Monday, August 11, 2014

This Liberal is Tired of the Hatred

This column originally appeared in The Sun Chronicle on Monday, August 11, 2014
By Bill Gouveia

            I’m a Liberal.  And I’m sick and tired of Liberals being blamed for things simply because of our political viewpoints or voting preferences.


            Everybody in America seems to need someone to blame for their problems these days.  Conservatives blame Liberals.  Liberals blame Conservatives.  Moderates blame the Tea Party.  The Tea Party blames Occupy Wall Street.


            Frankly, I’m sick and tired of all of it.  So many are caught up in the political game.  They worry only about scoring points and dominating the PR battle.  They must win at all costs, and have forgotten how to lose gracefully or more importantly compromise for the greater good.


            I wish this was only a national political problem, but unfortunately it is all too prevalent on state and local issues.  In Rehoboth, school supporters took care of their budget issue at the expense of the rest of the town while pretending they weren’t.  It’s the hypocrisy that bothers me the most.


            There are plenty of Liberals who behave badly and take ridiculous positions.  They need to stop.  But extremism is dangerous on both sides of the aisle.  I’m now going to call bull you-know-what on some of the ones that bother me the most.


            I’m sick and tired of hearing pious declarations from some fighting to prevent women from having access to affordable contraception, when in reality what they care about most is imposing their own beliefs and morals on others so they can feel good about themselves.


            I’m tired of those who claim religious persecution on the basis of little more than fact other religions are given the full protection of our laws, even if they are unpopular and foreign to us.


            I’m fed up with those who have to resort to personal remarks and politics because facts and logic have not proven to advance their causes.  This includes the ridiculous and stupid claims of “Birthers” and those claiming our President is a traitor and a foreigner.  Grow up.


            It is sickening to watch people oppose the spending of taxpayer money to house illegal immigrant children because “there are so many homeless and in need right here”, and then watch them oppose the spending of money to help those folks too.  Sorry, but it matters who you use to advance your selfish political agendas.


            I’ve had it with those who constantly rail against our political process, when in fact what they really want is for their party and candidates to be in control of it.  It’s funny how the voters are nothing but “mindless sheep” until and unless they agree with you.


            I can’t stand those “Professional Againsters”, or CAVE people as an old friend called them.  That’s short for “Citizens Against Virtually Everything”.  They never seem to have any answers of their own, other than putting down the solutions of others.


            It is so upsetting to watch hate and fear become the driving force in our campaigns and elections.  If you can make people afraid of something or someone, you can get them to oppose those same things.  And instead of the truth being the guiding force it should be, it becomes nothing more than an obstacle to be overcome.


            I know, I sound too much like those I am complaining about.  Maybe I have been perusing Facebook too much, reading posts from those who seek only to inflame others and incite unrest.  Or perhaps I’ve just spent too much time paying attention to the political side of people and not enough to the good others do.


            I’ve never minded strong opinions.  I love a good debate.  I have many close friends and relatives who have political philosophies in direct contradiction to my own, and are not shy about stating them.  I think that’s great.


            But I’m tired of the selfishness and hatred that has gripped so many in this rigid political climate.  I understand the automatic distrust of public officials, but I cannot excuse the personal hatred so many apparently need to spew in order to claim the alleged high ground.


            I’m a Liberal.  Maybe you’re a Conservative.  Let’s chat and disagree.  We can point out the fault in each other’s arguments.  But we don’t have to hate and ridicule each other to do it.


Bill Gouveia is a local columnist and longtime local official.  He can be emailed at and followed on Twitter at @Billinsidelook.

No comments: