Liberal Movements Brought Decades of Progress to America

By Severino, Bruce | The Charleston Gazette (Charleston, WV), October 31, 2012 | Go to article overview

Liberal Movements Brought Decades of Progress to America


Severino, Bruce, The Charleston Gazette (Charleston, WV)


The election of a new president for our country is at hand and the Republicans are again trying to make liberal Democrats into social pariahs when, in fact, the Republicans and the conservatives have ruined our country.

Since the Reagan administration and the conservatives have mostly taken over, liberals have been so cowed by the pummeling they've taken from the right that they've tried to shed their own identity, calling themselves everything but liberal and hoping to pass conservative muster by presenting themselves as hyper-religious and lifelong lovers of rifles and handguns.

I am not a progressive or any other label the liberals have given themselves to appease the Republican conservatives who have managed to turn "liberal" into a bad word. I am a true, bleeding-heart liberal. I have been a defender of social justice all of my adult life.

This country has been ravaged by Republican politics, corruption and unbelievable hubris. I am worried that the Republicans will take the White House because of fear-mongering and outright lies and a Supreme Court decision that allowed unlimited money to campaigns from corporations, after defining them as persons. Unbelievable!

Just think about this for a minute. Without the contribution of liberals, from some of our outstanding presidents to the protesters and organizers who founded the civil-rights movement, the ecology movement, the food and drug movement, the women's movement, the gay and lesbian movement, and the AIDS movement, would you want to live in the United States? I would not.

Our actions ended the horrifying Vietnam War and the disastrous war in Iraq, and our president has presented an exit plan for the war in Afghanistan.

We, as liberals, should be proud that we have made our country what it is today.

For instance, there would be absolutely no chance that a Barack Obama or a Hillary Clinton or even a Sarah Palin could make a credible run for the highest offices in the land. Conservatives would never have allowed it.

Remember, the liberals gave us Social Security and unemployment insurance. Most conservatives despised the very idea of this assistance to struggling Americans. Republicans hated Social Security, but most were afraid to give full voice to their opposition in public at the height of the Depression. An outrageous position.

Liberals gave us Medicare and Medicaid. My mom is on Medicare. How many of your moms and dads or your loved ones are benefiting from these programs?

Ronald Reagan saw Medicare as the advance wave of socialism. …

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