In American pop culture, we call someone that dislikes Christmas or spoils the holiday Scrooge. But the protagonist of the Charles Dickens novel A Christmas Carol, Ebeneezer Scrooge, spoils Christmas with more than his sour mood: he refuses to contribute to charity and pays his employee poverty wages, limiting his ability to care for his sick son and to celebrate Christmas.
The main way Scrooge has harmed society is by refusing to share his wealth.
Today, by trying to undermine or take away social insurance, public education, civil liberties, access to health insurance, access to meaningful participation in elections, public transportation, raises to the minimum wage, and long-term unemployment insurance, the radical conservative movement is behaving far worse than Scrooge. Rather than merely withholding their aid to vulnerable Americans, radical conservatives are trying to take rights and public goods away from us. This is wrong and spoils America, not just Christmas.
Because we don’t have time to wait for ghosts to do it for us, progressives should consider comparing the radical conservatives to Scrooge because it’s a story everyone knows. Progressives should point out that the radical conservatives are acting worse than Scrooge and that by the end, Scrooge does begin doing justice by sharing his wealth and giving his employee a raise. Will radical conservatives remain worse than Scrooge the villain, or will they rediscover America’s tradition of public-spiritedness and follow the example of Scrooge the hero?