Talk:Social conservatism

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added South Africa[edit]

I added South Africa, mostly talking about it under apartheid. It was very socially conservative during this time period. Which you can read about on the article.

One should add the influences of churches and Christianity as well. And not limit it to pre-1994. Because the development is quite interesting. While the majority of the population (through all race groups) remains socially conservative on issues like abortion, death penalty, homosexuality, etc., it is remarkable that the majority of voters vote for parties that are socially liberal in their programs (more then 80% for ANC and DA). Taken the election outcomes are less then 50% so the social conservatives maybe nested within the group that refuses to participate. -- (talk) 12:42, 28 December 2014 (UTC)

Does anyone think China would make a good addition? They are pretty strict with gambling, pornography, and so on. In Mainland China at least. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Dutch Ninja (talkcontribs) 01:44, 24 December 2014 (UTC)

Removed 'Death Penalty' as a value[edit]

The statement was uncited, and in fact the death penalty is one of the most un-agreed upon issues among social conservatives. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:33, 9 February 2010 (UTC)

There are no citation is this entire article....--DCX (talk) 20:46, 15 April 2010 (UTC)

Small Word change[edit]

I removed the word traditional from in front of "traditional nuclear family". The idea that the nuclear family is and has always been a "normal" or "traditional" family, and that other arangments are new or deviant is simply revisionist history. It is similar to the false idea that before the 1960s women were always housewives, or that before the sexual revolution only married people had sex, and then only in the missionary position.

The nuclear family is not traditional

(Agree, easily. And the traditional family is not nuclear. Martin | talkcontribs 02:18, 14 February 2007 (UTC))

I propose that this page be replaced with a redirect to the Conservatism page, where social conservatism is well described and related to other types of conservatism.

Database 15:29, May 14, 2004 (UTC)

  • I disagree - it should remain here. The article could actually be expanded quite a bit. --Blackcats 21:53, 17 May 2005 (UTC)
  • Oppose merging/redirecting because social conservatism pertains to Christian Democracy (which CD template links here), whereas conservatism in general does not relate.    GUÐSÞEGN   – UTEX – 04:58, 11 April 2006 (UTC)
  • Oppose, per what Guospegn said. Itake 14:42, 11 April 2006 (UTC)
  • Oppose,mildly, because it stikes me that many people are "social conservatives" and "economic liberals". It might make as much sense to merge this with liberal as with conservative. Or, arguendo, with social. Martin | talkcontribs 02:18, 14 February 2007 (UTC)

Moved to talk[edit]

Its opponents commonly associate it with conservative religious groups, especially those that are fundamentalist, in addition to militarism and nationalism. Unattributed, assumptive, and hot-button - page deserves better. Pollinator 05:12, 24 March 2006 (UTC)


So could anyone explain what the NPOV problem seems to be? Itake 20:26, 10 June 2006 (UTC)

Sorry, an edit conflict arose while posting the following. In my opinion, this article has become biased. The reference to Kinder, Küche, Kirche seems to be a gratuitous attempt to link the philosophy to the Nazis, and the former linkage to oppression and injustice was the view of the editor, and would be disputed by people such as Peter Hitchens himself. I will try to correct some of this. Philip Cross 20:36, 10 June 2006 (UTC)
Wow... somebody wrote "genocide against homosexuals"!!! Wikipedia has a long way to go... Will help out on cleaning up the POV here. ER MD 20:17, 13 June 2006 (UTC)
Alrighty, read this article and it was so discombobulated (or however you spell that word) that I pared down the POV. Before somebody writes, it should be structed better so that it flows. Also removed lots of soapboxing. Also social conservatism is not necessarily a "cristian democracy" so that box was removed. ER MD 20:58, 13 June 2006 (UTC)


This article contains several usages of biased language and creates a strawman of opponents of social conservatism. The very defenition: "support for traditional morality and social mores" ignores the fact that social conservatism support only what they perceive to be "traditional values." But the most outrageous part of this article is its claims that critics of social conservatism "are usually those who see no particular value in established tradition and consider it to be an impediment to positive change." Most critics of social conservatism assert that the movement has been highly selective in what they consider traditional values, and at times have been accused of creating an idealistic past that never, in fact, existed. Many critics also charge that social conservatism is tinged with racist and sexist overtones, as most social conservative positions (i.e. abortion, affirmative action, feminism) relate in one way or another to the role of women and minorities in society. Those interested in a historically minded critque of the social conservative "traditional values" movement would enjoy the book "The Way We Never Were: American Families and the Nostalgia Trap" by Stephanie Coontz.

