There is common charge made against Republicans and Conservatives that we are the ones who are creating the ideological divide that is now so deep in America. However, we have to look at this in a historical context in order to really see how it is liberals that have changed their ideology, creating the divide, not conservatives. If John F. Kennedy were alive today, he would be a member of the republican party. I can prove this to you with excerpts from John F. Kennedy's inaugural address.
"We dare not tempt [our adversaries] with weakness. For only when our arms are sufficient beyond doubt can we be certain beyond doubt that they will never be employed.."
This is exactly what President Bush believes, yet President Obama does not speak in these terms. He, instead uses language like:
"Recall that earlier generations faced down fascism and communism not just with missiles and tanks, but with sturdy alliances and enduring convictions. They understood that our power alone cannot protect us, nor does it entitle us to do as we please. Instead, they knew that our power grows through its prudent use; our security emanates from the justness of our cause, the force of our example, the tempering qualities of humility and restraint. "
The language is aimed to create a feeling, instead of making a statement. The examples of changes like this that have occurred on the left are legion. Dr. Martin Luther King is another example of a figure that is revered by democrats, but have thrown many of his values under the bus that Rosa Parks rode in on. To exemplify this point, here is a quote from a sermon of Dr. King - it is necessary to read the thought in it's entirety to fully understand the impact of what Dr. King was saying.
"I want to deal with one or two of these mighty precious values that we've left behind, that if we're to go forward and to make this a better world, we must rediscover.
The first is this—the first principle of value that we need to rediscover is this: that all reality hinges on moral foundations. In other words, that this is a moral universe, and that there are moral laws of the universe just as abiding as the physical laws. (Lord help us) I'm not so sure we all believe that. We never doubt that there are physical laws of the universe that we must obey. We never doubt that. And so we just don't jump out of airplanes or jump off of high buildings for the fun of it—we don't do that. Because we unconsciously know that there is a final law of gravitation, and if you disobey it you'll suffer the consequences—we know that. Even if we don't know it in its Newtonian formulation, we know it intuitively, and so we just don't jump off the highest building in Detroit for the fun of it—we don't do that. Because we know that there is a law of gravitation which is final in the universe. (Lord) If we disobey it we'll suffer the consequences.
But I'm not so sure if we know that there are moral laws just as abiding as the physical law. I'm not so sure about that. I'm not so sure if we really believe that there is a law of love in this universe, and that if you disobey it you'll suffer the consequences. (Yes) I'm not so sure if we really believe that. Now at least two things convince me that we don't believe that, that we have strayed away from the principle that this is a moral universe. (Lord help him)
The first thing is that we have adopted in the modern world a sort of a relativistic ethic. Now I'm not trying to use a big word here; I'm trying to say something very concrete. And that is that we have accepted the attitude that right and wrong are merely relative to our . . . [recording interrupted]
Most people can't stand up for their convictions, because the majority of people might not be doing it. (Amen, Yes) See, every body's not doing it, so it must be wrong. And since everybody is doing it, it must be right. (Yes, Lord help him) So a sort of numerical interpretation of what's right"
If anyone in the American Civil Liberties Union (an organization dominated by the left) has ever read this sermon of Dr. King, they certainly do not live up to his values. For example, the ACLU threatened the county of Los Angeles with a lawsuit if they did not remove a tiny cross from it's seal. The weak city council members caved to the ACLU, and ordered the cross removed, and replaced with a Spanish Mission with no cross:
The absurdity of this example is remarkable. The centerpiece of the seal is the Goddess Pomona. Yet, the ACLU had no problem with this religious symbol. It is an obvious attempt to eradicate any semblance of Christian history from our lives. This is divisive.
It is my belief that the accusations that are levied at the right from the left are the result of a psychological phenomenon known as projection.(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psychological_projection). An example of the left's use of projection is when they accuse the right of being intolerant, but in fact, the left is far more intolerant than the right. The ACLU was intolerant of a tiny cross that had been there since the seal's inception. Those who support imposing the "Fairness Doctrine" which would require that opinion media give equal time to issues on both the left and the right are intolerant - because they would never offer the same amount of time from conservatives on the front page of the New York Times, CBS, ABC, NBC, or College Campuses, all of which fall almost uniformly left of center on any social issue. Of course their argument is that these mediums are not "opinion media" and everything that they report is fully objective. It is not difficult to prove that there is a left-leaning slant in virtually every major news outlet in America.
Are there divisive people on the right? Of course there are. Michael Savage may share many of my values, but the man is a jerk, and quite frankly, a very unhappy man. Unhappy conservatives should stop being conservative. They do nothing to help my cause, and America would be a better place if he were replaced with more kind and well-adjusted talk show hosts like Dennis Prager, Michael Medved, Mike Gallagher, and Hugh Hewitt. And, no, my leader is not Rush Limbaugh. Again, I may agree with many of his values, but he is arrogant and cynical. Not helpful for espousing my values.
Perhaps it is these few voices that are so loud that fuel the fire that conservatives are divisive. I would invite those on the left to listen to William Kristol, Charles Krauthammer, Larry Elder, Dennis Prager, and other voices of reason to learn about conservatives. Then, it may become clear that when American values are defended, it is not divisive, it is necessary to maintain America as the beacon of hope and opportunity that it is viewed as around the world.