by Sam Buntz
I’ve been calling myself a liberal for awhile, but “conservative” is actually probably a better label for my inner nature—despite my strong liberalism on most social issues (particularly LGBTQ Rights) and, I guess, on some economic issues too (I have no real knowledge about economics). Yet, the innermost sanctuary of my Self was constructed in a very definite shape: Square. (Maybe the fact that I still use the term “square” is itself strong evidence of this?) I’m a conservative in a sort of mental and emotional character-based way, as opposed to a political way, and also insofar as I strongly resent the implication many collegiate liberals make, that you need to get really into leather or open-relationships if you ultimately want to help “The Cause.”
Of course, I support medical marijuana and a goodly amount of decriminalization, but I have no interest in drugs (except for the caffeine included in Irish Breakfast Tea), absolutely no interest in going to crazy street fairs where they sell lots of whips and things, am heterosexual and fundamentally monogamous in a possibly boring way, and used to wear a lot of lame sweaters, in addition to being preoccupied with some fairly stodgy religious concerns (they may get mystical, but are decidedly not freaky). Even though I’m not an Episcopalian or Presbyterian (or even an orthodox Christian of any acknowledged variety), I believe most people would be better off if they were.
Also, this isn’t inherently conservative, but I really dislike loud bars—in a manner rather akin to that of the unsavory crowd of bow-tie wearing Young Republican weirdoes, who sit around smoking gigantic pipes and wishing it was the British Raj or whatever (which I don’t do), I regularly fantasize about a nice quiet pub with no music, where you can just sit down, and have a nice boring conversation about PBS documentaries (though that last part sounds pretty liberal, indeed). Apparently, there’s a novelty bar in Brooklyn based on this concept—so maybe liberals are actually more into it, in the end.
And, again, to re-iterate: I don’t believe in free love—love should be in chains, thanks. But not literal chains—again, that’s starting to sound like more ultra-liberal S&M talk. Also, in the final analysis, I really strongly disapprove of the Academic Reds who think you can substitute Allen Ginsberg for Shakespeare and magically levitate the Pentagon with nude, Shamanic rituals and all that kind of stuff.
Basically, what makes me so secretly conservative, is that, at the end of the day, I believe you need to buy into an idea of order. You can’t live your life gleefully making confetti out of other people’s graph paper, wallowing around in your own personal chaos—you’re supposed to do that in your head, not in the actual world. The tramp-Kerouac persona is utterly distasteful to all right-thinking people—and people who adopt it for more than their first two years of college are probably hitch-hiking serial killers. As far as being a Square goes, having four sides really grants you a good, even abundant amount of personality—if you start to have too many sides, being excessively open-minded about opium pipes shaped like hobbits and the collected poetic works of Maya Angelou, your character morphs under the conflicting pressures of an unwieldy emotional and mental promiscuity. And that starts to look like having no sides, which, in Nature, is best conveyed by the appearance of that particular form of matter we call “slush”.