When I was younger, I used to be on the far left. In another timeline, I’m probably the male Joy Reid. Now, I’m somewhere between Destiny and Tim Pool on the political spectrum— according to my political compass, I’m either libertarian-left or a libertarian fence-sitter. I have gone from being a race-obsessed/borderline socialist leftist to blind conservative. Now, I am back to the middle of the spectrum, though still with libertarian leanings.
I left the extreme left after listening to Ben Shapiro– which inspired me to join the UT Austin TPUSA chapter. My experience with the people in that chapter left much to be desired, and I laughed when the old chapter was dissolved. I later joined the Young Conservatives of Texas. Even though I got along with a lot of them and found some common ground on a lot of issues, I realized I was not a “conservative.” It turns out I was just skeptical that the federal government could solve all the problems in the US. When it came to social issues, I started to understand different viewpoints on issues such as abortion and gun rights. However, when it came to abortion, I realized I don’t really care whether someone has one or not. I’m not a “birthing person” so I never had to worry about it. When it came to gun rights, my opinion became “I don’t care what gun you own as long as you don’t point it at me or other people.” Also, I think any support I had for gun control burned with the buildings during the summer of 2020, as more people started buying guns for self defense. As it turns out, I’m more of an individualist than I thought.
I can understand why people are collectivists. But after seeing how spoiled this generation has become, and playing Persona 5, I can’t sympathize with it anymore. Take the COVID vaccine mandate controversy for example. The CDC director said that the vaccines don’t prevent transmission anymore which makes the mandates pointless to me. That’s not to say that people shouldn’t get the vaccine– as it prevents deaths and serious hospitalization (especially before the more mild omicron came around.) So, while people say “get vaccinated for your family,” I think what should be said is “make sure your family is vaccinated.” I got three shots ( these are the only ones I intend to get unless new evidence or data suggests I need more) so I do not think that I’m going to be dying of COVID anytime soon, but that’s me protecting myself. My grandparents and parents are vaccinated, yet some of them had breakthrough cases, but, statistically, they are unlikely to face any serious symptoms from COVID. Others may choose not to get vaccinated, even if they lack natural immunity, but I’m not worried about those people because my family is fine. However, I can’t go along with the mass hysteria that governments across the country are trying to force down people’s throats (even though I am immune to the mandates now.) I don’t care if the conservatives don’t want to get vaccinated because I am protected. But having this mindset is what divides me and my more conservative friends.
Conservatives are collectivists in their own way. I watched a debate between the interns at the Cato Institute (libertarians) and the Heritage Foundation (conservatives). I realized that conservatives are sometimes willing to use the federal government to enforce their own beliefs on people, such as with the drug war and marriage. That’s even more obvious with some of these parents wanting to ban what they call “CRT” in public schools from being taught. My personal opinion on that can come another day. In many states, the current sex education structure mostly advocates for abstinence (which is the best way to prevent unwanted pregnancy) and teaches about STDs. However, considering how easy it is to access porn and other sexual content on the internet, I don’t think that is working out. I am not a fan of the modern hookup culture and I don’t see it leading to a better society, but I can’t ban things like that because it will create soft authoritarianism–which will get worse over time. On the same note, I also think it is nonsensical to pay for elective birth control or elective abortion with public funds because it is not the fault of society if a “birthing person” gets pregnant from consensual sex. I also don’t buy that people in 2022 don’t know what a condom is, or don’t know where babies come from.
I think that if conservatives had their way, society will be way too repressed and kids will run the risk of lashing out. However, the current collectivist generation is no better in my opinion. Some of my conservative friends say libertarianism leads to degeneracy, and I haven’t completely tossed that out. This generation has gone back to caring way too much about race and some have adopted a twisted form of white supremacy. However, rather than being malevolent like the architects of Jim Crow, they are “benevolent” white saviors. It got so stupid that states like California put on their ballot whether or not they can repeal their civil rights law. Luckily it was defeated, but the fact that it got that far worries me. I don’t think this is something that the modern conservatives like the Daily Wire are responsible for. According to a Yale study from 2018, white “liberals” present themselves as “less competent” in interactions with people of color while white conservatives do not. I don’t think this is a result of teaching kids about slavery. I mean Barack Obama won the presidency twice despite running against two of the “whitest” candidates to run for President. I think this is the issue of people not having a solid moral framework and are just obsessed with self-righteousness–this applies to the modern left as well as conservatives. That’s part of the reason I’ve adopted my libertarian-Esque viewpoint. I am not an anarchist, but I can’t go along with a system that forces people into a collective like what the federal government will become if they centralize too much power. I want to live life for me and live it my way. I will (legally) crush anything that gets in my way. If my freedom requires others to have freedom (or leads to cultural and societal decay), then so be it.