What Do Liberalism and Conservatism Mean? (Identifying differences (One…
What Do Liberalism and Conservatism Mean?
The definition of these words has changed since they first came into the use in the early nineteenth century.
At that time
a person favored freedom from the controls and powers of the state
a person favored instead restoring the power of the state, the church, and the aristocracy.
Meanings begin to change
Begin around the time of Franklin Roosevelt and the New Deal in 1932
The opponents of an active national government began using the term conservative to describe themselves
conservative favored a free market
favored states’ rights over national supremacy and greater reliance on individual choice in economic affairs
Roosevelt used the term liberal to refer to his political program
called for an active national government that would intervene in the economy and create social welfare programs
liberals favored laws guaranteeing equal opportunity among the races
conservatives opposed American intervention abroad
liberals favor “affirmative action”plans
conservatives believe the United States should play an active role in foreign affairs
In spite of their ambiguities ,they remain in general use and convey some significant meaning
They point to real differences
One way to clarify the difference is to consider how self-described liberals and conservatives differ in their opinions on prominent issues,
government policy with regard to the economy
Civil rights and race relations
Public and political conduct