SOCIALIST-Why, yes, yes I am…
I recently had the pleasure of carrying on a one sided conversation with one of the more colorful, lunatic fringe in my county. One sided in that this overbearing imbecile did all the talking and I was forced to listen. Forced to listen only because this village idiot, with his “don’t tread on me” t-shirt and his rebel flag bandana would not stop talking long enough to take a breath, let alone allow me to reply.
And, as I was listening, I kept hearing Abe Lincoln’s words in my head… “Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt.” I wanted to blurt this out so this blundering troglodyte would get the memo. And, then I thought to myself, what the hell, if this guy wants to make a complete ass of himself, who am I to deny him the illustrious privilege.
After what seemed like an eternity, he wrapped up his diatribe with one word; One word spoken in a tone so loathsome that it shook me to the core—“SOCIALIST!” Since I have been involved in politics/activism that advocates fair & just treatment of society, I’ve been stalked, I’ve had death threats, I’ve had my personal information posted on open threads , and I’ve received harassing telephone calls on my personal cell phone.
This, my friends, is the terrifying reality of the radical right wing world we live in. Corporations are people, War is thought to be the only solution to a failing economy, and there are only two classes of people: rich and poor. Women do not have the final say over their bodies, yet the death penalty is promoted (even cheered); millions of people go without food, water, shelter, and life sustaining health care, while millions of dollars are being wasted on WARS, Political campaigns, and materialistic gluttony.
And, you have the nerve to call me a socialist- you, evil bastard…
Warren J. Blumenfeld, summed it up quite nicely in his December Huffington Post article:
…..As destructive and as freedom-killing as the Right would have us believe, according to the World English Dictionary, Socialism involves “a theory or system of social organization that advocates the vesting of the ownership and control of the means of production and distribution, of capital, land, etc., in the community as a whole,” where each of us has a stake and advances in the success of our collective economy.
I, therefore, would say to those who thrust the term “Socialist” as an epithet, if a Socialist is one who advocates for a governmental single-payer quality universal health care system, which includes safe and reasonably-priced prescription and over-the-counter drug therapies, then I am a proud Socialist!
If a Socialist is one who demands that our country protects and enhances our Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid safety nets, then I am a proud Socialist!
If a Socialist is one who advocates for the further nationalization of our parks, forests, mountains, rivers, streams, shores, and off-shore waters, rather than allocating increased corporate mining, drilling, and timber rights, then I am a proud Socialist!
If a Socialist is one who advocates for free and quality education, not only through grade 12, but throughout higher education and after for everyone who desires and works to achieve their fullest potential, then I am a proud Socialist!
If a Socialist is one who advocates for a government-sponsored program that guarantees our seniors a retirement system that ensures a high quality of life free from economic burdens, then I am a proud Socialist!
If a Socialist is one who advocates for the rights of workers to organize and to collectively bargain for better wages and working conditions, then I am a proud Socialist!
If a Socialist is one who battles to eliminate workplace and larger societal inequalities based on race, nationality, citizenship status, age, sex, sexual identity, gender expression, disability, socioeconomic standing, religion, and other social identities, then I am a proud Socialist!
If a Socialist is one who works to ensure that everyone is guaranteed a comfortable and secure place to live, and one who fights against a banking system that forecloses people’s homes through scurrilous business practices, then I am a proud Socialist!
If a Socialist is one who supports effective governmental regulations on food producers to safeguard our food supply and protect against the maltreatment of animals, and on corporations, companies, and individuals to defend our environment, then I am a proud Socialist!
If a Socialist is one who supports severe restrictions on the political process to prevent mammoth contributions by individuals and corporations to buy and own politicians to influence public policy, while locking out individuals and groups unable to amass large political funds, then I am a proud Socialist!
If a Socialist is one who challenges a military industrial complex that marches to the beat of industry, and a prison industrial complex that perpetuates the racial and socioeconomic class inequities pervasive throughout the society, then I am a proud Socialist!
If a Socialist is one who contests and advocates for effective restrictions on the so-called “free market” economic system that enables the creation and enhancement of mega monopolies, outsourcing of jobs, manufacture of defective products, and inhibition in the development of clean renewable energy technologies, then I am a proud Socialist!
If a Socialist is one who demands a true progressive tax structure where everyone pays their fair share, one that inhibits massive inequities in the overwhelming accumulation of wealth by the top one percent of the nation as is currently the case, then I am a VERY proud Socialist!
So, I will never again allow those who wish to continue the economic and social status quo to use the term “Socialist” as a means of intimidation flung as an epithet, but, rather, I welcome and embrace the term as a declaration of empowerment, pride, and hope for a better social structure in a better tomorrow.
Read the entire AWESOME story by Warren j. Blumenfeld, here
Cross posted on www.definedontdefend.com and www.allthingsdemocrat.com
And, for grins and giggles… a Little Socialism Song by Roy Zimmerman:
4 thoughts on “SOCIALIST-AND, PROUD OF IT!”
If a socialist is one who thinks that society will never run out of others’ money, then I’m a proud non-socialist!
If a socialist is one who thinks that people will work to their fullest potential whether it changes their salary or not, then I’m a proud non-socialist!
If a socialist is one who can’t see that leftist nations like Germany or Great Britain don’t have lower poverty rates than the US, then I’m a proud non-socialist!
If a socialist is one who will hire people of all races whether they’re qualified for the job or not, then I’m a proud non-socialist!
If a socialist is one who supports the rights of teachers to bargain for higher wages without having to do a better job, then I’m a proud non-socialist!
If a socialist is one who supports the extremely wasteful system of Medicare, then I am a proud non-socialist!
If a socialist is one who believes that the government’s proper role is to be the perpetual mommy of the people, then I am a VERY proud non-socialist!
Socialists do not advocate a system of remuneration which fails to reward achievement.
Britain is currently ruled by a Conservative government pursuing a programme of privatisation, in healthcare and education, a government waging war on the welfare system. So your description of Britain as leftist is currently inaccurate. However, you’re right about one thing: poverty levels are increasing. Perhaps it is nonetheless the fault of socialists!
Socialists believe public services such as the police should be representative of their communities. Also that big companies should be open to all regardless of gender or race. Non-socialists such as yourself use this commitment to equality as evidence that socialists advocate employing people from ethnic minorities, for example, in place of people who are sufficiently talented to perform the job. Socialists reject the insinuation that women or people from minority groups are inevitably less talented than the white male candidate.
Why are Democrats so offended when Obama is referred to as a Socialist? They defend against this and all other references to Obama’s education and learning history as Socialist. What this election is all about is whether we want our federal government to move towards Socialism or back towards Capitalism as a means to manage our economy. Its not about Obama or Romney or Democrats and Republicans! Voters need to ignore all the distractions and research the differences between a Socialist Economy and a Capitalist Economy. Fact is the federal government has been run with a combination of both and its really just the balance between them that matters. No matter who wins this important election it will be hailed as the election that saved America because the Winners write history. Every single American should want their vote counted as coming from a hero who was part of the struggle to change America from what it is “today”. I can’t help but think that in the arena of free thinking, Americans will make the right choice if each side makes its case for economic benefits of their form of Government clearly. But all we seem to hear is each side denigrating the other. So its up to those Americans who have not just been totally brainwashed by the dogma from either side to do some objective studying of the case for each, pros and cons. Its really sad to think that such an important election will be determined by misinformation and dodging the real issues.