As I See It: Progressivism ... at what cost?
A recent letter writer challenged me to mention one positive thing that progressives have done for our country or society in every column so they won't be so negative by focusing on our problems.
I thought about that for a while and came to the conclusion that like most issues, unless the discussion includes a common understanding of what makes a progressive, things can deteriorate into a never-ending exchange of arguments that are parallel, but never quite about the same thing.
I'm not against progress. I'm not against change. I am decidedly against secular progressives and their brand of progressivism. I am also against change simply for change's sake and change that causes demonstrable harm to individuals and society.
Permit me to explain.
Too many American Progressives rely on relativism as their foundation for advertising, marketing and selling their ideas to you, me and all the other citizens of this country. Relativism wants us to believe there are no absolutes - no absolute truth, no absolute morality, that everything you believe can be ascribed only to you and that others may believe and act differently and that's all just fine.
Everyone is allowed to have his or her own "truth." And that truth should not - and cannot - be questioned by anyone else.
This leads to a second "ism," and that is individualism. If anyone can have his or her own truth then they may also rightly see themselves as an absolute entity ... not relying and not beholden to anyone else or anything else. This really gets to be a societal problem when someone believes his or her rights supersede the rights and privileges of anyone else. Who becomes the referee in cases like this?
Did I forget to mention the legal system and the courts are the BFFs of the progressives and any individuals who can get themselves classified as "protected?" While it took the courts many years and many decisions to bring about integration of the races in our culture and society, the same decisions the courts rendered to bring this about have been extended into the areas of human sexuality and beyond where their applicability was and is far more questionable. Additionally, when court decisions were applied to children and juveniles, public schools and public organizations were allowed to overrule parental rights in the favor of a child's individual rights.
It doesn't take a genius to recognize the lack of respect for any authority in many of our children and juveniles - not to mention many adults - today.
Which brings me to secularism - the most destructive "ism" of the bunch. Secularism and secular progressives pretty much deny the existence of anything beyond the physical world ... like religion, spirituality, real morality and so on.
Put that together with relativism and individualism, and you can blithely ignore any of the shortcomings of mankind and can excoriate anyone who would espouse limits on the behavior of individuals or groups.
Here are just a few of the neat things you can be in favor of if you are a secular progressive:
Self-identification: You can be male if you are female, or you can be female if you were born a male. Or you might even be one on even days and the other on odd days and no one has the right to question otherwise.
In rare cases, you might even be another race or Native American if it suits you. Additionally, you can get your state to set up a committee to come up with guidelines for all schools to follow to make a few of you very happy at the expense of many others.
Euthanasia: You can help Mom or Dad, Grandma or Grandpa, or anyone else you believe is suffering too much to put an end to it all because there's no moral reason for someone to live if we think they don't want to.
Abortion: Why do we have sexual intercourse if it occasionally results in pregnancy in spite of our best efforts to prevent that? It's good that we can just go to a private clinic and get that little problem taken care of and no one has to know - not even our parents - because that's a private matter.
And the list goes on. Isn't it really great what secular progressivism has done for us?
That's how I see it.