Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Conservative -- In Moderation

Yesterday on RepublicanRedefined, TChristopher had a piece on abortion I thought was an interesting read. "Pro-Life vs. Pro-Choice: A Conservative Justification for a Third Option". The whole thing is worth a look, but this is the line that resonated with me:

Is being conservative about the process of decision making – in the political sense or in the practice of our day-to-day lives – or is it about a laundry list of talking points that “conservatives” are supposed to remain loyal to?

His basic point is that the pro-life stance is based on religion, and that conservatives might want to consider how their stance meshes with the First Amendment when it comes to understanding the other side. I think the same idea can be applied to many of the conservative talking points. Doing so may, in fact, stop driving moderates away from conservatism.

I've already written that I'm not comfortable labeling myself a conservative, and his post gets right to the root cause. I'm not going to pass any conservative litmus test. I'm not loyal to any "laundry list" of talking points. And while I'm 100% opposed to the direction we're being taken, I find some conservatives (politicians, pundits, and citizens) off-putting for exactly this reason.

I hope that there's room for varied opinion within conservative ranks (since that's where I seem to find myself), but I'm not always convinced that's the case. The kind of consideration TChristopher is calling for might be the best thing for conservatives if they want to hold the votes of independents like myself.

1 comment:

Republican Redefined said...

Thanks for the link. I share your sentiments regarding your everyday run of the mill "conservative." They tend to justify their conservative credentials by reciting said laundry list of issues and fail to generate an original thought - let alone understand the origins of conservatism.

I asked a good friend not to long ago - a fellow attorney actually - what he thought the origin of conservatism or conservative thought was - his response - Ronald Reagan. Now I am as big of a Reagan fan as there is out there, but I need a little more than that.

I certainly agree with you regarding the application of the same train of thought to other "conservative" issues. That's actually how the post came about. A commenter called me out on my Year End Bottom Ten Republicans post and I had to respond. I can't stand when my conservative brethren vote for candidates based on the core "conservative" positions without ever questioning how those politicians arrived at those "beliefs." Seems like a pretty scary world to me if all you have to do is pledge allegiance to a few talking points to get elected.

Many thanks for the link