All too often, people get the impression that liberals are just crazy liberal types with nothing to back up their ideologies. People perceive liberals as being high-spending big city dwellers who enjoy spending hours in coffee shops talking about politics.
In fact, there’s more than one person out there who fits that description. However, these individuals are not only politically left, but they also don’t hold much respect for capitalism.
It is important to remember that while most liberals aren’t conservative Republicans, neither are most conservatives true democrats.
There are some similarities between both groups, however. For example, both tend to be open minded and socially conscious. Just because someone doesn’t agree with your political views does not mean they don’t like you!
This article will talk about two more specific traits of liberalism which are having an increasingly prominent presence across America today. These qualities are civic nationalism and cultural populism.
The city of Philadelphia is very liberal
While not as well-known as New York or Chicago, Philadelphia has always been seen as a more open and welcoming city than some others. This perception comes from many things, including its rich history as one of the most powerful cities in America, and the way it has maintained an extremely diverse population.
Philadelphia was first settled by Europeans over 500 years ago, but it wasn’t until the late 18th century that it became an important trading center for both goods and people. At this time, it attracted immigrants looking to start new lives with opportunities to thrive.
Since then, there have been various waves of immigration to the city, along with significant outmigration. Some of these groups included Germans after World War II, Italians during the Great Migration, Eastern European Jews before and after World War II, and Latin Americans since the 1980s. All of these cultures left their marks on the city, making it a vibrant place today.
Another reason why Philadelphians are considered to be more open-minded is due to the city’s political climate. Many politicians in Philly refer to themselves as liberals, which means they typically focus on providing services to individuals and communities that need them.
These services include free health care, tuition at universities, and low-income programs like food stamps and housing assistance. One example of a service provided through government funding is public transportation, such as buses and trolleys.
Pittsburgh is also very liberal
Liberals love to talk about how diverse, rich, and vibrant their communities are, but they rarely tell you that truth about one of your biggest cities.
In fact, one could make an argument that it’s not only conservative, but actually quite regressive in some ways.
One doesn’t have to look too hard at all to find examples of why this is the case. A quick stroll down “diversity” street will reveal plenty.
If you want more proof, then just take a look at the list of things that The Political Compass has to offer.
You got lots of options for lefty politics here! (And we mean that as a compliment.) But what does each option represent?
Well, social liberals believe in strong government regulation, labor unions, and redistributionist programs such as universal health care.
Economic liberals prioritize lower taxes over bigger government, and be wary of big spending projects like building new roads or running welfare programs.
Libertarians value individuals over groups, and strive for limited government interference in people’s lives. And conservatives emphasize personal responsibility and respect for authority.
Now, none of these ideologies is necessarily bad nor good, pure evil even. In fact, many politicians fall into at least one category.
But if you’re looking to live in a city where everyone seems to agree with each other, well, you might be in luck soon.
The state is very Democratic
Let’s take a look at some numbers to prove our point!
The most recent election for Governor was in 2018 when Democrat Tom Wolf defeated Republican incumbent Jim Cawley. Since then, Democrats have won every statewide race (governor, senate, house) with only one close call (senate seat that went to Republicans by just over 2% margin).
Democrats currently hold majorities in both houses of the legislature along with having control of all three branches of government. In addition to governor, they also have complete control of the state Senate and House, as well as majority supermajorities in both chambers of the General Assembly.
This means that even if Republicans win back either chamber or the governorship, there will be little chance of any major policy changes being passed into law. All party leaders work effectively together towards this goal!
Another important fact about elections in PA is how much money is spent on them. According to Ballotpedia, in 2006 gubernatorial candidates collectively spent $176 million dollars which included TV ads, direct mail campaigns, and traveling to out-of-state events.
There are a lot of liberal groups in the state
Many people consider Pennsylvania to be a conservative state, but there are actually lots of ways that it is not!
Pennsylvania has many opportunities for liberals to get involved in politics. You do not have to work in political offices or run for elected positions to make an impact here.
There are several well-established activist groups in your area that strive to improve communities by promoting literacy, helping out with charities, and more.
Politics is a very strong tool that can be used for good or bad. If you would like to help create change in our country, then getting into the field of politics is one of the best things you can do.
People think of Pennsylvania as very liberal
But looking at the state in depth, it is not quite that way yet. Sure, there are lots of liberals here, but they can be outnumbered by conservatives just like anywhere else.
Pennsylvania has been described as a “blue” state since before anyone really knew what that meant. Since then, it has become one of America’s most famous red states.
Governor Tom Wolf made waves earlier this year when he vetoed a bill to allow sports betting. He said such wagering would hurt college athletes who rely on their hard-earned money to fuel dreams of professional stardom.
But aside from gambling, few other markers exist for how liberal or conservative a state is. This is because political ideologies are more about values than policies.
What are liberals and conservatives actually opposed to?
Some ideas that have been used to define liberals and conservatives are things like healthcare or education being accessible to all people, and capitalism, the economic system where companies are incentivized to make profit through shareholder value, instead of serving the community or the nation as a whole.
These things may sound good, but they do not apply to reality today.
In fact, many countries with universal health care or free higher education are also capitalist economies. France, for example, has great public services while also having large corporations run by CEOs whose only goal is making a ton of money.
There are a lot of liberal cities
Liberalism has never been particularly popular in America, but there are still plenty of places to find it. Some might even consider themselves liberals!
If you’re looking for an example of this, look no further than our state capital city Philadelphia.
The Democratic Party has won every presidential election since 1988 with at least 50 percent of the vote. They have also done well in most mayoral elections (with less than half of the votes).
This is not to say that Republicans do not exist here- they certainly do! But the Democrats clearly dominate local politics as well.
And while Philadelphia may be known for its hard drinking, pier exploring night life, and expensive food, it is nonetheless very liberal.
Liberal policies emphasize social justice and equality, along with environmental protection and anti-capitalism. These are sometimes referred to as “the green issues” due to their popularity among environmentalists.
Many politicians in Philly will proudly call themselves socialists or communists. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, because like any other label, what matters is how these people act and not what fancy words they use to describe themselves.