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I realized something the other day that the term liberal may be dead…

I refer to myself as a progressive, the media as a whole refers to our movement as the progressive movement, unless it’s Fox News using the term liberal as a pejorative.  In fact almost the only time that I hear the word liberal used it’s being used as an insult and we as a group appear to have ceded that territory, given up the word, and moved to a new label.

I'm not going to turn this into a call to arms to take back "liberal", but let’s talk about this.  I myself feel a little upset that the branding battle for liberal appears to be over and we lost.  How do you all feel about the term?  Do you still use it?  If you do, do you use it when talking with people outside of your progressive (see, I’m doing it) friend set?

Let me know what you think in the comments.

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Comment Preferences

  •  You must have missed NPR this morning (6+ / 0-)

    discussing terminology in politics.

    ie "death taxes" vs. estate taxes., etc.

    They spoke about progressive and liberal.

    They ended the section saying that the term liberal is making a comeback.

    I agree; in fact I have agreed since Howard Dean came on the national scene.

    I am a Liberal.

    Notice: This Comment © 2013 ROGNM

    by ROGNM on Tue Feb 26, 2013 at 06:24:38 AM PST

  •  I proudly call myself a... (4+ / 0-)

    liberal, progressive Democrat...always seemed like a good thing to me...I'm proud of my ideals.

    We are not broke, we are being robbed.

    by Glen The Plumber on Tue Feb 26, 2013 at 06:28:29 AM PST

  •  I worry about the word 'progressive' (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Glen The Plumber, greenbell, rigcath

    I've seen too many people use it in a way that can be easily replaced with the phrase 'witch hunter'.

    So let's say it loud: I'M A LIBERAL AND I'M PROUD!

    YES! I'm a bleeding-heart liberal. Ya gotta problem wid dat?

    by mwm341 on Tue Feb 26, 2013 at 06:29:15 AM PST

  •  Re: (0+ / 0-)

    Though I prefer liberal, I probably use progressive more often than I'd like.

  •  I'm still a McGovern liberal, always was & will be (4+ / 0-)

    I haven't changed about that, the world has.
    I think people who were liberal who now call themselves progressive because liberal has a bad taint put on it by the stupidest people in media are  runaways. Don't tell me youre going to put up a fight against conservatives if the first thing you do is allow them to define you and get you to change your name.
    i think of people who called themselves or were called liberals and acted like liberals, like Thurgood Marshall McGovern, and FDR. Those are th people I want to think and act like. Nobody who calls themselves progressives can compare to that yet.

    Why let the biggest chumps in the world define you and tell you what you can call yourself?  

    Happy just to be alive

    by exlrrp on Tue Feb 26, 2013 at 06:38:15 AM PST

  •  death of the liberal class (0+ / 0-)

    excellent book by Chris Hedges

    article updating the book after the 2012 election

    Once Again—Death of the Liberal Class

    First paragraph:

    The presidential election exposed the liberal class as a corpse. It fights for nothing. It stands for nothing. It is a useless appendage to the corporate state. It exists not to make possible incremental or piecemeal reform, as it originally did in a functional capitalist democracy; instead it has devolved into an instrument of personal vanity, burnishing the hollow morality of its adherents. Liberals, by voting for Barack Obama, betrayed the core values they use to define themselves—the rule of law, the safeguarding of civil liberties, the protection of unions, the preservation of social welfare programs, environmental accords, financial regulation, a defiance of unjust war and torture, and the abolition of drone wars. The liberal class clung desperately during the long nightmare of this political campaign to one or two issues, such as protecting a woman’s right to choose and gender equality, to justify its complicity in a monstrous evil. This moral fragmentation—using an isolated act of justice to define one’s self while ignoring the vast corporate assault on the nation and the ecosystem along with the pre-emptive violence of the imperial state—is moral and political capitulation. It fails to confront the evil we have become.
  •  Yes, I am a liberal, still a liberal and always (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    greenbell, PSzymeczek

    will be a liberal.

    Why I should let people for whom I have no respect make me change what I call myself or feel ashamed of my beliefs? I totally agree with elrrp:


    Don't tell me youre going to put up a fight against conservatives if the first thing you do is allow them to define you and get you to change your name.

    You can't scare me, I'm sticking to the Union - Woody Guthrie

    by sewaneepat on Tue Feb 26, 2013 at 07:03:17 AM PST

    •  So true - I am liberal (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sewaneepat, PSzymeczek

      What is a progressive anyway?  Yesterday, I heard I think it was Chris Matthews or someone credit Republican Teddy Roosevelt with the progressive cause.

      No, it's FDR and RFK for my guiding lights and all the folks who marched for women's rights, labor rights, civil rights.  

      Balanced approach just doesn't do it for me.  

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