently conservatives agree that the state should have the ultimate control over whether or not a woman gives birth. No amount of obfuscation changes that basic principle. Either the government controls a woman’s body when it comes to reproduction or she does.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Rynstone says:

    The Government cannot tell a woman to conceive a child. However if a woman chooses to conceive a child she should not be able to murder that child. Neither of these is imposing is infringing on the woman’s choice to conceive a child. However, once she has made the choice to conceive that child she should not have the right to murder that child.

    And the Government certainly should not be funding the largest abortion provider in the nation or any other abortion providers thru medicaid.
    Unless the baby was conceived by rape or is known to have life threatening disabilities the woman should carry thru to birth. There are many families looking to adopt that end up going top Russia, Africa or other nations. This encourages human trafficking and child abductions in 3rd world countries and eastern block countries.

    I know several women who have a hard time dealing with the fact that they had an abortion for no other reason than not to have a baby. They deeply regret that decision now and know what they did was morally and humanely wrong.

    I have never found in the Constitution where women have the “Righ”t to have an abortion.

    The woman who was used (Norma McCorvey) to push Roe vs Wade thru the Supreme Court has dedicated her life to overthrowing Roe vs Wade.

    Please take the time to investigate this.

    I think it is safe to say that we are all glad our mother’s did not make the choice to terminate our lives.

    I think we are seeing a rise in people who are opposed to baby killing. Killing the most innocent and vulnerable is just not a humane or moral thing to do.

    I find it interesting that Progressive Liberals will fight to save convicted murders but applaud and support the killing of innocent babies. I know a woman has never shown you an ultrasound picture of her fetus but has proudly shown you an ultrasound picture of her baby taken while still in the womb.


  11. whungerford says:

    I don’t believe conservatives agree that the state should control whether or not a woman gives birth. Faux-conservatives and Republicans perhaps.


  12. whungerford says:

    Conservatives oppose rapid change. They would go slow on making government smaller just as they would go slow on making it larger. Small government, an anti-government sentiment, isn’t a conservative view. Do faux-conservatives favor a smaller military? I think not.


  13. josephurban says:

    Ryn. Murdering a child is illegal. Basic biology. An embryo is not a child. A fetus is not a child.

    But here is an interesting point you make. You claim that any pregnancy is a “child”. Yet you are okay with a woman KILLING A “CHILD” if that pregnancy is the result of rape. So, the existence of a “child” depends on WHO the father is? The “child” of a rapists is less than human?

    Also, you seem to favor “infanticide ” for a “child” if that “child” has a life threatening disability? So, a “child” with a certain type of disability can be MURDERED, by your definition.
    You seem to hold some rather contradictory views .

    Regarding the Constitution and whether a woman’s right to her own body is in that document. There are MANY rights not listed in the Constitution. I suggest you check out the 9th and 10th amendments. Here, I will save you time:

    The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people

    The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people


  14. Rynstone says:

    That’s right Joe (aka The Pro-Baby Killer) abortion should be a state issue not a Federal Government issue.

    I only brought up those few instances of abortion to give the pro-abortion people something to win on. Personally I am against all abortion.

    The Federal government should operate like a Libertarian
    The State Government should operate like fiscally responsible Conservatives and Classic Liberals, not pretend Republicans (RINOs)
    The County Government should act like fiscally responsible Democrats (not DINOs) or Republicans
    The Local government should operate like Democrats


  15. Anne says:

    Hey Gary–don’t like abortion? Don’t have one. And anyone who is never going to need to access a particular medical service doesn’t get a vote.


  16. josephurban says:

    Ryn. I see that you are not able to respond without calling names. So be it. I will not do likewise. I don’t need to.

    So, if I understand your position. You think that any abortion should be treated as a murder? So, let’s say a mother with 4 young children uses birth control and it fails. She becomes pregnant. She and her husband do not want another child for whatever reason. She , with the advice and consent of her doctor, decides to have an abortion.

    Be specific. What should her punishment be? What should the punishment be for her husband who was part of the conspiracy (collusion)? What should be the punishment for her doctor? I am curious as to how those who oppose a woman’s right to choose would punish this crime.


  17. Rynstone says:

    Joe, I did not call you a name. I said you were pro baby killing. You stated this yourself.
    The pregnant woman could make the decision to carry teh baby and put the baby up for adoption

    I cannot tell you what the punishment for abortion should be because abortion is not against the law. What should teh punishment be for my 18 year old daughter who while traveling back to school has an accident and collides with another car that has a pregnant woman in it. What should the punishment be if the mother and baby are killed? What if just teh baby is killed?

    Hey Anne- I don’t like abortions and my daughters would never consider getting one. What irks them is that the American taxpayer is funding many abortions across the country.

    Stop all federal funding of Planned Parent Hood. We have Obamacare and no longer need Planned Parenthood.
    If a woman wants to have an abortion that is between her and her God. The taxpayers should not be funding it.

    Have you ever studied Planed Parent Hoods Founder Margaret Sangor?


  18. josephurban says:

    Ryn. I never stated I was pro-baby killing. You are incorrect about that. You are the one who equates the termination of an embryo or fetus with killing a baby.

    If your daughter was involved in an accident and killed someone it would depend. Was your daughter at fault? if so, then vehicular homicide would probably be the appropriate charge. If she was not at fault, then no charge, since she dd nothing wrong.

    I answered your questions, now how about mine? You say you are equating abortion with the killing of babies. So, be reasonable. If you could make abortion illegal, then what would be the appropriate punishments? For the woman. her husband or boyfriend. The doctor or medical personnel?

    Regarding Planned Parenthood. Don;t you understand that times have changed? Why does it matter what Margaret Sanger believed? Do you think the people who run PP have the same beliefs as Sanger? PP is the primary care provider for millions of poor women. They receive absolutely no federal funding for abortions and have not for years. If you support FREE and total health care for all women they would not need to go to PP for basic cancer screenings, birth control, etc.


  19. Anne says:

    Gary, get your shit straight. No taxpayer monies go to PP to pay for abortion services.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Rynstone says:

    Anne you are a class act !
    No Planned Parenthood does not publicly use federal funding to fund abortions. That money comes from “private donors”.
    You don’t think they use the old two-card Monty game or the classic shell game to shuffle money around. C’mon… I just may have a bridge to sell you.

    Now a days they call it creative accounting or progressive bookkeeping.

    There should be no federal money going to Planned Parent Hood because of the Affordable Care Act commonly known as Obamacare .

    Obamacare is such a success that we should no longer need planned parent hood.


  21. Rynstone says:

    Google some of the transcripts of the Kermit Gosnell trial.


    Woman and baby killed in a botched abortion

    Only a truly sick & messed up culture would endorse, encourage and support abortion aka baby killing and infanticide.


  22. josephurban says:

    Ryn. Still have not answered my question. If you believe abortion is murder then answer this simple question.
    What should be the punishment for the woman? For the doctor or other health care provider? For the boyfriend or husband if they cons=cur in the decision and help facilitate the “murder” ? Time to put up, don’t you think?
    You don’t seem to have the ability to tell us what the appropriate punishment should be? (Sound a LOT like Tom Reed…evasive when it comes to details).

    Liked by 1 person

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