A few weeks ago a friend I haven’t seen much in the last 15 years asked me when I became a liberal. He was basing this on my posts on Facebook, which are a lot different that a few years ago and reflect values which are not ones I held back in the 90s or before. I don’t know if it’s simply a gradual change in outlook due to getting older. I only know that there has been a shift.
These labels, “liberal,” “conservative,” and so forth, are highly emotionally charged and mean many different things to different people. Just looking up the word liberal brings up several definitions. Connotation splits from denotation and can develop a life of its own. Whereas “liberal” meant licentiousness at one point, it generally applies to philosophical or political points of view. Given a word with such a broad history of meanings, you kinda have to go with the ones that jump out at you. I’m not sure what dictionary this came from. I grabbed it from a Google image search. It seems to express good qualities…qualities that I want to demonstrate.
I always want to be thinking for myself, doing my own research and analysis, and not simply parroting the latest from mainstream sources. I don’t always do that as well as I should and I have people in my life who will bring things to my attention.
My orientation is towards liberty for the people. I view things with more compassion and sensitivity than I used to. I am definitely anti-war, anti-globalist, anti-imperialist, and anti-interventionist. So yeah, I’m a liberal. But I’m not a “please Mr. Government save me, protect me, and take care of me, because I cannot survive or even wipe my arse without your guidance.” liberal.