Welcome to the Tirades of a Liberal. . Mmm-wha-ha-ha-ha-ha! Are you scared yet?Some people are afraid of liberal opinions. If you’re not used to hearing what you don’t want to hear, welcome to democracy. It may seem a little strange at first, but you’ll get used to it.Many people just want to hear what they want to hear and what they want to hear is the word liberal used like a dirty word. It’s not a dirty word. In fact, if you can answer yes to any one of the following questions, YOU MAY BE A LIBERAL!1. Are you open-minded and tolerant?2. Are you free from prejudice and bigotry?3. Do you seek nonviolent solutions to problems?4. Do you believe in protecting civil liberties?5. Are you generous or charitable?6. Do you favor progress or reform in politics or religion?7. Do you permit freedom of action with regard to personal beliefs?8. Do you believe in maximizing individual freedoms?9. Do you believe in representational forms of government?10. Are you befitting a freeman?If you answered yes to 1 or 2 questions, you may be a closet liberal. If you answered yes to 3 to 5 questions, you may be a light-switch liberal. If you answered yes to 6 to 8 questions, you may be a left-wing liberal. If you answered yes to 9 or more questions, duck, you’re a lightning-rod liberal.If you answered no to all 10 questions, you are a close-minded, intolerant, prejudiced bigot. You are a reactionary who seeks violent solutions to problems. You don’t believe in civil liberties and you are against reforming what is wrong in politics and religion. You are stingy and niggardly. You don’t believe in letting others express their beliefs. You believe individual freedoms should not be tolerated and you prefer aristocracies and monarchies over democracy. Finally, you are not befitting a freeman. You are the anti-liberal. Congratulations.Hmmm. All of a sudden it doesn’t seem so bad to be a liberal, does it? Look it up in the dictionary if you don’t believe me. Then, you might want to ask yourself why you thought being liberal was such a bad thing.And speaking of anti-liberals and things people don’t want to hear about, did anyone catch U.S. Sen. Wayne Allard’s comments in the Sunday paper? He didn’t want to hear about depleted uranium so he turned down an opportunity to watch a video to learn about the potential harmful effect of the radioactive element. “I’m a scientist,” he declared. He then denied a request to look at fresh evidence which refuted the “predominant view of the scientific community.”I used to think scientists gained knowledge through observation and experimentation. I was wrong.Evidence, schmevidence. The radiation from depleted uranium is safe, according to scientist Allard. Whew, what a relief.In the first Gulf War, we detonated and left behind about 40 tons of depleted uranium all across Iraq and Kuwait. In the three years following that war, the cancer rates in Iraq increased 700 percent. It’s nice to know it was all one big coincidence. If more scientists like Allard would accept the predominant scientific view instead of conducting fresh experiments, we’d all save a lot of time. … The world would still be flat … but we’d save a lot of time.The final element of my tirade for this day concerns the letters to the editor pages. It gladdened my heart to see so many of you accept the invitation to free speech. Isn’t democracy wonderful? The letters showed me we all have more in common than we might think.Richard Doran stated, “I am opposed to every form of violence, except for war when it is justified to eliminate suppression and to bring about freedom.” See Nos. 3 and 8 in the Liberal Questionnaire.Lynn Shore said, “I am prepared mentally, physically and with appropriate armament to defend your right to opine in any media of your choice.” See No. 7.Bob Anderson stated, “Thursday was a victory for Iraq, for America, and for freedom.” See No. 8, Bob.Cynthia Thomas declared, “I can say this to Bernie because I live in America and have freedom of speech, but guess what, so does Bernie Boettcher!” See Nos. 4, 7 and 10.Brian Fulton was feeling his liberal roots when he said, “I, for one, very much appreciate every citizen’s right to freedom of speech, and wish you would have an article by Bernie on a daily basis.” Mr. Fulton, you’re making me blush. See Nos. 1, 4, 5, 7, 8 and 10.Mr. Fulton was also correct in pointing out an error in my last column. My original copy said, “Only two countries are aiding the United States militarily, Britain with 45,000 troops and Australia with 5,000 troops.” The right-wing conspirators at GSPI plotted against me and changed 45,000 to 5,000. Either that or someone made a typographical error. You decide.My apologies for the error, it was wrong.Liberally,BernieBonus liberal thought especially for Kathryn Preston and Ann & Jay Wells: “Never do anything against conscience even if the state demands it.” – Albert EinsteinSilt resident Bernie Boettcher’s column runs every other Thursday in the Post Independent. He should buy a typewriter that has an operable “4” key.
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