Wednesday, November 12, 2008
It started as a comment
I've been having a lively discussion with a blogger this week over ideology. He's a proud gay
republican independant, and me, well we all know how flamingly liberal I am. I understand him well because I used to parrot the same tired conservative lines. Capitalism is what made us great, why should I pay more taxes while others benefit from welfare, and that entrepreneurs are what make us as a country "richer" (that trickle down nonsense). I used to think "welfare" was about as dirty a word as you could utter. And then, to use his line, I grew up. Or rather I met people who were actually at a disadvantage in this system. The unemployable for one reason or another (as simple a thing as a facial tick will cause employment difficulties). The punishing of unwed mothers in our society in particular made me change my mind. Welfare is not a bad word, it's a leveling of the playing field. I have never relied on government assistance (except for the white man's welfare - bankruptcy) because I've always pounded the pavement and found ways to make ends meet. It's easier being childless I must admit. But for me to assume that everyone is as able as I am to do this is fallatious reasoning. Do black people start out at a disadvantage in society? Absolutely. That's why affirmative action programs are in place. Not because minorities are lazy, but because they have to run a longer and harder course to keep up with white men. Why do women still make less than men doing the same jobs? Because the system favors the white man. Basically it all boils down to this. Conservatives blame poor people for their own poverty. Do some abuse the system in order to work less? Sure, but we can't label all welfare recipients as lazy. (Though laziness is a huge part of human nature. All technology improvements are aimed at helping us make less effort. It seems hypocritical to demonize it.) I'm not going to tell you which blogger, he can out himself if he wishes in the comments.