Don’t Let the American Right Redefine Radicalism
The concept of the Overton Window isn't widely known by the general public, but it affects the way they perceive the world's problems and their possible solutions just the same. The concept is based on the range of ideas the average person would be willing to either accept or refuse, and whether these could successfully be turned in winning policies. For example, legalization of marijuana seemed like science fiction in the 80s, but its reality decades later is proof of the Overton Window shifting towards liberalism when it comes to drug policy. But in which direction is the window shifting in contemporary matters of life and death?
Whether it's healthcare, climate change, or immigration, there's no reason why we should let bad faith actors with vested interests in the status quo keep defining what's moderate or radical, especially considering that the status quo is extremist levels of corporate greed. Though I'm seeing much feigned concern over whether Democrats are moving too far left, but little to no concern regarding how corporate interests are superseding public interests in increasingly violent ways. Whoever controls the language controls the dialogue, and it's time that we take both back.
It's time to stop referring to universal healthcare as socialist when America is the only country in the G7 without it. Universal healthcare is ideal, and Medicare-for-All is actually a very moderate proposal. It's our for-profit system that kills and bankrupts ppl by the thousands that's extremist. This is especially true when considering that United States per capita healthcare spending is more than twice the average of other developed nations. Despite this, one-third of all GoFundMe campaigns in the US are to mitigate medical debt. In the US, health insurance executives receive millions in annual bonuses, while one in four diabetics ration their insulin due to its high cost.
It's time to stop talking about the cost of climate action and start talking about the cost of climate inaction. Tackling this years ago would've been ideal, and a green new deal is actually moderate. It's allowing global catastrophe for corporate profits that is an extremist position. This is especially true when considering that in 2018 alone, the US sustained $91 billion in costs related to climate-related disasters, including tropical cyclones, inland floods, severe storms, droughts, and wildfires. All while major polluters spend ten times more on lobbying Congress than green groups.
It's time to stop letting those who are afraid of changing demographics define how we talk about immigration. Seeking asylum is legal, undocumented immigrants don't cause more crime, and they pay taxes. It's locking up separated families to enrich private prisons that's extremist. This is especially true when considering that undocumented immigrants pay billions per year in federal, state, and local taxes—much of it for services that they'll never be able to use such as social security, medicare, and more.
Profiteers would have you believe that the status quo is moderate. But what's ‘moderate’ if wanting to leave a habitable planet for your kids is considered radical? What's ‘moderate’ if not wanting people to die for a CEO's bonus is considered radical? It certainly isn't right.