History shows progressive changes improve lives

In a Nov. 29 letter about political cartoons, the letter writer states that Democrats only have one play in their book – demonizing the right.

Ironically, political cartoons often depict reality and aren’t simply lampooning one party or another. Both parties have their shortfalls, but it is true, many Republicans have attacked minorities, gays, the poor, women, health care and science in recent years.

The letter writer states John F. Kennedy’s ideology was the same “almost to the letter” as today’s Republican Party and blames liberal educators for brainwashing our youth. JFK was a centrist, but was also progressive, wanting to move our country past the challenges we faced at the time, such as civil rights.

Conservatives in both parties opposed civil rights in addition to passing laws banning mixed-race marriages.

The Supreme Court deemed these laws unconstitutional in the 1960s, similar to its recent ruling on gay marriage. The recent gay marriage debate in Hawaii illustrates the Republican ideology in action, arguing to deny our gay ohana the right to marry. In the end, it passed and the world didn’t end.

I’d like to think JFK would have seen the truth that everyone has the right to marry as well as everyone deserves civil rights. Maybe the letter writer is right and I’m just “lost in today’s leftist ideology” and will never get it. Sorry, I don’t think so. It’s progressive changes over the history of our country which have improved the lives of Americans who need it most.

James Therrian