Agreeing with most of that. The language does seem biased in favour of conservatism. I think it's worth raising this as a NPOV dispute.--BigglesTh9 08:12, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

This is the most liberally biased article on wikipedia which isnt surprising considering its a left wing website. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:36, 12 February 2012 (UTC)


Examples of major movements in American History that social conservatives have opposed include freedom of religion, abolition of slavery and Jim Crow laws, same-sex marriage, the suffrage of women and racial minorities, termination of child labor, the choice of abortion, the teaching of evolution in public schools, ending McCarthyism, and equal civil rights for African-Americans.

This might be true but it is certainly not NPOV. It depicts social conservatives as still wishing to keep old practices that nobody would even think about bringing back today. I am myself a social conservative and I don't promote coming back to child labor, slavery or men-only suffrage! Someone should try to find a formultion that would tell the truth about the history of social conservatism without depicting social conservatives as cruel, sexist and racist people.

Don't forget that social conservatives progress too. Canjth 00:51, 27 September 2006 (UTC)

But social conservatives were cruel, sexist, and racist. 01:21, 17 April 2007 (UTC)
Though they presumably didn't realise it themselves at the time. It's only with the benefit of hindsight that today's social conservatives recognise the unpleasant small-mindedness in those of yesterday. Ironically, of course, tomorrow's social conservatives will be scurrying to distance themselves from those of today; and so on. The problem with following such a backward and reactionary philosophy is that history will very swiftly judge you as a petty and malicious fool. WombatDeath 23:51, 23 August 2007 (UTC)
I think that's very judgemental of both User:134.84.74/101 and WombatDeath to say. I personally am a social conservative and I personally agree with those values noted above - but I do not force my beliefs on others. I don't ask that anyone I meet in public to agree with me. Who are both of you to say that those beliefs are cruel, sexist, prejuidiced, and racist? When the very same could be thought of about liberals ideas and views. Regarding the article, I agree with user:Canjtah - I think the article does have a slightly bias tone to it and needs to be changed to a more neutral position. EmilyGreene1984 1:45, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
The history of the social conservative movement, including any societal innovations which social conservatives have opposed (abolition, child-labor laws, etc.), may rightly be included in a complete and unbiased article about social conservatism insofar as such history and opposition can be documented and cited. (Facts are facts; whether or not they make some people feel guilty, they are still relevant to the article.) Now, according to Canjth and EmilyGreene1984, the social conservative movement has progressed since then. If this is so, then they are free to document and cite specific ways in which today's movement is different. In this way, fairness and WP:NPOV can be achieved. (I do agree with Emily that the comments by and WombatDeath seem to be expressions of personal opinion, and therefore not particularly helpful for the purposes of the article, but this is only a talk page, so we might as well just take such comments for what they're worth.) Rangergordon (talk) 09:50, 23 October 2008 (UTC)
Quite frankly, I don't think any more documentation is needed to show that the vast majority of Social Conservatives oppose slavery, male-only sufferage and denying minorities civil rights than is needed to state that the sky is blue. Common sense, people. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:30, 9 February 2010 (UTC)

Intelligent design project?[edit]

How is this topic related to Intelligent Design? I don't see it. Martin | talkcontribs 02:23, 14 February 2007 (UTC)

What does social conservatism mean?[edit]

Re: the scope of definition:

  • What is the range of the term's current usage around the world
  • Which branch of knowledge claims to own the term. Is it a political term?
  • Does it have direct analogs in other languages?
  • Are there ambiguities in the usage of the term; different groups having adopted the term but with a different meaning?
  • If it has a generally accepted meaning, are there different terms in other languages that have the same denotation? Is there a "socially conservative" movement in Iraq, and what is it called?
  • And is this article attempting to answer these question?

