July 20, 2019 | 96° F

Conservatism not black and white


Arrogance in Political Views is Astounding. Yesterday's column, "Liberal bias among students justified," reflects an all too common view among students these days — that liberals are intellectually superior to everyone else. The author's argument goes essentially like this: College students are generally better thinkers than most people, and college students are generally liberal, so liberal thinking must be better than other views. This argument almost seems too pretentious to truly be made, but let's take a look at some of the things the author actually says.

He points out that on the on average, liberals have higher IQs than conservatives. While this fact may be true, using it to argue that liberal views make more sense than conservative views is no better than arguing that conservatives are better people than liberals because they give more to charity.

He asserts that conservatives view the world in black-and-white distinctions, while liberals see things in "a more dynamic light." This kind of heavily biased generalization of how people arrive at their political views removes any objectivity from the subject. To properly analyze political issues, one must carefully consider all viewpoints, rather than dismiss all those that differ from their own.

The author's worst offenses come in his conclusion, where he states that in college, "We are taught to be inquisitive, open-minded and logical, but are exposed to conservative thought by individuals who do not exhibit any of these qualities." It is rather bold to assert that conservatives cannot be inquisitive, open-minded or logical without backing it up.

Even more insulting and appalling, however, is the author's final sentence, which states that, "Today's conservatism asks that you surrender both [your heart and your brain]." Childish hyperboles like this have no place in an intelligent political discussion. Liberals claim to be the most enlightened and open-minded of the bunch, yet many can't even open their minds enough to give objective consideration to other political views. I implore all political-minded people not to change their opinions, but at least examine others without a smug sense of superiority clouding your thought process.

Matthew Simcha is a School of Arts and Sciences junior majoring in economics and statistics.


Matthew Simcha

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