Left paved way for Trump

Benny Garbacz

So, how’d Donald Trump win?  I’m seeing people claim that it is the result of racists and misogynists wanting to preserve a white male-dominated America, but even as a Democrat liberal, I find these reasons laughable. If we liberals wish to discover why we will have a Trump presidency, we need only look into a mirror.

Liberalism is the freedom of individuals to express themselves and abide to morals which welcome a free and open exchange of ideas regardless of identity.  But, have the people who call themselves liberals practiced such principles?  Not all.  And that is the group of people who have stood out the most.

Take a look at a segment of “Real Time with Bill Maher” from 2014 in which Ben Affleck, Sam Harris and Maher discussed several topics which most liberals heavily agree on: equal opportunity for women in society, equal treatment of gays and standing up to racists.
Maher went on and said something quite key.  “These are liberal principles that liberals applaud for, but then when you say in the Muslim world this is what’s lacking, then they get upset.”  The point Maher is trying to make is that in these areas of influence, there is a heightened difficulty in being a minority.

Given the punishment for being gay or Jewish is a death sentence in much of the Middle East, there is no denying this. This should be an area in which we as liberals stand up and call out the bigotry committed.

An example of the type of liberal that has harmed our credibility is Affleck.  The way he responded to Maher and Harris says it all.

He did not resort to calmness nor facts to counter the point, but rather he became childishly angry and spouted, “That’s gross!  That’s racist!”  And he wouldn’t budge from his buzzword accusations claiming Maher and Harris were calling out an entire group of people.

But Maher continued to point out he was not calling out all Muslims, but simply implying that a discussion should be had because of the common pattern of discrimination to certain groups in the Muslim world. Affleck wouldn’t listen and ignored Maher and Harris without once considering their reasonings.

Affleck represents the left that has tarnished our image. It is a left that betrays the principles it stands for— a regressive left.  If a discussion cannot be had, how can we solve problems? This is the ugly head that has brandished itself our mascot, as many mainstream media outlets and celebrities have told some to shut up because of their race, gender or sexual orientation. How is this not bigotry? Giving a voice to one over the other only creates friction and brews the opportunity for real discriminatory notions to birth.

Ideas must be presented as equal across the board regardless of biology in order to obtain a truly equal society. Which, believe it or not, many Americans agree to. But we true, classic, liberals have stayed silent and let the regressives treat people like utter garbage and tell their opposition to shut up with identity politics.

The left thought itself infallible, and a movement to think of itself as perfect holds the greatest dangers of becoming the very thing it sought to destroy.  The left was a rise from the authoritarian right surrounding the Bush era.  It was a movement to purge our society of censors and bigots, and we’ve become the opposite side of the same coin.

A large demographic of the American population feels betrayed, feels even though they stand for equality their voices have been silenced.  They were sick of this.  Who could they turn to to let their voices be heard again? The system which allowed the regressives to flourish?  Or a system which, even though they had many grievances with it, would finally allow them to feel as though they could regain a voice?

The voting process has spoken for itself.

But, we liberals can gain the influence back next election.  We will need to purge ourselves of the identity politics which censor people and see all presentations of ideas be given a chance to be heard regardless of identity.  If the left is to survive and maintain influence, the regressives have to go.