Righty: I’ve reached the conclusion that a moderate is just a liberal without a backbone. Of course, we never know what moderates really believe because they’re too jelly-legged to stand up and say anything worth remembering. At least Lefty knows the issues and can pack a good wallop. I suspect that the average moderate is just a namby-pamby quiche-eating yuppie who never thinks about anything more important than the newest trendy restaurant to open up in his neighborhood. You know why there are no political magazines for moderates? Because moderates don’t care about anything. Most of them probably don’t even know that they’re moderates — that’s how pathetically apathetic they are.
Lefty: The world must be coming to an end, Righty: I actually agree with you on this one! I might detest your views, but I admire your willingness to take a stand and debate it. Moderates? They’re bland, unenlightened political nonentities who are chronically oblivious to the world’s problems. Someone needs to wake them up with a good spray from the garden hose of reality.
The New Moderate:
I have to concede that Righty and Lefty make some painfully valid points. We moderates do need to wake up — fast. We need to rouse ourselves from indifference, come together and develop a coherent platform that can propel our ideas into the limelight. I’m tired of occupying a vacuum between the push and pull of extremist ideologies. I’m tired of getting no respect from the right or the left. If you’re a moderate, you should be tired of it, too.
Moderate ideas are the most lucid, the fairest, the most practical, the most sensitively reasoned, and the most representative of society as a whole. (That’s why I consider myself a moderate, and why I believe so fervently in our cause.) So why are we moderates, to this day, a vast and voiceless nothing between the two constantly flapping wings that dominate the public debate?
The majority of Americans characterize themselves as moderates. But where’s the passion, the camaraderie, the inspired rhetoric? Where’s the traffic on this site? Is anybody home?
Being a moderate means more than adding up the ideas of the right and left, and taking the average. It means being brave enough to stand up and shrug off the crossfire from the opposing trenches. It means being reckless and resolute enough to declare that, for example, the pro-life and pro-choice factions are both equally rigid and equally wrong… that the abortion issue will never be resolved until more nuanced and moderate minds prevail.
American culture has been dominated by dueling extremists since the McCarthy era, and the strife grew nastier than ever under the polarizing reign of Bush II. The U.S. has essentially split into two nations, red and blue, implacable and apparently irreconcilable. Why do we stand around and twiddle our thumbs? Thinking moderates everywhere owe it to themselves and their country to wake up and forge a radical middle that can influence public debate, win votes and stitch a sundered nation into the strong and happy union it was always meant to be.
Summary: Moderates have the best and fairest ideas, but nobody will know it until we form a movement to thrust those ideas into the public consciousness. Let the movement begin NOW.