In the USA:

  • I think of it as the "old fashioned morality" as regards family, sex, and recognition of the value of human life. Is it?
    Martin | talkcontribs 04:04, 14 February 2007 (UTC)

In Denmark and Sweden the word 'socialkonservative' means pre-welfare Conservatives. They are usually Social Progressive, and would be directly opposed to the Social Conservatives in this article. Carewolf 18:06, 7 May 2007 (UTC)

I would have to disagree. In Denmark social conservative has not been used as a term and within academic circles it has the same meaning as in USA. Not until 7 May 2007, when a new center-right party adopted the term, had it been used in any other way than the english one (as an example: "socialkonservativ" had only been used 26 times between 7 May 1997 and 7 May 2007) —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 11:28, 16 May 2007 (UTC).
Within the conservative party the expression has been used to describe the pro-welfare parts. Both Gitte Seeberg and Per Stig Møller has been described as socialkonservative both by themselves and by the press. In Sweden the same has happened in the party Moderaterne, where the current primeminister has been described as socialkonservative. The Swedish computer game Victoria, made the mistake in the translation and put Social Conservatives to the left of normal Conservatives. Also see the danish and swedish "translations" of this article (the danish is a translation of the swedish). Carewolf 11:39, 16 May 2007 (UTC)

Proposing splitting the article[edit]

Ok, I give up. Social conservatism is not only defined completely different in the nordic countries but also in Germany, and probably in the rest of continental europe. This form is often attributed to Bismarck who introduced germany's welfare system in the 1890s. It is somewhat related to what both conservatives in the UK and the US tries to suggest through Compassionate conservatism but much older and most importantly; not a Bushism.

I need some more information on what the meaning is in various countries, and then make a split between socially conservative, and social-oriented conservative. This can also replace the last paragraph in Liberal conservatism. Carewolf 13:37, 9 May 2007 (UTC)


On the "Political Ideology in the United States" article, it says that most social conservatives are women. Should this fact be included? -- 21:33, 20 September 2007 (UTC)

Illegal immigration[edit]

How can someone NOT be opposed to illegal immigration? Obviously if you were in power and you were in favour of it, it wouldn't be illegal would it? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:27, 14 June 2008 (UTC)

While there may be differences of opinion on immigration policy, it's doubtful that anybody is in favor of illegal immigration, other than illegal immigrants themselves. It's what is called a "wedge issue"--that is, it's used to stir up opposition to illegal immigration among the conservative base. Then politicians can accuse their opponents of favoring illegal immigration. It also serves to distract the base from faulty economic policies, because increasing wage stagnation, national debt and economic insecurity can be blamed on "illegal immigrants" rather than on their real causes. Rangergordon (talk) 09:30, 17 August 2008 (UTC)
A lot of people is in favour of "amnesties" for illegal immigratants, thus rewarding illegal immigration. I suppose they would like to have changed the law so the illegals would be legal in the first place, but that is probably not politically possible. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:11, 19 May 2010 (UTC)

There are plenty of people who are not illegal immigrants and are in favor of illegal immigration. However, it is not a mainstream view and opposition to it is not limited to social conservatives. -Matt — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:17, 8 February 2012 (UTC)

Present social conservative issues in U.S- Adoption[edit]

"favor restriction of civil marriage and child adoption rights to couples in heterosexual relationships "

Perhaps this could be broken into 2 points? As it reads, I think it implies that child adoption rights would be for any heterosexual couple as opposed to any MARRIED heterosexual couple. I don't think many social conservatives would feel any non-married couple, heterosexual or not, to be the ideal environment for child rearing. GBrady (talk) 20:45, 15 August 2008 (UTC)

Agreed, they are two different issues. And what about gay or lesbian married couples? Do social conservatives favor adoption by unmarried heterosexual couples over adoption by gay or lesbian married couples? Rangergordon (talk) 09:19, 17 August 2008 (UTC)
Why choose between two evils? (Btw. There is no such thing as same sex "marrige", no matter what the law may say.)

Single Source[edit]

seems to be "under construction" aka: non existent. proceeding to delete associated text. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:54, 6 March 2010 (UTC)

This entire article has no verifiable sources? Isn't that a problem?[edit]

Also, what exactly does "traditional" mean here? that's weasely and POV...--DCX (talk) 20:49, 15 April 2010 (UTC)

The word traditional means conforming to the historic culture in the nation in question. It's not POV. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:23, 19 May 2010 (UTC)

Iranian and Dutch parties[edit]

