An open letter to Conservatives

Dear Conservatives,

You thought the state was your friend. You introduced the Marriage Act in 1961 and on some level that is understandable. The temptation to do so must have been irresistible. It centralised and standardised a definition of of marriage in Australia that reflected your own views and invalidated others that did not. The power of the State must have seemed wonderful when it was used to protect and expand your firmly held beliefs.

But soon the Marriage Law postal survey results will prove that the state can never be trusted. It is never your friend, it is never there to protect you. It’s power is amoral. It exists to be contested, fought over and used by the victors to validate their view of the world, just as you used it to validate yours. And soon that State will be further co-opted to introduce additional controls over the education of your children and your churches. You will naturally consider it unfair that the omnipotent power of the State can be used against you, and I will agree with you. But, do you expect others to feel sorry for you?

Well, you had no need to co-opt the State in 1961. You had what you wanted. Marriage was popular and your churches maintained control over who they could marry. But you got greedy, you used that popularity to try and force all people to adhere to your view. And at that point you stopped being Conservative, you stopped supporting your traditional institutions and you instead became coercive. You sought power and used force to try and impose your view of marriage on all. At that point you actually became what you now despise; Cultural Marxists.

Do I feel sorry for you? Certainly not, I blame you! You are complicit in introducing government coercion into institutions that the State has no business being in. The question for you now is, have you learnt your lesson? Do you truly understand that the power of the State is only ever temporarily in your hands and that if you want power now it will inevitably end up in your opponent’s hands later. Do you now understand that government is not your friend even when it’s imposing “the will of the people” on the minority. Finally, do you understand that small government, one that leaves individuals substantially alone, is the only political position consistent with being Conservative?

Yours sincerely

Andrew Cooper
President & founder
LibertyWorks Inc.

12 Comments on "An open letter to Conservatives"

  1. Tfw when supposed “conservatives” don’t even understand the Constitution of Australia.

  2. The state and its mechanisms range from being relatively benign obstacles to malignant monstrosities, squeezing the life out of the individual. People seem to rather like them.

  3. Great article. Clear, concise and, spot on!

  4. This open letter to conservatives is filled with the word “you” to address modern day conservatives like me personally. e.g.; “At that point you actually became what you now despise” in reference to the Marriage Act of 1961.

    People of voting age in 1961 when “conservatives” supported the Marriage Act are, at their very youngest, 74 years old in 2017. Most were born BEFORE World War Two and most of them have since died of old age.

    Yet this editorial is squarely directed, not to a few thousand octogenarians, but to millions of Australian adults who simply don’t identify in any way with the Robert Menzies era that pre-dates our birth.

    As a keen advocate of smaller Government and personal liberty I found you editorial weak and reeking of the left’s’ favourite persuasive trick ‘Presentism’

    Now I’m suspicious of your motives and you’ve lost my support. On that basis, I’m out

    • Good criticism.

    • Hi Andrew Cooper

      Its not for me or anyone else to create your argument for you. Perhaps you could have made the point “state power bad, individual freedom good” and explored that angle. Perhaps you could have explored the history or context of the 1961 act, and what you would have done differently.

      Instead this is a piece of creative writing poking fingers at people who were not alive at the time. Not quite sure what you are trying to achieve with this line of argument. Dave Walkerden’s criticisms seems fair enough.

    • I think you will find an overwhelming number of conservatives and LNP members are enamored by and strongly in favor of Menzies’ style of politics and ideological beliefs.

      Do you not identify with Menzies or consider him to be a conservative Dave Walkerden and Adam Ant?

    • Dave Walkerden Conservatives define themselves by sticking to uniting principles and institutions regardless of any modern day trends, do they not? So who isn’t a conservative? Menzies and his ilk who lead the introduction of the Act or you and your ilk, who seek to disassociate yourselves from those of that era? Which of you are true Conservatives?

    • Opposing Menzies, the conservative ideologue and traditional icon of Australia, seems like a rather unconservative thing to do….

      I thought the defining principle of conservatism was adhering to tradition and the principles of the past…..odd that a ‘conservative’ could then disagree with said past.

      This reminds me of the Thatcherite I met who doesn’t like Thatcher…

  5. What an idiotic viewpoint… sounds like he’s rustling the trees to get a reaction from someone so he can take them through the legal process now in play to support his ideals!
    Sounds to me like he’s running scared of the outcome of the poll.

  6. The Safe Schools boogeyman story doesn’t hold up at all when you actually read the content of the program and not just look at memes from concerned mother Facebook groups. Just enjoy the fact that restrictions are being eased and freedom is being extended to more Australians.

  7. Tough (but true) medicine. I can’t help but notice that many of my fellow conservatives who are (rightly) very concerned about the state using SSM to infringe on our freedom of speech and freedom of religion are the same “conservatives” who gleefully imposed the most draconian gun control on society, completely robbing us of the right to self-defence and massively restricting our unalienable right to keep and bear arms.

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