Guest post by Rebecca Gross Barton
The word “liberal” is very subtly being replaced by the word “progressive” in the media.
MSNBC is now the “new” MSNBC.
The phrase “populist progressive movement” is being used quite frequently – it’s being heard in all the best places.
I have mixed feelings about this. Primarily, I am elated to think that we may be looking at a time in our political history that promises to offer great social change – programs and services that will benefit every segment of our society. The last time we seemed to come together like this was in the 60’s – and we did some very good things.
On the other hand, I am not a fan of pretense – and I find this push to call everyone who believes in equality for all a “progressive” slightly offensive and condescending. There’s a sense of urgency in the air – strike fast and hard with populist/progressive/liberal/left-wing (whatever…) policies while the public is receptive to such change. The right has been weakened by their own antics. Use whatever rhetoric works, but “get her done” as we say in the south.
The eternal quest of the right-wing or conservative mind is to keep a tight lid on the thoughts of dangerous liberal thinkers, to resist change and to hold fast to the status quo. What we have is good – no changes – Please!
The eternal quest of the liberal mind is to seek change and knowledge that will facilitate the greater good. This is probably the most important distinction between the two schools of thought.
Too bad we can’t have a balance…..
I am a liberal. I like the word, despite the very successful, years-long campaign against its use.
Sometimes I even re-read the definition of this word and I smile.