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defining “conservative” (part 2)

December 7, 2012
What does it mean to be a conservative?
con·ser·va·tive   [kuh n-sur-vuh-tiv]
noun
one favoring traditional views and values
a supporter of political conservatism

Being a conservative, I identify myself with the definition above. The principles and constructs that holds society together are worthy of preservation, of conservation. Tradition. Family values. Morality. These are the things my conservatism supports and upholds.

Yet contemporary liberals often use conservative in a pejorative sense. Despite all the good things conservatism stands for, many so called “progressives” have somehow arrived at the conclusion that being a conservative is a bad trait. Nowadays, calling someone conservative can carry all sorts of implied meanings, many of them negative.

noun
a person who is reluctant to change or consider new ideas
– a conformist
adjective
tending to oppose change.
– opposing innovation
– closed-minded

Does, in fact, being conservative imply that you oppose change? Does being conservative mean that you are closed-minded?

One of the best definitions I found of conservatism was:

“A political philosophy advocating the preservation of the best of the established order in society and opposing radical change.”

which adequately describes the views of most conservatives, and explains the two important aspects of being a conservative: preserving right, and opposing wrong.

Being a conservative does not mean being closed-minded. I have thought long and hard about many things, and using my own logic and reason have arrived at a conclusion. Simply because I believe that many existing institutions are good, does not mean I am not willing to accept positive change. The desire to preserve good things does not make you closed-minded, any more than throwing yourself at any change for change’s sake makes you open-minded. Around the world, society is falling apart. Governments meddling in things they shouldn’t, taking away from the hardworking and giving to the undeserving. A generation of people with a gigantic, despite being unfounded, sense of entitlement. Political correctness, that dreaded plague, has society on the brink of criminalizing dissent. The family, the most fundamental, basic unit of society, is being corrupted and redefined by the supposed “progressive” movement. Liberals will call it progress. So-called intellectuals will call it enlightenment. But what it really is is deterioration, a cancer of society.

“Old ideas can sometimes use new buildings. New ideas must use old buildings.” -Jane Jacobs

I do not hate change. I embrace and welcome positive change. I do not want stagnation. I have no qualms about letting go of things that are keeping us down, and I have no problem with embracing new things that will help us go up.

I’m a conservative, after all, and that’s what conservative means.

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