I've watched day one of the Republican National Convention and now I'm really fired up. Now more than ever I'm committed to leveraging the resources of the Marketplace to ensure that our president, Barack Obama, is re-elected.
I had an interesting conversation with a friend who happens to be a conservative Republican. We debated for hours on the state of our country. In his opinion the Democrats are responsible for everything. I expected that response but when I pressed him by asking does the Republican Party have any culpability for where we are today he said "absolutely not". This started our next round of heated discussions until it became obvious that he was not going to give an inch or concede on any points.
What was really interesting about our conversation was that I now understand what the fundamental difference in philosophy is between my political views and the conservative Republicans, it's the difference between fair and equal.
Conservative Republicans feel that every American has an equal opportunity to be successful and enjoy the benefits of living in this country. They feel that it's a matter of choice not circumstance as the reason why people end up where they are in life. I challenged my friend by citing some conditions that refute his position; unemployment, poverty, taxes, and the elimination of social programs. His response was that equal and fair are two different things. His point was that this country is not meant to be fair, it's meant to provide an opportunity to be equal. Some people are going to rich and some people are going to be poor. There's going to be the have's and there's going to be the have-not's, that's the American way. Government has no obligation to help the have not's to become have's.
I cringed when I heard this. I immediately thought of Brown v. Board of Education, Roe v. Wade, The Voting Rights Act, and many others. This philosophy is why we must continue to fight for what is right. It is about fairness. i believe that you cannot have equality without fairness.
Yes, I'm fired up. I'm ready to rock and roll. We're going to make it happen and get it done.
Ernest R. Heyward is the Founder and President of the Marketplace for Social Awareness and Social Responsibility Inc.