Leftists, Ask Yourselves: ‘Should I Stay or Should I Go?'

Since the left views Donald Trump as Hitler and the Republican Party – currently dominant in Congress and the majority of statehouses­ – as accomplices in his fascist tyranny, the existential question each liberal-progressive ought to be asking himself is the very question a punk rock band made famous as the refrain of their most popular tune.

The lyrics of The Clash's 1982 song "Should I Stay or Should I Go" reflect the singer's indecisiveness about whether he should remain in a relationship with a woman who today entices him and tomorrow plays hard to get.  "One day it's fine, and next it's black," sings Mick Jones of his mercurial muse, "so if you want me off your back, well, come on and let me know: should I stay or should I go?"  Considering founding member Joe Strummer's overtly leftist politics, the band could hardly have anticipated that their song, whose content is no more serious than an adolescent romance, would now serve as a metaphor for progressives and their love-hate relationship with the United States. 

The question as to why liberals simply do not pack up and leave the United States has been on my mind, particularly after a recent conversation with a self-proclaimed "bleeding heart" fellow congregant at my church, who looked at me venomously when I told him I consider myself a constitutionalist.  His offense was all the greater because my wife is black.

"The Founding Fathers presided over one of the greatest crimes against humanity in history," said the chap regarding American slavery, and "the Constitution made blacks three fifths of a person."  With these arguments, he intended to shame me into rejecting my affinity for the Constitution because, in his view, anyone sympathetic to the plight of blacks in this country – particularly a white man married to a black woman – would surely look on the founding of the USA with disgust.

My immediate response was that America's transcendent, foundational ideas – that all people are created equal with natural rights and that limited government with separated powers is the best means devised by mankind so far of protecting those rights – could not be invalidated either by my wife's ethnicity or the fact that among the Founders were slaveholders.  Then I began to explain the Three-Fifths Clause as a device to curb the power of the slaveholding states, but my interlocutor's brief tolerance for such political incorrectness wore out before I could conclude my thoughts.  He cut me off, self-righteously saying: "I'm an attorney, and I've heard all these arguments.  I don't need you to tell me anything more."  The possibility of productive dialogue between us thus ended.

My nagging thought after this conversation was, if my co-religionist has so much disdain for the U.S. Constitution and so little interest in hearing opinions in favor of it, why in the world would he – and by extension, so many like-minded statists – want to continue living in so hellish a place, governed by a corrupt document and populated by tens of millions who actually cherish it? 

Perhaps America's Jacobins stay in this country because they enjoy the freedom of speech protected in the very Constitution they vigorously disdain.  Yet instead of expressing gratitude for this liberty, they use it to shout down opposing viewpoints.  They contemplate aloud bombing the Trump White House, make constant counter-factual pronouncements that Islam is a religion of peace, and linguistically manipulate people into believing that individuals with male genitalia ought to be allowed unimpeded opportunities to relieve themselves in the women's restroom.  Conversely, they detest any idea that does not jibe with their worldview, and they have little self-control in their heavy-handed efforts to stop their opposition from exercising their free speech rights.

The left wants unrestricted free choice regarding whether a baby in the womb lives or dies, but it reviles anyone who wishes to have the freedom of choice to select his own health insurance or where to send his children to school.  Leftists express consternation at the plight of the poor, but they give far less charitably to the indigent than do conservatives, and in fact, they prefer to have the strong arm of the government steal from the taxpayers to redistribute money to those whom they themselves do precious little to assist.  The Tenth Amendment has wonderful appeal to the neo-Confederates in the sanctuary jurisdictions that reject federal immigration law, but when Arizona attempted to follow that law, as in the case of S.B. 1070 some years ago, the left developed a selective amnesia about the Bill of Rights and fought the Grand Canyon State all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court.  

One can only wonder why progressives bother to stay in a country where they have lost thousands of legislative seats nationally since 2010 and have seen their presidential messiah replaced not by their exalted female demigod, but by an openly flawed, crude, Caucasian, heterosexual, and pro-Christian capitalist with no political experience.  Progressives see inequality, injustice, anti-minority racism, misogyny, and oppression of LGBTQ persons every day, all the time in the United States, and they make their disgust with these perceived offenses known loudly through protests, riots, civil unrest, and unhinged interviews with an incredulous Tucker Carlson

To our geographic north lies a European-style welfare state that spends about 35 percent of its federal budget annually on elderly programs, children's services, and health care, and to the south one encounters a Latin American kleptocrat paradise where the only white Anglo-Saxon Protestants to be found are tourists spending their filthy lucre at beach resorts staffed by the downtrodden brown people of the Estados Unidos Mexicanos.  What exactly is keeping American lefties from thumbing a ride to Toronto or Tijuana and asking the nice socialists across the border for political asylum?

Progressives have patience only with those who share their opinions, and in their haughtiness, they believe themselves justified in employing the heckler's veto and in thrusting their ideas on everyone around them.  Yet despite having cultural control through the universities, the entertainment industry, and the mainstream media for more than half a century, they have been unable to convert enough Americans to give them a lasting majority in the Electoral College.

The White House was occupied by America's first social justice warrior president from 2009 to 2017; his bureaucratic acolytes continue in stealth to do  the yeoman's work of stifling traditional American values, but the left is still unable to silence the opposition.  Rush Limbaugh, Mark Levin, Sean Hannity, Herman Cain, and others command the attention of millions of Americans on a daily basis, and the Tea PartyConvention of States, and State of Jefferson movements are examples of the grassroots of American patriots who refuse to be subjugated by the collectivist mandarins in the District of Columbia and the various state capitals.

With so much resistance against big government simmering from sea to shining sea, it seems high time for the statists among us start asking themselves if they should pack their Birkenstocks and head off to any number of socialists utopias, from San Salvador to Stockholm, where they can have all the government-run equality they can stomach.

John Steinreich has an M.A. in church history from Colorado Theological Seminary.  He has authored two Christian-themed non-fiction books: The Words of God? – the Bible, the Qur'an and How They Are Lived in the Post-9/11 World and A Great Cloud of Witnesses – Lessons for Modern Day Christians from Church History.  His works are available on Lulu Press and on Kindle.