6 Things Liberals Need to Change in 2016 to Engage Conservatives

Personally, liberalism is a philosophy that all humans deserve universal respect. In my own engagements with conservatives, I’ve been called close-minded, intolerant and intellectually condescending. Why is that the case? Riding on the high horse of social justice and stabbing exploitation in the gut, liberals just doesn’t ring a bell for many.

1. A matter of education

It should make common sense that people don’t like being called stupid. The statistics portrays that liberals are in the demographic that have completed college and hold the higher income jobs. Statistics give us a face of where reality lies but it cannot be used to say “Hey, we’re just better than you”. Statistics can be wrongly applied and I’ve seen this case happen so many times. Intelligence is indifferent to your political leanings. To disregard those you see as less, it fails to recognize that in a democracy, not only the well educated and wealthy have a voice.

2. Hypocrisy is not red or blue

We’re hypocrites. As progressives, we sometimes have a reach so high that we alienate not just conservatives, but moderates as well. If you disagree, have you done the following?

  • Take sponge baths because save water.
  • Buy only ethically sourced, organic ingredients from local businesses
  • If you’re a business owner, pay $15/hr for that high school student to flip burgers.
  • Own a fully electric vehicle/stop driving
  • Stop buying cosmetics, meat, anything at Walmart, etc.
  • Curbstomp your carbon footprint

3. Liberal exceptionalism

If you watch South Park, you know about Kyle’s speeches. Whenever there is a conflict, Kyle is the outspoken, daring hero that makes speeches about what’s wrong with society. Except on the show, he’s seen as the annoying, whiny liberal who is more often than not shut down. When I read Facebook and Twitter feeds, there are a lot of Kyles’ on there. People who make them self feel important and turn to make things that are ultimately unimportant into fierce political debates. When it comes down to people just trying to live their lives, who does this benefit?

4. Stubbornness

When we expect conservatives to cede to our point of view, we become deaf to the very notion that we could be wrong. It happens. When arguing is about pride and not the truth, the conservation is moot. We also forget that things aren’t black and white, there is a whole spectrum of gray in the middle.

5. Naivety

Sometimes, I do feel like the liberal agenda is just infeasible. I also believe that we’re responsible for trying. The conservatives that don’t want to impeach Obama because he’s a Muslim are often just working class, middle class Americans. While they would love to see the rainbows and butterflies vision we have, some are whole-heartedly content with just paying their taxes and ensuring stability for themselves and children. Is this that bad?

6. Listening

If you’re ever seen Donald Trump’s crowd, you don’t see the most rational and wholesome people. Liberalism is, in parts, to blame. With the decline of conservatism, we often forget to value their input in this machine we can democracy. We ignore the voice of a large part of our population — the gunslingers and the people that are still sour from the passing of Obamacare. In turn, they turn to even more radical demagogues such as Trump. If the election cycles were yin and yang, the Republicans have fallen way out of balance. In this cycle, we lost the prescence of the moderate conservatives who balance the scale.

It’s to say that we can do better. To practice respect in the wake of the radicalism is to tame the frenzy. The Republicans needs to have its voice heard and not to the tune of today’s demagogues.