Matt Brown, the Anti-Progressive?

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Some comments from Democrat gubernatorial candidate Matt Brown strike a curious chord, especially prefaced with WPRI reporter Ted Nesi’s characterization that it represents “a pitch based on science”:

“I think we need to remember, we know now from DNA studies, recent DNA studies from all around the world, that we actually all started out together,” he said. “There were as few as 1,000 of us, human beings, struggling to survive on the African savannah. And we did survive, and we went north and we went around the world.”

“But in the process, we found every possible way to divide ourselves against each other,” he continued. “We found race, we found religion, we found nationality, ethnicity, and politics. And so now we are divided, and that makes us powerless. … [W]e’re going to have to make sure that people recognize that now, because these problems are so big, that the only way to solve them is to find a way over these divides.”

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So, is Brown saying that he’s against identity politics and all of the left-wing policies that dice humanity up into ever-smaller groups and pit us against each other?  Or (far from being “based on science”) is this just the typical “Imagine” pablum about which the reader or listener is encouraged not to think too hard?



  • Mike678

    Perhaps the way “over these divides” is to demand equality of outcome? Except for those in charge, of course. This way of thinking is more in step with the current socialist-leaning “progressives.”

  • BasicCaruso

    A fundamental difference between the progressive left and the fringe right is WITT (we’re all in this together) vs. YOYO (you’re on your own).

    https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2018/may/21/christian-religious-left-william-barber-poor-peoples-campaign
    “There is no religious left and religious right,” Barber, a pastor and political leader in North Carolina, told the Guardian. “There is only a moral center. And the scripture is very clear about where you have to be to be in the moral center – you have to be on the side of the poor, the working, the sick, the immigrant.”

    Frustrated by conservative Christians’ focus on culture wars over issues such as abortion and gay marriage, Barber leads an ascendent grassroots movement that is trying to turn the national conversation to what they believe are the core teachings of the Bible: care for the poor, heal the sick, welcome the stranger.

    • Rhett Hardwick

      I have always wondered how they deal with Lot’s daughters getting him drunk in a cave and then getting themselves pregnant by him. Is there some kind of “core teaching” there?

    • Mike678

      A nice thought and and a great bumper sticker. But is it really either/or or perhaps a mix of both?

      As for your reference, Barber infers that the right isn’t interested in helping the poor. Another politically driven falsehood; you may want to research who in the US are the most charitable, but the issue is even deeper. Many on the left think taking care of the poor is giving them things–that has proven disastrous. The right goes more with “give a man a fish and he’ll eat for a day. Teach a man to fish and he’ll eat for a lifetime.” The left’s approach has failed, and created an even greater underclass–yet they continue to double down. Why is that?

      As for your WITT, IMHO it’s more “you will be in this together”; it’s a great excuse to borrow and raise taxes/fees to keep taking from the productive to buy votes. The end justifies the means and it’s the intent that counts, not the results. To ensure we all agree, wrong thinking will be punished and non-correct speech will be labeled “hate” speech and suppressed.

      Many on the right want to be able to think and do as they desire, not as told–as long as it isn’t against the law. It’s called freedom.

      • BasicCaruso

        Clearly a common philosophical difference here between left and right. Brown to his credit is speaking about common cause, while Justin true to form provides bad faith misinterpretation.

        http://inthesetimes.com/rural-america/entry/21158/american-poverty-income-inequality-civil-rights-poor-peoples-campaign

        As the government increasingly caters to the interests of the few rich and powerful rather than being accountable to the poor and marginalized majority, the Poor People’s Campaign reminds us of the ongoing and emerging movements that are compelling a change in our national priorities.

        During a time where America could not be more politically and economically polarized, it’s time to change the moral narrative in this country by coming together under moral clarity. We must shift the national conversation from “right versus left” to “right versus wrong.”

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