The 2016 race to the White House threw a spotlight on the American Liberal who has evolved into an insular and narrow-minded political species, more focused on supporting radical and controversial cultural experiments than serving as humanitarian watchdogs against government abuse of power.
Since most of the discussion and debate at the moment is focused on Donald Trump and his stunning upset over Hillary Clinton – which only seems «stunning» because the US media had long conditioned us to believe that a Clinton presidency was a done deal – I would like to talk about what for me is the most under-reported phenomenon of the 2016 US presidential election, which in fact has been a long time coming.
Perhaps the headline accompanying this article is slightly misleading. American Liberalism (and by extension, the Democratic Party) has not really passed away, per se, rather it has transmogrified into something completely strange, alien and, I believe, absolutely hideous. Many of the Liberals who make up the bulk of the Democratic Party constituency have abused the constitutional privilege of freedom at the expense of US liberty. Now we risk losing both.
Liberalism, which largely shapes the political ideology and outlook of the Democratic Party (much like «conservativism» is the ideological cornerstone of the Republican Party) was originally predicated on the idea of protecting liberty and promoting equality. Over time, however, and especially in the last eight years of the Obama administration, Liberals have become totally obsessed with cultural over strictly political affairs. They are mainly concerned with maximizing ‘freedom of choice’ for its increasingly hedonistic adherents. In other words, pursuit of happiness in the cultural realm is the ultimate goal, and to hell with consideration for what’s happening in the real world of politics.
In a nutshell, I believe that largely explains why the Democratic Party not only lost the presidential election, not to mention both houses of Congress, but is quickly losing its relevance as a political force. In other words, unless the Democrats clean up their house, and place raw political issues above cultural exploits and experimentation, the party is over for them.
Allow me to provide some examples. On the morning after Donald Trump was formally announced president-elect, news reports began airing scenes of Clinton supporters (who I must assume were also Obama supporters) shedding tears of sorrow that their candidate failed to win the White House. Later, while some Californians were issuing desperate calls to secede from the US, large-scale marches were being organized against a Trump presidency in major cities across the country. While it is certainly the democratic right of these individuals to express their indignation, why were these same individuals so quiet for the last 8 years while the Obama administration conducted its wars of aggression around the world?
Dear Liberals, I ask you (and admittedly, perhaps not at the most polite time), where were these hot tears of sorrow when hundreds of thousands of innocent people in the Middle East and Northern Africa were falling victim to Washington’s endless wars of aggression? Where was the outcry when the people of Libya, who once upon a time had the most advanced medical and education system in Africa, were crushed by a totally senseless attack by US, British and French forces to take out Muammar Gaddafi in 2014? Where were the nationwide marches against the illegal and unconstitutional attack on Syria, which has provoked a mass exodus of refugees into Europe and beyond? Your Democratic darling Hillary Clinton had a large hand in all of that. Where were the emotional marches against that humanitarian disaster that continues today?
Calling Bob Dylan
By comparison, please consider how Liberals from all walks of life raised up in protest against the Vietnam War. On December 19, 1964, the Student Peace Union helped coordinate the first nationwide protests against the Vietnam War that attracted thousands of demonstrators. In May, 1965, the so-called Vietnam Day Committee (VDC), a loose coalition of left-wing political, university and labor groups conducted a 35‑hour‑long anti-Vietnam War protest at the University of California, Berkeley, which attracted almost 40000 participants.
Nobody is condoning violence here, but it would be nice to see university students have even half the amount of passion for political issues that their academic antecedents demonstrated.
Meanwhile, can anybody name a single anti-war song on the hit charts today? That’s rather strange, isn’t it, especially when we consider that US military adventures, which began under the Bush administration with the absolutely unjustified Iraq War 13 years ago, continue today under the sheep’s clothing of the Obama administration with the destruction of Libya and the attempted destruction of Syria.
So exactly what have the Liberals been preoccupied with over the last 8 years of the Obama administration? Perhaps as a convenient way of distracting public scrutiny from what the US military was doing overseas, the Democrats in the Obama administration decided to toss out some highly controversial smoke grenades, such as allowing men who suddenly «identify» themselves as being female – «transgender» is the preferred nomenclature – to be legally permitted to use the ladies bathrooms, as well as locker rooms. Naturally, this insane proposal, which aims to protect an infinitesimal segment of the population with total disregard for the absolute majority of women, has, in the words of Time magazine, turned into «America’s latest civil rights fight».
Imagine that! As US soldiers are getting killed and wounded in senseless overseas battlefields that most Americans could not locate on a map, Liberals on the homefront are fighting over the right of some men to use the women’s bathrooms and changing rooms at the local Walmart. On top of that mountain of nuts, Liberals have also taken up cause with a number of other highly controversial, nationally divisive ideas, such as same-sex marriages, LGBT rights and the legalization of marijuana at the very worst of times.
Now, Democratic supporters of Hillary Clinton are out on the streets, incensed that a billionaire real estate tycoon threatens to end their eight-year flight from reality. But had the Liberals in the Democratic Party pursued something higher than simply challenging the moral sensibilities of the status quo with an endless array of cultural experiments, perhaps Donald Trump would not be where he is today.
In short, American Liberals, ignoring their past legacy of resistance and protest, have nobody to blame but themselves and their proven preference for ignoring matters of real political urgency in favor of hyper-individualist pursuits and pleasures. Now it’s up to Trump to undo the damage.