Letters to the Editor

Openness, progress defines being liberal | Letters | July 16

First, I would like to clarify the definitions of liberal and conservative which have recently been butchered in a letter to the editor (“Living deep in BI’s enemy territory,” July 9), so we can all avoid confusion, a trait that is apparent in the letter.

Liberty does not have much to do with conservatism, and equality has little to do with being liberal or conservative.

Both the word liberty and liberal come from the same Old French root liber - or free.

Liberal is defined as “open to new behavior or opinions and willing to discard traditional values.”

Conservative is defined as “holding to traditional attitudes and values and cautious about change or innovation, typically in relation to politics or religion.”

Liberals are the ones who founded the United States of America. Liberals ended slavery. Liberals gave women the right to vote. Liberals ended segregation. Liberals gave African Americans the right to vote.

There is nothing wrong with being liberal, just as there is nothing wrong with being conservative. However, there is a fine line between conservatism and bigotry, and the latter is something I do not tolerate.

A bigot is one who is “an illiberal or intolerant adherent of a religious creed or of any party or opinion.”

I have to say, Mr. Covert, that calling our nation superior to others is an illiberal opinion; saying that liberals are the “enemy” is an illiberal support of a specific party; and stating that America is better because of our “Christian values” is an illiberal religious affiliation.

From this, I can only assume that you have surpassed mere conservative opinions.

Besides faulty definitions, bigoted opinions, and flawed reasoning, I think it unnecessary to your argument, especially since it is one-sided and uses unsound logic, to list all of the mistakes and failures our previous Democratic presidents have made.

And yes, I admit that our Democratic presidents have made mistakes. That admission is called being liberal.

On a side note, when you refer to the current President of the United States of America, you write President Obama. Not B. Hussein Obama.

Don’t vote Republican because of the failures of Democrats. Real failure is caused neither by the mistakes of Democratic nor Republican leadership, but rather by those who are so blinded by bigotry that they cannot see that what they are doing is wrong.

The whole notion of being liberal is to be open to others’ opinions, but my beliefs are challenged when I see someone who holds such naïve opinions when it comes to political matters.

Henri K. Gendreau, age 16

Bainbridge Island

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