Understanding The Many Levels and Layers of Today’s Conservatism
I love politics. I hate division. Yet nothing seems to create more division than politics except for religion.
Lately, I have been thinking of the conservative friends and acquaintances I miss because Donald J. Trump came to town with his divisive politics straight out of the Barry Goldwater playbook thanks to Roger Stone. Many of us have disassociated ourselves from loved ones, friends, co-workers, classmates, and people in our social group because of Donald Trump.
Trump is one man that can’t leave the White House fast enough for me. Lord, I don’t know what I’ll do if he wins in 2020. I’m trying not to even think about it.
Conservatism has never been so vilified in my lifetime. I realize people support the GOP for various reasons.
Some people in the GOP to anything that resembles communism, socialism, or other economic/governance models that include the government controlling everything. There are lots of examples of what that looks like and no one wants that. That’s clearly understandable. No economy is perfect, but many Republicans don’t want to go to some new thing that takes their stuff they worked for away. I don’t blame them either. No one sane wants that.
Some conservatives are descendants of loved ones who survived the Great Depression. They are beneficiaries of the New Deal and they are fine.
Some conservatives are Evangelicals and their alleged religious beliefs mostly align with the GOP, at least they used to. These people support things like school prayer, the immersion of church and state, social conservatism (not helping people basically).
Some conservatives are pure capitalists and they love making money. They love fantasies of pulling yourself up by the bootstraps and the American dream. They don’t want anything to impede their ability to make money. How that happens is usually by hook or by crook which these folks often forget to mention. Rarely today is there a business with an honest business model — besides Chick-Fil-A or Hobby Lobby, maybe.
Some conservatives are covert and overt racists. This party hides, harbors, grooms, grows and tolerates racists. They are welcomed and lumped in with all the other conservatives who profess they aren’t racist. I guess some conservatives condone this behavior in their ranks. Some of these conservatives are violent and are associated with known hate groups.
Some conservatives believe in the general principles of conservatism like a small government, low incomes (for poor folks that is), low corporate taxes and trickle down, limited government, low spending, and a balanced budget while opposing same-sex marriage, and abortion. These same conservatives are also pro-death penalty (they care about baby lives only) and are anti-social programs which help to take care of the babies they toss into the foster care system that are carried to full term and not aborted. But anyway!
Some conservatives just love Trump’s nasty attitude and his fake bravado. They love he’s disrespectful to women and people of color, as the people Trump surrounds himself with because it resembles their own ways of dealing with people on a daily basis. They love his mob boss like behavior and how he runs his government like he ran his business on the streets of New York City.
Some conservatives are covert perverts. They love the fact a rich, powerful man brags about grabbing and buying pussy, having affairs, etc. The president’s behavior isn’t just reprehensible. Apparently, it’s the status quo.
Some conservatives like the party because it’s a party of White men and a representation of White Supremacy. They appreciate the flexing and chest beating, politicians standing up for their perceived disadvantages and slights — some real and some are not.
Some conservatives are psychopaths, sociopaths and narcissist (but for the record, so are some liberals). They lie, cheat, steal, gas light, emotionally abuse, betray an ego stroke, and start all over again. There are some people with addictive personalities who are drawn to these dangerous people and those who are willing vessels for the life suckers. They never realize it.
Some conservatives (non-White immigrants) come from countries where the communism and socialism were the ways of the land. Freedom means everything to them and life in America including our horrible leadership is better than the leadership the fled. As long as America doesn’t change, they are loyal to the GOP until the end. They have no issues with racism because it’s practiced in their homeland.
Some conservatives are new converts. They love Donald Trump. They believe he will make the rich and do wonderful things for us. Who am I to kill someone’s dream?
Some conservatives are a combo of some or all these characteristics. They are a mixed bag, so it’s best not to judge them until you’ve interacted with them. Some of the nicest people I’ve met were conservative.
There are so many different types of conservatives. So many different reasons conservatives pledge their undying loyalty to the GOP. I just try to learn why they choose the party. Some of these folks are not stable (you can tell how angry they are and high and mighty when they engage), and you can’t engage with them for your own mental health. They enjoy being angry and they love getting under your skin.
But others are afraid to share their ideas and feelings for fear of condemnation. Medium is a very liberal place and doesn’t really provide an outlet for conservative ideas for people who know how to speak in normal tones without being condescending or disrespectful.
That’s another thing that separates some conservatives from some liberals. The way we speak to and about one another usually determines whether or not we get to each express our individual ideas and views.
I don’t agree with everything conservative, nor do I agree with everything liberal. I believe in equality, which is something conservatives don’t agree with based on the party’s core values. I respect their right to affiliate with the party that embodies their values. As a taxpayer, they have the right to ask leaders to support the values they hold true and hopefully they’ll ask their leaders to uphold the Constitution. As a taxpayer, I also have the right to ask the leaders I endorse to support the values I hold true.
Understanding the various populations under the umbrella of conservatism is a little difficult. It takes time to get it. I realize I write about a lot of things that conflict with their values, but at least I’ve taken the time to get to know their values and the things they believe in. It’s scary but I will continue to talk to people who are interested in sharing ideas. While we may hardly agree on much, at least we could politely agree to disagree. Conservatives shouldn’t have the right and freedom to take people out or keep people down. That’s not what I believe in. We need to learn to share the earth, share resources and take care of one another.