Denial Doesn’t Limit Government, Beat Science, or Win Elections.
Great column Ed. You articulated well about the differences between healthy skepticism and corrosive cynicism. The latter, if not tamed, can lead to misinformation in the form of disproven conspiracies and other flat out lies. And such misinformation has led to too many people disobeying common sense pandemic mitigation measures, and I believe that it is a major part of the reason the Covid-19 death toll here in the US is over 550k. Many on the right argue that because masks, social distancing, and other forms of pandemic mitigation aren't 100 percent foolproof, that it is proof in their eyes that it doesn't work. That kind of "100 percent or it doesn't work" is probably the most dangerous false dichotomy there is, IMO. Personal liberty does matter no doubt, and like you Ed I strongly support individual liberty as a libertarian leaning conservative. But we all know that without personal responsibility, liberty and freedom cannot flourish. In order for us to maintain a society premised on liberty, requires us as citizens to be responsible. Responsibility is also a fundamental tenet of conservatism, and its high time that all self-professed conservatives act as such.