Conservatives do care about poverty. We have a whole color-coded portfolio of good ideas for how to tackle it. But if the public is disinclined to believe this, that may sometimes be our own fault.
Conservatives love freedom, personal responsibility and spirited individualism. Those are wonderful (and very American) values that we are right to cherish. But we could perhaps be more discerning at times about choosing our talking points.
Yes. The right’s economic arguments, even if they’re 100% correct, are overly-technical and distant from the lives of many ordinary Americans. If we want to bring people to our side, we need to meet them where they are and present solutions to their problems that will strike them as both viable and compassionate. What’s more, we need to be more aggressive in assigning blame where it’s actually due. Why are so many inner city neighborhoods dysfunctional? That’s not the fault of the right; the right hasn’t had political control in the inner cities for decades. And if there’s any truth to the perception that people of color are not equally respected in the academy, might the animating assumptions behind affirmative action be the key contributing factor?
I do think we could do better when it comes to things like race and gender relations — even if I don’t agree with the left’s proposed fascistic “solutions.” What if we took concepts like “privilege” and “social justice” — and then cleverly turned them on their heads? What if we acknowledged the problems highlighted by the left — but then vigorously challenged the left’s explanations for their existence? Would we be more successful? I welcome your thoughts below!