First, should we list Islamic fundamentalists here? By American or European standards, they are closer to Paleoconservatism, but even there they would the ultras. I doubt if extreme theocratic movements suit to a list of mainly European (more orthodox) christian democrat parties.
There's another, wholly different matter. The Dutch CDA is strictly speaking not socially conservative, despite its political 'ancestry'. The Dutch society is indeed one of the most socially liberal societies on earth, but even within this context the CDA is just a centrist party labelled christian democratic. Including them here seems to broaden the list too much. ChristenUnie and Staatkundig Gereformeerde Partij are rightly there, in my opinion.
Also: should we define the Party for Freedom as socially conservative?. It's still essentially a secularist/liberal, not a christian democratic party, and the opposition to supposed islamization in their case arises out of muslims' opposition to secular values, not so much out of care for the christian heritage of the Dutch society. Miacek and his crime-fighting dog (t) 11:19, 11 July 2010 (UTC)

The list of parties is original reaearch and should be deleted. There are very few parties that are specifically socially conservative. TFD (talk) 13:40, 11 July 2010 (UTC)
The list as a whole is definitely useful. You can easily verify that SGP and ChU are socially conservative, as well as Partei Bibeltreuer Christen or Liga Polskich Rodzin. But some entries should be deleted, yes. Let us proceed this way: we first verify on the basis of corresponding Wikipedia articles, but do not add CN tags to each and every. Miacek and his crime-fighting dog (t) 14:08, 11 July 2010 (UTC)
My experience with lists like this is they are constantly expanding and become a sort of original research. There is bound to be some disagreement over who should or should not be on the list. I would rather use a source that identifies social conservative parties/groups throughout the world and directly cite its list. But if you think you can improve the list, then good luck. TFD (talk) 17:59, 11 July 2010 (UTC)

Social conservatism, fascism, right-wing, British National Party, British National Front[edit]

Your interpretation of the relationship, or supposed relationship, between the aforementioned political ideologies/stances - 'social conservatism', 'fascism', 'right-wing' - is incorrect. Upon undoing my change to the 'Social Conservatism' article, you stated that "right-wing is an extreme of conservatism". In the message you sent me, you stated that "The BNF and BNP are generally considered right-wing or fascist. These would be extremes of social conservatism".

You seem to have misunderstood what the term 'right-wing' means, because, rather than it being an 'extreme of conservatism' (or being an extreme of any other political ideology), it is actually an umbrella term for several different political ideologies, one of these being conservatism. ("Today it is primarily used to refer to political groups that have a historical connection with the traditional Right, including conservatives, reactionaries, monarchists, aristocrats, and theocrats. The term is also used to describe those who support free market capitalism, and those who support some forms of nationalism, including fascism." - taken from the wikiarticle 'Right-wing politics').

Moving from this point on to the second statement of yours that I've quoted, you will see that there is no further need to explain why you are wrong in stating 'right-wing' and/or 'fascist' are "extremes of social conservatism". The only relationship that social conservatism and fascism have with one another, at least as far as the term 'right-wing' is concerned, is just that - they are both considered 'right-wing'. Any further relationship outside of this context between these two ideologies - for eg. characteristics one might happen to share with the other - is irrelevant in terms of a reason for listing a fascist party as an example of a socially conservative party. If it can be shown that fascism IS simply an extreme form of social conservatism within a wider debate, it would not change the fact that it is a distinct political ideology, seperate from social conservatism by way of it's differences.

Furthermore, whilst I, just like you, acknowledge that the BNP/BNF are fascist (subsequently making them right-wing), neither of our personal views on the BNP/BNF's ideology - and what we would label it as - count as a source with regards to wikiarticles. Moreover, the notion that this makes the BNP/BNF's ideology socially conservative is only derived from your misunderstanding of the terms, as already shown. So even if it was acceptable to label the BNP/BNF as fascist (and subsequently right-wing) on a wiki article, based solely upon what they are "generally held to be", they are not "generally held to be" social conservative in terms of their ideology.

However, all that being said, it is all technically secondary in light of the fact that - from among those I have browsed - the other political parties listed on the 'social conservatism' article are not fascist parties (to be more precise, they do not have 'fascism' listed under the subheading of 'ideology' on their respective articles). Surely if the criteria for a party being listed within this article, along with any party that actually has 'social conservatism' listed within it's ideology, is having 'fascism' as one of it's ideologies, then each political party that has - by virtue of an independant source - 'fascism' listed within it's ideology, should now be listed on the 'social conservatism' article.

