The values that liberals push are the values of America. The things we support are the same things a majority of Americans support: National health care, higher taxes on billionaires, free college, a higher minimum wage, legal abortion, gay marriage, legalization of marijuana, “Black Lives Matter”, gun control, vaccinations — all have the support of a majority of our fellow Americans, poll after poll shows.
So why are we always fighting for these things?
Some of it is just history: Those with power have always, since the dawn of time, cheated to make sure they keep that power. No advancement has come about because of the Powerful’s humane caring for those beneath them. Everything we have gained has had to be fought for.
So how did we get here?
Mostly it’s the result of our system of government, which is by its nature not very democratic.
The Electoral College. When you start with a system that allows people who lose the popular vote to become President against the will of the people, you know you’re not in a truly democratic country. Our artificial borders place an emphasis on land instead of people and we end up with a system where the population of a dozen or so very sparsely populated states have more power than even a city. (More on why we need to get rid of the Electoral College here.)
The Senate. Similarly, Senators represent land, not people. No matter how small the state, they get two Senators. This means a Senator from Wyoming represents 286,000 people while one from California represents 19,500,000. Many times we’ve seen how the Senators from these smaller states have held up legislation the majority of Americans want simply because of the undemocratic way Senators represent our country.
The Supreme Court. Right now, there are more people on the Supreme Court who were appointed by Presidents who lost the popular vote than justices who were appointed by those who won. (And once more let’s remind everyone that Democrats won the popular vote in 7 of the last 8 elections — spanning 32 years — but only won 5 of them, thanks to the Electoral College.) So when an issue about voting or gerrymandering or democracy comes before this undemocratically-appointed Court (approved by an undemocratic Senate), you can guess what their decision will be.
Gerrymandering. Admittedly, some Democrats have practiced this as well, where lines are drawn to benefit one party over another. This can be done in such a way that even though your party may be the minority one, if you get to draw the lines, you can make sure you get more of your party into power anyway.
Voter suppression. Republicans (who hold the minority viewpoint in America) know they will always lose if everyone votes, so their strategy has always been simple: Let’s change our views to appeal to a majority of Americans! I’m kidding, of course. Their strategy is instead: Let’s cheat to make sure we always win. That’s why they have spent 50 years
- fighting against the Voting Rights Act
- purging people from voting lists
- closing precincts in minority neighborhoods
- enacting restrictive voter ID laws
- prohibiting felons from voting
- stopping early voting and mail-in ballots
- making sure election day isn’t a national holiday
- killing any bill designed to prevent Russian interference
- making sure no paper ballots are used
- getting rid of election finance laws
- making it illegal to even give drinks to people standing in line to vote
- fighting against abolishing the electoral college
- promoting gerrymandering
- lying about voter fraud
There are even tapes of them admitting it. It’s not like it’s a secret. And come on, Trump is still claiming he actually won the election, despite more than 50 lawsuits being thrown out when absolutely no evidence was produced to support this insane conspiracy theory.
So yeah, those of us who represent the majority of Americans have huge hurdles to overcome to fight against the minority power controlling us. And that’s why it seems to many that our views are the unpopular ones, since we lose constantly.
But the real reason is much more complicated and much harder to resolve.