Thursday, April 12, 2007

I Guess I'm Not A "Real" Progressive!

Recently at Pandagon, there was yet another silly tiff about the politically-correct definition of a "real" progressive. The question was: can a "real" progressive eat meat? And the answer (not surprisingly) turned out to be no.

Oh, there were plenty of people commenting who THOUGHT they could be real progressives without giving up meat. It was a very heated and contentious post, indeed. And it certainly didn't seem to be the official position of the blog that carnivores failed to qualify as real progressives. But the post generated a lot of heat and very little light.

Unrepentant carnivore that I am, I of course weighed in with the opinion that whether or not a person eats meat has nothing to do with their progressivism or lack thereof. Several people agreed, but a few shouted, booed and hissed us down. One idiot in particular huffily informed me that I did not have "the moral high ground" on the issue.

Earlier in the thread, I had taken pains to explain that I am a recovering alcoholic, and that therefore I find it enough of a challenge to keep sober every day. While I admire vegetarians who refuse to eat meat on principle (vegans being another matter entirely, as the position that eating honey because it exploits the poor little bees is too ridiculous to humor), I do not find it necessary to be join their number.

What was the enlightened "progressive" response to this? That I was being oversensitive. One pimply-faced, twentysomething smartass asked me who'd "peed in my Wheaties." I might have embarrassed a few people when I reminded them I'd mentioned my reason for not being interested in vegetarianism. Then again, I rather doubt it; zealots seem to have no sense of shame.

Funny, I've always considered myself to be progressive. I always thought it had something to do with principle: a belief in societal progress. Silly me! It's actually all about following dimwit, pharasaical rules. Kinda like the fundamentalism of the Religious Right this crowd so vehemently professes to abhor.

I'm too liberal to suit the conservatives, and too conservative to suit the liberals. Woe is me!

My views used to be considered those of a thoughtful, reasonable person. Nowadays, they're considered extreme by both entrenched and societally-accepted "sides." And we wonder why the rest of the civilized world regards American politics as insane.


Post a Comment

<< Home