Letters to the Editor

Viewpoint: Conservatism — the new activism

Calling all conservatives: It is now safe to leave the trenches.

President Barack Obama has been in office for almost a year now and has had enough time to show himself. Obama-mania has ultimately puttered out, and we can finally speak without having to duck.

For the last two years (and probably longer), the word “conservative” has been a real conversation killer. During the last presidential campaign, we had to watch our words to avoid getting attacked by Obama fanatics. And even through 2009, we have had to sit through the blame game of liberal politics. According to the Obama administration and our liberal Congress, President George Bush ruined our country and we have to give Obama time to fix it.

Well, a year has just about come and gone, and politics as usual has resumed in the White House.

And while all of this has happened, the conservative movement has only prospered. Now why am I discussing conservatism as a college student? Aren’t all college campuses supposed to embrace liberal ideology and be the most forceful proponents of liberalism? Well, this media-induced image is utterly false — especially during this critical time in our nation’s history.

Conservatism is more than just an ideology; it is a movement to bring our country back to the basic principles upon which it was founded.

And believe it or not, we all have a little conservatism at our core. Otherwise, we, as students, would not be taking the time to further our education. We all believe in individual rights and the responsibilities that go along with them. We are all attending a university with the incentive of receiving a fulfilling career some time after graduation. Conservatism is about relying upon your own abilities for success and not depending on others to hand it to you. And we all fall under this category.

What ever happened to “sustainability”? This may have been the only word that beat out “Obama” in campuswide popularity over the last couple of years. Cal Poly emphasizes this principle within almost every area of study. But what about sustainable politics? As our nation’s future leaders, we are encouraged to analyze ways to achieve long-term efficiency. Now ask yourselves: Can the government keep bailing out Wall Street? Can the government keep supporting millions of Americans on welfare year after year? And finally, can the government handle a nationwide health care system that would impact every single American?

Sure, America does not have a perfect system, but the government can only be as capable as those who are elected to office. And believe me, our problems did not start with George W. Bush. Even Paul Krugman, a New York Times economics columnist and diehard liberal, admits that several factors attributed to this inevitable decline — factors that have been in play before Bush ever took office. Nonetheless, I think we can all agree that we can’t depend on the government for everything.

During these harsh times, we must all (students and nonstudents) look beyond the simplicity of clichéd liberal expressions and recall the long-term success of conservative policy. Take a moment to look within yourself and analyze your own values and seek the truth. This is the only way to redeem our glorious nation.

Brendan Pringle is a Cal Poly sophomore and member of the Cal Poly College Republicans and a columnist for the Mustang Daily.