Nowadays you will hear a familiar refrain coming from the conservative camp “We should avoid talking about social issues.” Of course, the whole thing is utterly ridiculous! If you don’t want to talk about social issues, be a baker not a politician or a political activist! It is like a preacher saying we should avoid talking about God in church!!! It makes absolutely no sense. So I have decided to educate the people on the subject because obviously there is need for education.
First let’s look at what constitutes a “social issue.” This is important because people have no real context of what constitutes a social issue and what does not. According to dictionary.com the word social is defined as of or pertaining to human society, especially as a body divided into classes according to status. So if it pertains to human society, it is a social issue. Therefore, your Aunt Sue’s gout is not a social issue. However, if there was a sudden outbreak of people dying from gout it would then become a social issue because it is pertaining to human society. If your Aunt Sue was Patient Zero in this scenario then all of a sudden her gout, in particular, becomes a “social issue.”
Another definition of social is any interaction involving two or more people. Therefore, since politics by its very wording represents plurality, it is a social entity. Because politics must involve more than one person and deals with social interactions, it is purely a social instituion. Right now I am attending LACC as a Political Science major. So what kind of “science” am I studying? Social Science. As part of my major, I am required to take Economics. Three guesses what science Economics falls under. Bingo! Social Science. So if both economics and politics are social sciences, then both of them deal solely with “social” issues. Try to have an economy without producers and consumers-it is impossible. It cannot be done. An economist would call it irrational. And it completely is, even in its more traditional, sense of the word. Therefore anyone trying to argue that the economy is not a “social” issue is either a rank amateur or is blatantly lying to you and either way you should disregard their erroneous argument.
As we can see both Politics and Economics are intrinsically linked and both deal solely with social issues. When you talk about the GDP or unemployment you are talking about a social phenomena. Politics can only deal with social issues. It is unable to deal with anything else. If your boyfriend breaks up with you, you don’t call your Congressman. Why? Because that is not the sort of issues that the government deals with. Is it a social issue? In a manner of speaking, it does deal with the interactions of two of more people. However, it does not pertain to human society. So you call up your girlfriend, she pulls a Carrie Underwood on his mint condition 1965 Mustang and you are good to go. LOL. While it might be nice to call up your Congressman and have him sic the IRS on him, that is not how government works. [Unless you are a Congressional intern and then sometimes it does work that way.]
People like Ron Paul and other political pundits who sit there and try to demean “social issues” as not worthy of the government’s attention have no clue what the purpose of government is or what politics is for. What is really sad is that Ron Paul has been a senator for over 25 years and he still does not get that EVERYTHING IS A SOCIAL ISSUE.
So the next time a fiscal conservative tells you to pipe down about social issues, hand him this article and tell him, ”I will quit talking about “social issues” when you do!” and walk away! You will be glad you did.
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