Conservatives can dream, too

George Bernard Shaw stated that "Some men see things as they are and ask why.  I see things that never were and ask why not."  Robert Kennedy used this quote in nearly every speech he made during his ill-fated presidential campaign of 1968.  Despite being the only person ever to win both a Nobel Prize for Literature and an Oscar, Shaw was also a strident anti-Semite, a noted eugenicist, and a lifelong avowed socialist.  To his credit, he did pen Pygmalion, which, with a bit of musical assistance from Lerner and Loewe, became My Fair Lady — a play that is the gold standard of musical theater.  Shaw's life serves as an example of the imperfection of all who have ever drawn a breath.

Today, Shaw shares a position on the Mt. Rushmore of socialism with such disparate individuals as Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.  Utopian thought, it would seem, is not bound by age or sex differences.  In our society, however, it is bound by political persuasion.  The belief held by those on the left that utopian thought is theirs and theirs alone drives me, as a conservative, to distraction.  Progressives, in their usual impolite manner, declare that only "visionaries" who espouse a desire to live in a world of socialism (with its inevitable tyranny) are capable of envisioning our world as a better place.  Only those willing to sit in a circle singing "Kumbaya" or Lennon's "Imagine" (oh, the ironic yet inelegant symmetry of Lennon putting Lenin to music) are deemed worthy of asking, "Why not?"

Well, as a conservative, I am asking, "Why not?"  I want to live in a meritocratic world where equality of opportunity is guaranteed, but results must be attained — a world where equality of circumstance is neither expected nor overvalued.  The person who makes good choices and puts his back into his efforts will do well.  The person who expects the labors of others to support him will not.  We would celebrate winners but also encourage losers to do better next time.  Those individuals unable to compete due to circumstances beyond their control will be accommodated.  For all others, accomplishment will determine circumstance.  I say, "Why not?"

I'd like to live in a world where the color of a person's skin is truly irrelevant.  No more is given to, nor expected of a white, brown, or black person.  A person would be celebrated or not, depending on his accomplishments.  Occasionally, we get a little help from our friends (there's that John Lennon again), but our labors will have built "that" or not.  Honest criticisms of accomplishment, or lack thereof, are welcomed and taken at face value.  No racism or spin is allowed, and none shall be inferred.  I say, "Why not?"

I'd like to live in a world of diverse opinions, not a world where we are commanded or coerced to think a certain way.  God has given us the gifts of logic and common sense.  We are certainly able, though not often enough inclined, to use them.  Let's strive to utilize those gifts on a routine basis.  I say, "Why not?"

I'd like to live in a world where people have respect for authority because they have granted that authority.  I say, "Why not?"

Finally, I'd like to live in a world where all people are free to worship their God peacefully and without fear of discrimination.  In that world, no religion or sect would do damage to any other.  There would be no room for hateful or warlike ideologies.  You are even free to choose Lennon's "no religion."  It would be up to each individual.  My conservative utopia might not be the stuff of which socialist dreams are made, but I will pit my vision against theirs any day.  I emphatically say, "Why not?"

Image: PxHere.

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