Review of

PragerU Video: Left or Liberal?

Our summary: Dennis Prager asserts that “Liberal” and “Left” have almost nothing in common. Liberals are fine; meanwhile, the Left is racial-segregationist and wants a world without borders. It is also opposed to capitalism, patriotism, free speech, and to protecting Western civilization.

Definitions as a tactic

John Martinez Raleigh, NC Published 22 Nov 2019

Michael Moore has articulated his own definitions of “Conservatives” versus “The Right,” where Conservatives have reasonable views (e.g. personal responsibility), and The Right is defined by every particular thing Moore despises about the Republican Party (e.g. prejudice, nativism, cruelty, rapaciousness, etc.) Some of Moore’s audience may like these definitions, but of course he is just making them up—no one else in academia or journalism uses or recognizes his definitions.

I’m kidding of course; Michael Moore has never done this. This is rather, what Dennis Prager is doing with his definitions of “Liberal” and “Left.” The Left, Prager tells us, is committed to racial segregation, is opposed to capitalism, advocates socialism, wants no national borders, wants to suppress free speech, and equates Western civilization with white supremacy. And it regards America as racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, violent, and imperialistic.

I wonder whether anyone could repeat Prager’s claim and (with a straight face) assert that it is a fact?

It must be admitted Democrats in the 1930s sneakily coopted the label “liberalism,” which was not previously a partisan term. Its classical meaning was indeed more about civil liberties and limited government. And, much to the annoyance of some conservatives, the association of the word “liberal” with the Democratic Party has stuck, even to this day.

Prager’s discourse raises more questions than it answers. Are there more Leftists or more Liberals? (E.g. Is it 50-50? 1-99? .001-99.999?) Why does Prager to feel it is so important to carefully distinguish between the two categories? Does Prager hope to take back the “liberal” label for Republicans?

A guess… Maybe he is worried about his videos alienating too many people who lean left, and so would like to drive a wedge between the far left and the center left. Maybe he recognized how insulting his past diatribes have been to left-leaners, and so he wants to say to them, “Hey, it’s not you, it’s those radicals!”

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