"The next time someone asks if you are a conservative or hold conservative values, think of the original definition of the word. For most on the right side of the street, it should be an easy answer. If it is not an easy answer, it might be time for some soul searching."
When you read much of the press these days, there are very few kind words to say about conservatives. In fact, much of the opining about conservatives is out and out brutal. Selfish, troglodytes. Backward thinking neanderthals. The opposite of change agents. Stuck in the mud. And hated. Yuck!
Part of the problem with how conservatives are portrayed today is definitional. Somehow many on the other side of the political spectrum (including most of the press) think conservative means to conserve ones money by paying fewer taxes. Now that is not a bad concept at all, and I am sure not going to besmirch it. However, that is not what conservationism is all about.
It is not a new term. Not even uniquely American. It goes back centuries and across the Atlantic. Some say it had its roots in the French Revolution. In any event, conservatism is to "protect and conserve" (based on the Latin derivation of the word) "inherited traditions and customs." Or to put it in more modern terms - motherhood, church and apple pie.
In fact, conservatives are not even anti-change. They embrace change if it is organic and does not violate "inherited traditions and customs." By the way, during the last last election, some ran on the platform of "burning it all down, and starting over!" That is not the way a traditional conservative thinks. However, to "drain the swamp", so we can get back to "protecting and conserving our inherited traditions and customs" is fine with me. I believe it to be in line with conservative thinking.
Here comes a key point as I understand it. Most conservatives also believe in absolute truth. Many believe in the authenticity and sanctity of the Holy Bible. Most if not all believe in "originalism" with our Constitution and Bill of Rights. In other words, certain documents are sacrosanct. Not subject to updating to be with the times. And that is the great divide with current day liberals and progressives.
The next time someone asks if you are a conservative or hold conservative values, think of the original definition of the word. For most on the right side of the street, it should be an easy answer. If it is not an easy answer, it might be time for some soul searching.