Sadly, by “ultimate,” I mean “potentially last.”
Leo, our glorious leader, is having trouble finding hosts. And, the Carnival is suffering from the general malaise which has, lately, plagued the middle-tiers of the progressive blogosphere. Although there’ll always be a place for blogs like Kos, ThinkProgress, Wonkette, TPM, Crooks & Liars, etc., a number of small and mid-range blogs (like this one) found their voices in the day-by-day outrages of the Bush administration and, with his fading, have seen their traffic fade as well.
This blog will not close today, nor anytime soon. But others have, and still more have stopped submitting. So, it’s time to take stock. I strongly believe that there is a place for mid-range blogs like this one, and those whose submissions power each “Carnival of the Liberals.” We fill niches that generalist blogs like the much-loved powerhouses noted above cannot, or do not. As an aggregation tool, then, I find Carnival of the Liberals indispensable. But if there is another way to bring our voices together, perhaps we should explore it, or rediscover this one. Hosts, frequent readers, please leave your thoughts on this thread.
That said, I give you this latest edition, premised on the basic question, “what does the American promise mean to you?” As July 4th approaches, and the nation’s 233rd year begins, we owe it to ourselves to remind each other and the American populace at large that liberal ideals, like progress and equality, are what brought this nation into being, and those same liberal ideals are what sustains it. Like our founding generation, we embrace the future, rather than shirking from it. So, what does America mean to you?
- TRUTH. Earlier this year, the Supreme Court continued its move rightward by sharply restricting a defendant’s right to introduce potentially exculpatory DNA evidence. How can we as a nation defend justice to a watching world, when we refuse to seek it out ourselves? (via the always excellent “Scientist, Interrupted”)
- COMPASSION. When we rush to condemn missionaries, we’re missing some of the point; but when the rest of the world lauds them, they’re missing the entire damn thing. (via Greg Laden)
- HONESTY. Sex ed works. Abstinence doesn’t. The anti-gay lobby lies about both, and more. These are the facts. (via “Winter Harvest”)
- INTEGRITY. “Socialized” health care is neither socialized, nor… wait. It is health care. And good health care, at that! Don’t let people misrepresent the experience of other countries to the contrary. (via “Staring at Empty Pages”)
- FREEDOM – EVEN TO ERR. In the battle against oppression, we should avoid becoming the oppressors, ourselves. Hence, don’t ban the burka — but don’t encourage a submissive, anti-feminist mindset, either. (via Russel Blackford)
- COMEDY. God bless any nation that permits – even encourages! – the mockery of its leaders. Oh, and Rush Limbaugh. In limerick form. (via “Mad Kane”)
- ACTIVISM. When we celebrate the birth of the gay rights movement, we’re celebrating what was, essentially, a riot. Take from that what you will. (via Greta Christina)
- FAMILY VALUES. Never let anyone tell you that “liberals” hate “family values.” (via the inimitable PalMD, leading, as always, by example)
- MORALITY. Real morality compels acceptance, not suspicion and hate. (via “TUIB Guy,” now with moar Pres. Bartlet!)
- THE RULE OF LAW. Strange, isn’t it, that “judicial activism” is a virtue, not a sin, when engaged in by conservative jurists? (via… me!)
I hope this isn’t the last Carnival of the Liberals. We’ve done excellent things together, all submitters and bloggers, past, present, and future. Now is not the time to stop. We won an election, yes, but as a great man once said — “break’s over.” Get back to writing, hosting, and submitting!
And, as always –
A very happy Fourth of July!