To put it more concisely, I feel that - if you disagree with what I have said here with regards to the terms 'right-wing', 'fascist', 'social conservative' and how they relate to one another - there should at least be a wider discussion of some sort on the talk page of the 'social conservatism' article, upon the nature of these terms, before listing any party - not just the BNP/BNF - as an example of a socially conservative party, purely upon the grounds of that party being a fascist or right-wing party. I think that until that takes place, only political parties that have the term 'social conservatism' (or at the very least 'conservatism', which neither the BNP/BNF articles have) listed within the ideology subheading of their respective wikiarticles should be on the 'social conservatism' article itself.

-- Sjc613 02:20, 11 December 2010 (GMT)

You're talking about an edit I made two months ago, but you haven't even mentioned the name of the article. Yes, the short version of my view is that social conservatism does not entail fascism, but fascism does entail social conservatism. If you don't mind, I'm going to move this to the article talk page, as it has very little to do with me and quite a bit to do with the article. Dylan Flaherty 03:16, 11 December 2010 (UTC)

Tea Party and Social conservatism[edit]

The article claims that Tea Party groups are neutral or opposed to social conservatism, and cites two sources, but both of these sources are Tea Party websites. Everything I have read from non Tea Party sources claims that while the tea party movement "party line" is all about economics, the views of members of the movement are nearly universally social conservative. There are some citations to this effect in Tea Party movement (in regards to their overwhelming support for anti-gay marriage legislation, etc.) but nothing that explicitly terms them social conservatives as these citations are all about individual issues. Shouldn't we find some third-party source for this information? Eldamorie (talk) 15:53, 31 January 2011 (UTC)

You are correct; I've added citations to support this. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 03:37, 11 August 2012 (UTC)
Just a quick straw poll: Does anyone object to characterizing the Tea Party movement as socially conservative if we can cite it with a reliable source? Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 03:55, 11 August 2012 (UTC)
An interesting claim since so many sources (like the New York Times, WaPo etc.) connect large segments of the TPM to libertarianism - can you actually pull that off ? Collect (talk) 12:06, 11 August 2012 (UTC)
Easily. Consider that Ron Paul is a libertarian -- he ran as their presidential candidate -- yet a social conservative. Libertarianism isn't socially liberal, it's just against the federal government getting involved in social issues. This includes keeping the government from telling businesses not to discriminate. Note that Ron Paul fully supports local governments telling us who we can have sex with and how.
All this explanation was a favor to you. In reality, I don't need to explain how it can be both, I just need to refer to reliable sources that characterize it as both. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 16:38, 11 August 2012 (UTC)
As a Libertarian myself, I have to disagree. Ron Paul is "Libertarian-ish," but Gary Johnson is a "Libertarian." As noted (many times) by the Libertarian think-tank, the Cato Institute, Libertarianism is: "fiscally conservative and socially liberal, also known as libertarian."[1] Real Libertarians are generally more "socially liberal" than Liberals. Either way, my personal OPINION is that the Tea Party is nothing more than the "Blue Collar Conservative Party" now, regardless of its original intent. Ask any Tea Partier what they want government to do...and you'll hear the Republican Party platform, and ask them who they want to elect...and you'll get a bunch of Anti-Libertarians like Rick Santorum and Michelle Bachmann. But right now, because of the disorganized nature of the Tea Party, there are plenty of RS polls out there showing that they aren't Libertarian at all, and very Socially well as plenty of RS polls out there showing the exact opposite. So I'd say it's best to either include both viewpoints, or leave them out altogether, as there is no scholarly consensus. --Bryon Morrigan -- Talk 17:08, 11 August 2012 (UTC)
It's a mix. There are plenty of teabaggers who you would consider libertarian and plenty who you would consider (anti-libertarian) Republicans. I'd be fine with qualifying our statement with something like "The Tea Party movement is to a large extent socially conservative". How does that sound? Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 17:12, 11 August 2012 (UTC)
"No scholarly consensus" is a good, solid summary, IMO. This is unsurprising, because it's not really a knowable thing, and I doubt very much that any real connection can be drawn without OR. Moreover, the connection is of highly questionable relevance to the article. By the way Still, thanks for revealing your hostile bias (i.e., "teabaggers"). Belchfire-TALK 17:18, 11 August 2012 (UTC)
(ec) "To a large extent" is a your conclusion, not in the sources. We can say that TP members are generally more socially conservative than the general public, but that isn't interesting. — Arthur Rubin (talk) 17:23, 11 August 2012 (UTC)
(ec) Still-24-45-42-125: Oh, I agree with it, on an anecdotal level. But I doubt it will stay for long, I can find polls [2] on the subject that directly contradict each other.[3] And Belchfire: Teabagger! Teabagger! Teabagger! (If you say it three times, Sarah Palin appears...) --Bryon Morrigan -- Talk 17:26, 11 August 2012 (UTC)

