The Dialogue Between Left and Right

This democratic republic has thrived through the healthy debate between the Left and the Right. During the debate over the Constitution, the Federalists argued that a strong federal government was necessary for this country to thrive, while the anti-Federalists argued that the United States needed strong state and local governments to protect our civil liberties. In the early days of the republic, Alexander Hamilton forcefully advocated for a urban vision of an America of commerce and big business while Thomas Jefferson advanced a rural vision of an America of yeoman farmers.

As American history has unfolded, liberals and conservatives have debated the most important issues of the day: slavery; imperialism; women’s suffrage; workers’ rights; civil rights; war and peace; LGBTQ rights; reproductive rights. There are some questions that a healthy democratic republic will forever debate. How do we balance majority rule while protecting minority rights? How do we create a climate where businesses can thrive while also protecting workers from being exploited? How do we address issues of economic and racial inequalities that prevent large segments of our population from enjoying the American dream? How do we balance the needs of the community with the rights of the individual?

I’m a proud liberal Democrat. But I don’t think liberals are perfect. If you look at American history, liberals have been right about some things, wrong about some things. But you can say the same thing about moderates, conservatives, radical leftists, libertarians. No one group or political philosophy has a monopoly on truth.

In a healthy democratic republic, all sides vigorously debated their points of view to try to persuade a majority of people to agree with them. But there was also a willingness to compromise and find common ground to try to address the problems of the day. One can look at the collaboration of liberal Ted Kennedy and conservative Orrin Hatch that produced the American With Disabilities Act, the Ryan White Act to help AIDS victims, the State Children’s Health Insurance Program which provided health insurance to thousands of the working poor. Liberal Paul Wellstone collaborated with conservative Pete Domenici on the Mental Health Parity Act to give mentally ill people greater access to health care insurance.

I complain a lot about the Republican Party and the cult of personality that has surrounded Donald Trump. It saddens me to see more independent minded conservatives and moderates get marginalized within the Republican Party. I’m critical of the Republican Party, but I also realize that it’s important to all Americans for the Republican Party to return to a more sane and healthy state.

For all our political differences, liberals and conservatives should have common ground on opposing racism and anti-immigrant prejudice and religious intolerance. Though they seem to be small in number, I respect those moderates and principled conservatives who are trying to fight the racism, anti-immigrant bias and religious intolerance within the Republican Party.

It is in the interests of progressives and all Americans that these principled conservatives win their fight.

In this Jubilee video, Liberals and Conservatives came together to work through differences of opinion and see if they can find middle ground by discussing Trump, voting, and partisanship.

Conservative pundit Rachel Campos-Duffy and liberal pundit Cathy Areu are total political opposites and best friends. They talk about how they teach their kids to respond when they’re challenged on their political views.

Black conservatives and liberals hash it out in this VICE video

Trump supporters and Hillary supporters talk about politics in this Buzz Feed video

In this Jubilee video, Democrats and Republicans talk about their similarities and differences.

About angelolopez

I’ve wanted to be an artist all my life. Since I was a child I’ve drawn on any scrap of paper I could get a hold of. When I went to San Jose State University, I became more exposed to the works of the great fine artists and illustrators. My college paintings were heavily influenced by the humorous illustrations of Peter De Seve, an illustrator for the New Yorker magazine. I also fell under the spell of the great muralists of the 1930s, especially Thomas Hart Benton and Diego Rivera. I graduated with a degree in Illustration. Angelo Lopez has had illustrations published in Tikkun Magazine, the Palo Alto Daily News and Z Magazine. From April 2008 to May 2011, Angelo's cartoons were regularly published in the Tri-City Voice, a weekly newspaper that covers the Fremont, Hayward, Milpitas, Neward, Sunol and Union City areas in California. He did a political webcomic starring his cartoon character Jasper for the progressive blogsite Everyday Citizen. Since December 2011, Angelo does a regular weekly political cartoon for the Philippine News Today, a Filipino American newspaper based in the San Francisco Bay Area. Angelo is a member of the Sunnyvale Art Club, and the Northern California chapter of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators. During the 1990s, he was a member of the part-timer workers SEIU unit in the city of Sunnyvale. Angelo won the 2013, 2015 and 2016 and 2018 Sigma Delta Chi award for editorial cartooning for newspapers with a circulation under 100,000. He has also won the 2016 RFK Book and Journalism Award for Editorial Cartoons. Angelo won first prize for the Best of the West contest in 2016 and third prize in 2017. Angelo is married to Lisa Reeber. They enjoy taking walks, watching movies and hanging out with their nieces.
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2 Responses to The Dialogue Between Left and Right

  1. Diane Wahto says:

    Whilw I agree with you in general, there are some things I will never compromise on. Even so, I do have friends who are on the other side of the divide, yet we remain friends.

    • angelolopez says:

      I agree Diane. There are some things that both liberals and conservatives should fight: racism, antisemitism, Islamophobia, anti-immigrant bias, homophobia, fascism. I respect the anti-Trump conservatives fighting these things. They have to fight the Alt Right influence within the conservative movement so we could have a healthy right wing.

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