The 4th of July
Richard J. Garfunkel
The key to the American Revolution is the second paragraph in the Declaration of Independence, and it states, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.” This phrase is not limited to whites or to men or to just Christians, or the wealthy. That is the rub between the so-called moral equivalency of the conservatives and the liberals. This was a “LIBERAL” document, not a conservative one. This language meant all of humankind, the rich and the poor, and for sure, believers and non-believers in G-d. It didn’t delineate race or religion. The collective of men, most assuredly meant women also. Freedom is not owned by some who can afford it. The desire for liberty and the “pursuit of happiness” is not limited to one class, race or religion. Eventually the right-wing revisionist will understand how this American Revolution came about and what it stood for.
If one actually believed that both parties are morally equivalent and both equally deserve the blame for American problems, think again! The GOP Conservatives and their Dixiecrat allies have been opposed to every advance in our long history. Many called it the progressive evolution of our society, but the small government acolytes seem to think that word progressive is a euphemism for left-wing socialism. As a long-time student of history, political person, and writer and lecturer on mid-20th Century history, it is not a stretch to see what side both parties fall. The right-wing has opposed: the following
The Bill of Rights, Anti-trust laws- Sherman and Clayton Acts Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid Labor unions and their right to collectively bargain- the Wagner Act Wages and Hours Law Child Labor laws and regulation- Triangle Shirtwaist and other disasters The Minimum wage Civil Rights- Integration- anti-lynching laws The Security Laws of 1933, 4, and 1940, affirmative action Pure Food and Drug laws Almost all environmental regulation on clear water and air Women’s Rights, sexual choice The right of choice Birth control access and information Equal pay for equal rights The Establishment Clause- separation of church and state Gun control Graduated Income Tax- taxes in general Inheritance Taxes Federal housing- urban renewal Public education Aid to Great Britain before WWII
What have they supported?
Restrictive Immigration: Chinese Exclusion Act 1882, National Origins Immigration Act of 1924 Property rights over individual rights Censorship Monopoly, trusts, Inter-locking directorships Unrestricted gun ownership Flat-taxes, sale’s taxes, State’s Rights Public funding for private schools Red-lining Segregation, White Citizen’s Councils, the KKK Privatization of services Union-busting Off shore banking shelters The market place cures all ills The Oil Depletion allowance Private schools
In other words, what in hell have the right-wing ever supported that was in the public’s interest?