Being something of a contrarian by nature, I have decided to confess to being right wing. In fact, I am actively counselling my children and grandchildren to become right wingers.
Easy now. Just take a few deep breaths and you'll be fine. Remember, being right wing has not been declared illegal or seditious.
My point is, no one in their right mind ever admits to being right wing. The left has been supremely successful in vilifying right wingers.
Admitting to being right wing is akin to confessing to smoking. Cigarettes that is. Not pot. Pot is left wing.
According to the left, being right wing means you are racist, greedy, pro-war, anti-choice and homophobic. And, oh yes, anti-women and just plain mean.
If you are right wing, you are most likely a white male, and worse, you actually like Americans.
For sure you're an extremist. And God help you if you're Christian. Seriously. Especially if you are an evangelical Christian. They are the lepers of our politically correct, secular society. The word on the street would have us believe that Stephen Harper is one of them.
On the religious thing, I Googled the phrase "Christian right" the other day just for fun. (I know, I know, I should get out more.) There were about 800,000 hits.
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Then I searched "Christian left." There were about 60,000 hits. What the heck? Are most Christians right wing? Or is it just what leftists want people to think?
The truth is, being left or right of centre is a fiscal economic term. I am right wing because I believe in free markets and capitalism.
I really like it when corporations make profits. Even Big Banks. Especially Big Banks. Without profits, how the hell else are we supposed to pay for our social programs? Duh.
All that stuff about the five Rs - the Radical Racist Redneck Religious Right - is jingoism at its worst. But it works, and has the desired effect. Somehow the theories of Karl Marx and Adam Smith have been lost in this hubbub of bigotry.
Leftists, read my lips: Right wingers do not run around in camouflage gear in the woods, nor do they stone women for adultery.
Now that I've got that off my chest, here's my bellyache about lefties: I think they are inconsistent, illogical and hypocritical, which takes away 99 per cent of their credibility.
It wouldn't be so bad if our leaders walked the walk. Al Gore is just one example. We're told that he lives in a huge house that leaves a carbon footprint the size of a good old Canadian Sasquatch while continuing to lecture the rest of us about global warming.
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Closer to home, how about our sacred cow, health care? Left wingers react like scalded cats when private medicine is discussed. Maybe someone can explain to me why former Liberal MP Belinda Stronach went to the United States for treatment for breast cancer if Canadian medicare is so great for the rest of us.
And if it's okay to fund abortions in private, for-profit clinics, then why isn't it okay for other medically necessary procedures, such as knee operations or MRIs? And don't get me started about Newfoundland Premier Danny Williams and his decision to get heart surgery in the United States.
I submit that we can be socially progressive without believing that corporations are inherently evil and profit is bad. The left really believes that lowering a tax on someone rich is stealing from the poor. Maybe they never had any nursery rhymes read to them as children. They hate success so much that they really would kill the goose that laid the golden egg.
Not everyone can work in the public service with inflated salaries, banked sick days and indexed pensions if there is no one out there making a taxable profit to pay for it.
Maybe a whole bunch of lefties will write in and tell me where I'm wrong in my thinking. Maybe they'll even have the guts to state if their own personal income comes from the public or private sector.
I predict the naysayers will be negative and accusatory. That's what the left does best.
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Which brings me to my real reason for counselling right wingness to my loved ones. Right wingers are happy. Left wingers are never happy. All those battles do not bring contentment and joy. In fact, the more stuff they get the more unhappy they become.
Happiness is a good goal, not only because it benefits you, but also everyone around you, especially those who love you and need you in their lives.
Maybe some right wingers will write in too. I predict they will be agreeable and contented with their lot, however humble it may be. In other words, happy.
Marilyn Baker lives in Richmond, B.C.
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