Blog 2531 – 10.02.2022
In This Ever Changing World We Are Encouraged To Change
Of the two ideological camps, Conservatives and Progressives, I have found myself drawn to the later. Till my mid-forties I was in the first camp, but several changes in my life lead me to consider the other view point and I found it a better fit for me.
I was born in Chattanooga, Tennessee in the middle of the last century. The South was and still is to some degree the land that time forgot. A little less than one hundred years before my arrival there were several great battles of the Civil War fought in and around my home town and the scars and wounds were still evident. Dixie was and still is a favorite song of southern conservatives especially the line, “Where old times there are not forgotten, look away, look away, Dixieland.”
Conservatives are always wishing to keep or to conserve some mythical golden age, the good old days. Margaret Mitchell the author of Gone With The Wind grieved the loss of a civilization of knights and their fair ladies, of masters and slaves, that was gone with the wind. Unwilling to accept that the cause of states right to own slaves was lost, a secret order of The Knights of the Ku Klux Clan was established after the war to intimidate and terrorize the freed people and those who stood with them. Shortly after the occupying Yankee troops left the south, Jim Crow laws were passed and it was business as usual in the south again, two steps forward and three steps back. Segregation or Apartheid was a very real thing in the Chattanooga that I was born into in 1950.
The Civil Rights movement of the nineteen sixties brought desegregation and voting rights back to some degree for a people long discriminated against. There are many conservatives who bided there time, anxious to reverse the progress once made.
For fifty years women have had a right to choose and the Supreme Court recently reversed itself on Roe v. Wade. Some believe that same court will in time reverse other progressive rulings regarding a right to privacy. State legislatures north, south, east, and west across the land have passed laws to restrict a woman’s right to choose and to limit voting rights.
In a month a very important mid-term election will take place in this country. Will we go backwards or forward? Women and young people will most assuredly cast the deciding votes in each election up and down the ballot.
We in this country used to pay at least lip service to the idea that “Progress is our most important product.” We are standing at that proverbial fork in the road. If we know where we want to go we must choose. There is a sign post up ahead. I hope it is not announcing the twilight of progressive thought in this country.
Your friend and fellow traveler,