On the issue of liberal ideas, etc., the United States was the first country to be founded on the liberal ideas of John Locke and other philosophers of the Enlightenment, with no monarchy, no hereditary aristocracy and no established religion.

The Bill of Rights guarantees every citizen the freedoms advocated by the liberal philosophers — equality under the law, freedom of religion, freedom of speech, freedom of the press, the right to gather in peaceful assembly, the right to petition the government for redress of grievances, and the right to bear arms, among other freedoms and rights.

In this sense, virtually "all Americans are liberals." However, questions arose before and after the country was founded. In the Dred Scott decision of 1856-57, the Supreme Court ruled that these rights only applied to white men, and that blacks had no rights whatsoever that any white man was obligated to respect. Therefore, the Constitution was amended several times to extend those rights to ever larger classes of all citizens black, brown, etc., in 1868, then specifically to blacks in 1870, to women in 1919, and against the "poll tax" in 1964.

Yes, America is a very liberal founded nation.

Kenneth Douglas

Dickinson

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(8) comments

Carlos Ponce

What was "liberal" in 1776 is considered "conservative" in 2018.
The current "Liberals" (note the capital letter) are more "Socialist", the kind Vladimir Lenin said would lead to Communism.

Gary Scoggin

Despite Lenin’s pronouncements, Russia didn’t turn Communist through a gradual evolution from Socialism. It turned Communist through revolution. Just like every other Communist country in the world.

Gary Scoggin

Carlos, you are right that the definition of “liberal” in Locke’s day was different than today’s usage. I don’t think “Conservative “ is the proper descriptor either. “Liberal” in the older context refers to countries with a government accountable to the people with lots of freedoms and an established rule of law.

Carlos Ponce

I didn't use the term "Conservative" but "conservative". The capitalization of the first letter makes a differentiation. But your definition does reflect the Conservative Americans of today especially "an established rule of law" as opposed to the re-interpretation at whim exercised by Liberals especially in the judiciary.

Paul Hyatt

The term liberal today means far more than it used to. Now the liberals stand for no morality, no God, perversion, slaughtering of the innocent while allowing the guilty to roam free. We used to have the best education system in the world till the "liberals" took over and destroyed the system. No our children come out and do not know how our government is run, do not know what hard work is, and do not know even how to do basic math or how to count money back to someone after a purchase has been made....

Gary Scoggin

I know a lot of liberals today with high moral standards and who believe in God. Some are even pro-life. Perhaps you need to get out more.

Bailey Jones

While the founding fathers held views that we might call conservative today (racism, patriarchy, class-ism, a poor understanding of science, etc) they were quite radical in their day. You have to be a radical to throw away 1000 years of god ordained monarchy for a form of government that had never been tried successfully in the whole history of mankind. The conservatives of that era were the Tories, who, as conservatives are want to do, didn't want to break with their tradition. After all England (and Europe in general) had been a relatively stable monarchy for over 1000 years, the king was ordained by god, as was the social position of every human. You were born into your place and that's where you belonged. This wasn't just a political position, it was a religious belief, and centuries old. It was the age of enlightenment, or radical, and yes - what we would call liberal - ideas, such as men being endowed with a humanity that no monarch or government could take away, and that people were limited only by their imagination and effort, not the chance of birth, and that god didn't in fact choose who would and should be lord over who. In fact, Conservatism as an intellectual movement arose as a response to the Enlightenment. Many people didn't care for Enlightenment ideas and wanted to take America back to the good old days where everyone knew his place and the king ruled not by his own merit, but by the grace of god. Many Tories fled back to Europe, or Canada, or the islands, often, I'm sorry to say, at the hands of angry mobs who burned down their homes and businesses, stripped them naked and poured boiling hot pitch and feathers over their skin. And mobs, as our President likes to point out, are always liberals.

George Croix

Well, about half of it is, or even crazier 'progressive', or totally deranged 'resistance'....
They can get better, but they have to want to......

Anyway, this is 2018, not 1718......
A lot of watches need to be reset..............

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