This tidbit is in answer to the Facebook question: “Given your posts on Liberalism, would you say that classical liberalism isn't the problem today, but Progressivism?”
Please listen to liberal David Rubin’s excellent 10-minute monologue for context*. Let me begin my reply to the above question with Mr Rubin’s comments,
“The Regressive, the Control, or the Liberal left, whatever you want to call it, is a group of people who place identity, usually based on immutable characteristics in a pecking order of social importance such as race, gender, and religion where victimhood is the highest virtue to be had. This ‘oppression’ Olympics allows groups to compete for who is the most oppressed, and thus the most virtuous. And, if someone isn’t as oppressed as you, you have full authority to oppress them accordingly. So Black Lives Matters can protest the gay rights march in Toronto. White Gay men can be banned from leading LGBT organizations on college campuses. Pro-life women can be kicked out of women’s marches, and so on. This backwards ideology which demands that we judge each other not on the content of our character, but on the color of our skin or some other baked-in trait, puts the collective ahead of the individual.”
At the beginning of Mr Rubin’s piece, he lists the names (faces) now used for contemporary liberals: Progressives; Liberal Left; Regressive Left; Illiberal Left; Classical Liberals, etc. Then he offers a list of contemporary progressive objectionable behaviors, from his classical liberal viewpoint!! For example, he cites things like identity politics(see quote above); labeling speakers as racists and violating their first amendment right to speak; and even perpetrating physical violence on college campuses.
Yet, according to Mr Rubin, it’s not ‘Classical Liberalism’, but ‘Progressives’ who are responsible for this departure from the ‘classical liberal’…prototypical tolerance! So…which one of the ‘faces’ of liberalism is actually responsible? Or, is liberalism really a problem at all?
During Mr Rubin’s monologue, he calls himself a card-carrying liberal who supports abortion; gay marriage; legalization of marijuana; rejects the death penalty; favors free speech for all—including White supremacists; he refers to himself as a free thinker; “and the list goes on.” Yet as a classical liberal, who supports freedom for all, he laments the behavior of his contemporary ‘liberal’ friends, “I’ve watched as my team has gone off the deep end.” In other words, according to Mr Rubin, ‘modern’ liberalism has abandoned his ‘classical’ liberalism!!!
Yet, herein lay the problem! On the contrary, Mr Rubin misunderstands; for ‘modern’ liberalism has not abandoned him at all! Liberalism is like a ladder; as one steps-down the liberal ladder, all liberalism—regardless of the title you assign it--ends in the same place!!
Here we go! If you examine the definition of ‘liberal’ as far back as in the 1828 Webster’s dictionary**, you will find the final entry as: “licentious; free to access”. ‘Licentious’ means sexual license***; and ‘free to excess’ refers to lawlessness. These definitions describe the ‘nature’ of liberalism. As a dog barks, so liberalism supports licentiousness and free to excess!
Furthermore, the Bible uses the word lasciviousness in Galatians 5:19, which is synonymous with licentious, and is called a “work of the flesh”(man’s sin nature); confirming Webster’s definition of liberalism.
Although Mr Rubin may be correct in that classical liberalism in America once held values such as: freedom of speech for all; tolerance; respect for the opinions of another without cursing, beating, or killing him; he misses 3 key points:
1.Those values are not liberal values…but Biblical values! They originate in God, Himself!
2.By changing the Biblical doctrine of ‘the separation of church and state’, into ‘the separation of God from the state’, liberalism must reject the Bible; which is both the origin, and most importantly—the sustainer of those traditional values!!
3.As the Bible is rejected, and man’s sin nature is released, God’s gift of freedom to man is perverted into “free to excess”, i.e.lawlessness.
Therefore, the rejection of God’s word, combined with man’s sin nature(flesh), perverts liberal freedom into: “every man does what is right in his own eyes” (Judg17:6); and is followed closely by sexual license, which is nothing more than a euphemism for sexual perversion.
Here is the key to this puzzle, although classical liberalism historically espouses ‘some’ great values, because the ‘nature’ of liberalism is licentious--over time---the lawlessness of licentiousness works to pervert freedom into the works of the flesh. Galatians 5:13 says, we are called to freedom, but are not to use that freedom as occasion for the flesh(sin nature)!!! In plain English, this means do not think your freedom is a freedom to sin! For, God never gave freedom to man to choose sin! Only liberalism believes it can abuse God’s freedom to choose ‘anything’ the flesh desires! On the contrary, God forbade Adam to eat of only one tree!!! Yet, He gave Adam the choice of literally millions of trees to eat!! Therefore, if freedom is used to choose evil, it enslaves, limits, and even destroys choice…and with it progress!
Therefore, when Mr Rubin says, “I’ve watched as my team has gone off the deep end”; in actuality, that is liberalism’s destiny! Once on the slippery slope down the ladder of liberalism, there is only one place to land…one can only move from light to darkness—for that is the very nature of licentiousness!
Therefore, the battle over which face (name) of liberalism is the culprit of America’s woes--is mute!! Progressives; Liberal Left; Regressive Left; Illiberal Left; Classical Liberals—all ultimately drive us to the same camp: a rejection of God, and His word...ultimately ending with God’s judgment!
My beloved friend, this is a spiritual battle—not a political one! Don’t let liberal/progressives fool you by changing their name! Their stripes are the same!
The critical question is: will the Judaeo/Christian values, which created not only America, but Western Culture, continue? Or, will the liberal/atheist values replace them?
Actually…the choice is yours!
***Is it possible even to argue the sexual perversion so present in our culture is not due to liberal--so called--freedom?!?! If there is one absolute evidence of liberalism’s evil—it is their marketing of sexual license, i.e. sexual behavior is without boundaries!
"Genius is nothing but continued attention." -Claude Adrien Helvetius