Jeff (moonlessnights) wrote,

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The controversial definitions of progressive

Yesterday's rather frustrating Pride parade got me thinking about what it means to be "progressive". Through time, I assume that its definition has always been in flux and always a cause for conflict and disagreement.

In the past few years, I have come to realize that I don't agree with the modern narrative of "progressive" as realized by the "social justice warrior" crowd. That is, they seem to believe that a combination increased segregation along largely arbitrary lines followed by applying "2 wrongs make a right" treatments to these false dichotomies is the way forward.

Personally, I don't see how this is either progressive or fruitful. I always ask "when does the war end?" and I am either told that it never will or that it will in some nebulous "later". To follow that up, I am then usually told that I don't have a right to speak on such matters since I am "privileged".

I find that the attack on myself (not personally, but through demographics) isn't a particularly useful way forward. To me, it feels like an example of the problems we sought to resolve. Ultimately, this approach is a microcosm of the broader problem in approach: "2 hates make a love".

I don't buy it. I think that the way forward can only be found by imagining a world where these problems don't exist and trying to build that. Instead of looking backward, I think we need to look forward.

While I know that this is an unpopular position, I think that it is the only way we can know that we are moving in the right direction. Some will say that it is an impossible dream but I realized that it is at least a dream worth having.

Imagining a world where we are divided and looking for a reason to demand special treatment or attack someone who we feel is getting it too easy just doesn't inspire me or sit well with me. In that nightmare, there is never a reason for inspiration or joy. It is just a place where we blindly trudge forward, hoping we don't live to see what is over the next mountain.

Imagining a world where we are beyond those trivial troubles and moving forward as a complex sea of individuals is something which can inspire me to act, to care. I might be the only one who thinks it is the right way to live, but it is a life I can choose and a dream which gives me reason to smile and to hope.

It might not be popular, but it is the "progressive" I think we should adopt. I need to stop apologizing for that or acting as though it is a question. While we might not agree with each other, at least I can agree with myself.


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