Labels Are Important

Labels matter!

liberal-conservativeLabels Matter? You bet they do!

Especially since we judge everything around us by the labels that are popularly assigned to a subject, or a person.

Without labels…

  • We would never know what’s inside that can picked up at the grocery store
  • Nor would we guess what ingredients were used to make up the product in our hands
  • 87, 93, Diesel, E85, leaded, unleaded, 2 cycle, 4 cycle, synthetic
  • Top 1%, Poor, Middle Class, Rich
  • Conservative, Liberal, Republican, Democrat, Libertarian, Indpendent
  • etc…

Labels open up the world of understanding, only if you understand what that label constitutes. Labels help you gravitate toward the things you find important. The word to describe your likes and dislikes may not be to your liking, but at least it groups you into a camp of acceptance.

Currently we face the gambit of labels and if you fail to understand the ingredients that make up the labels then you may not be in the correct grouping.

For example, what does it mean to buy The Big Three? If you drive a car from another country then you do not support The Big Three which represents the original idea of USA automobile builders – you know, Ford, General Motors, Dodge. Now, I’ve owned all three of the Big Three and will generally only buy from one of these, but in the age of a global economy and society, parts may come from other countries design and production (think air bags). Still, it is important for me to support the concept of The Big Three. It’s more about the idea, but it can be about the product itself.

Alan Mulally became the CEO of Ford a few years back. He was picked up by a driver in a foreign vehicle, and when he went into the corporate parking garage – not a single Ford in sight. How can you work for a company and drive a vehicle that does not represent your brand? I suspect he changed the culture of Ford where you were proud to be driving a Ford product!

In my younger years I worked at a local steel plant for a few months. We were warned not to drive anything into the parking lot that had foreign steel because you may not be happy with what is done to your automobile by some who staunchly supported “Buy American”…

Since then we have migrated to buy by price and seldom consider the source. Of course, one of the Big Three networks (ABC, CBS, NBC) has started a campaign of honoring things “Made in America”. The pride and price of American is returning manufacturing from foreign shores to our shores!

I have grown weary of the labels of politics. Most of my votes have been drawn along party lines, because I fell into the camp that mirrored my own values. Occasionally, in local races, I may cross the party line because a candidate from another camp would do a better job – more experience, talent, heart and passion. Never have I done so with a candidate that would address the laws by which our country is governed, and hence it would affect the choices I make.

I am conservative on one hand, moderate on another, and if I had a third hand then there are some things I am liberal about. I believe in small government, fewer rules, and the sanctity of life. Our country was established free from tyranny and government not close to the people. A declaration of independence was written, signed and ratified. A constitution was written with a preamble states the purpose of the constitution:

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

The Bill of Rights came shortly thereafter to more deeply explain the rights of citizens, and are collectively defined as the first 10 amendments. These define our rights and protections as a citizen of our nation, and did not weaken the constitution. They were ratified in 1791… Over 200 years ago! It’s been a long time of growth and upgrade, but we know that we are for the most part better off than it was back then.

Still, our country has become polarized by labels. Democrats believe this, Republicans that, Libertarians have their own view, and within each major party you can be left or right, liberal or conservative. Or even in the middle. So many pieces of the puzzle that it’s often hard to know where someone stands, or what they truly believe. Name calling and labels are used to paint someone into one camp or another, further squeezing them to see which way they turn out to be.

Then, to top it off, we turn to our heroes and stars to determine for us which way to vote! As if they have insider knowledge that is better than what we can determine on our own! What gives? Are we lazy? Shiftless? Lead about by a ring in our nose?

Someone asked a Hollywood person to use his influence to get people out to vote. His response is very telling. We think it’s our duty and right to vote, but when we are not knowledgeable of all the labels being used and the foundation behind, then the masses might simply vote for a popular idea of the day – not understanding what it will do, or what it really means….Imagine a “Get Out The Vote” campaign being popularized enough that it puts the person into office that you could not follow! (Read More Here)

So. Here’s my label on the positions that have the power of directing the laws and direction of the country.

  • Conservative – one who adheres to traditional values – and I get to chose those values!
  • Republican – I like the way this article states it (Read Here)
  • Christian – Not just my religion but the way I decipher every issue and person I vote for

I’m sure there are other labels that would be placed on me by others, but these are the ones I’m comfortable with. Let me think about it for a while and I may add a few others!