I think what turns me off Conservatism/Republicanism in general, and Libertarianism in particular, is the promulgation of the idea that giving people a hand is somehow un-American.
I’m all for the idea of a decent work ethic and making sacrifices for the sake of building yourself a better life, but as a white, cis-identified male that’s a particularly easy position to take. It’s also disingenuous, because it ignores the very real realities of race, class, gender and (sometimes) luck that can have far more effect on a person’s success than willpower or bootstrap determination.
So when the Ron Pauls or Glenn Becks stand up and say or imply that giving people food or money or health care when they’re hurting is in any way a bad idea … I can only hear that as people who’ve been lucky by circumstance blindly refusing to share what they feel is somehow MORE theirs. If Glenn Beck lost his job and couldn’t pay his mortgage and lost his home, refusing him access to shelter or food (to put it simply, to HELP) would be undeniably heartless.
So what bothers me is that many Conservatives seem to feel that heartlessness is an essential American quality, and one worth preserving.
I think we, both as a country and as a species, are capable of better than that.
Me, in one of my ashamed-to-be-a-white-American moments
not long after this post, Glenn Beck *did* lose his job. hahaha.