─────────────────────────Well, here's what the sources say:

But the precise nature of the Tea Party has been less clear. Is it solely a movement to reduce the size of government and cut taxes, as its name -- some people refer to it as the Taxed Enough Already party -- implies? Or do its supporters share a broader set of conservative positions on social as well as economic issues? Does the movement draw support across the religious spectrum? Or has the religious right "taken over" the Tea Party, as some commentators have suggested?1
A new analysis by the Pew Research Center's Forum on Religion & Public Life finds that Tea Party supporters tend to have conservative opinions not just about economic matters, but also about social issues such as abortion and same-sex marriage. In addition, they are much more likely than registered voters as a whole to say that their religion is the most important factor in determining their opinions on these social issues.2 And they draw disproportionate support from the ranks of white evangelical Protestants.
Conservative on Social Issues, Too
In addition to adopting a conservative approach to the economy, Tea Party supporters also tend to take socially conservative positions on abortion and same-sex marriage. While registered voters as a whole are closely divided on same-sex marriage (42% in favor, 49% opposed), Tea Party supporters oppose it by more than two-to-one (64% opposed, 26% in favor). Similarly, almost six-in-ten (59%) of those who agree with the Tea Party say abortion should be illegal in all or most cases, 17 percentage points higher than among all registered voters. Tea Party supporters closely resemble Republican voters as a whole on these issues.
On immigration, Tea Party supporters are 20 percentage points more likely than registered voters overall to say better border security is the most important priority in dealing with illegal immigration (51% vs. 31%). About half as many Tea Party supporters (10%) as registered voters on the whole (22%) see the establishment of a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants as the top priority.
Tea Party backers also heavily favor the rights of gun owners. The September survey found that those who agree with the Tea Party favor protecting gun rights over controlling gun ownership by more than four-to-one (78% vs. 18%). Registered voters overall divide almost evenly on this issue (51% give priority to gun rights, 45% give priority to gun control). A January 2011 survey, conducted by the Pew Research Center in the wake of the Tucson shootings, showed no significant change in public views on the issue of gun control and gun rights.[4]

I think that's pretty clear. Also, "teabagger" is a term that teabaggers use for themselves and each other, so you're going to need to tone down the accusations. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 17:31, 11 August 2012 (UTC)

"Supports prohibition of premarital sex, non-marital sex" ??? =[edit]

This should be removed unless a reliable source can be provided that states that even a small percentage of social conservatives support laws to prohibit premarital and non-marital sex? LBJsBarber (talk) —Preceding undated comment added 11:24, 4 July 2011 (UTC).

I concur. Wikipedia is not a forum for baseless accusations (of legislating morality or anything else for that matter)Edcoach (talk) 05:09, 5 May 2012 (UTC)

Revent Revert[edit]

Nyyankees recently reverted a change to the lead, which removed redundant information and POV wording. I'd like to ask why that was done. For instance, the current lead contains:

  • "support a definition of marriage as being one man and one woman" and
  • "view the nuclear family model as society's foundational unit" and
  • "oppose expansion of civil marriage and child adoption rights to couples in same-sex relationships".

Why are all these needed? The last adequately sums up the topic: Conservatives generally oppose civil marriage and adoption for same sex couples. How are any of the rest relevant except in the context of opposing civil marriage? In another instance, the current lead states:

  • "support the right to practice religion free from government influence as supported by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution".

This sentence implies that liberals (or generally "not-conservatives") don't support that right. This is not a distinguishing characteristic of conservatism. It is also limited in scope to the US. Please explain why all of this was reverted. Thank you.   — Jess· Δ 16:18, 27 September 2011 (UTC)

Perhaps I shouldn't have reverted all of it. I reworked the lead here, let me know what you think. NYyankees51 (talk) 18:53, 27 September 2011 (UTC)

Issues with the article[edit]

The lead paragraph talks about "federal government" and "federal legislative passages and Supreme Court decisions", obviously referring to American realities. But this is nowhere explicitly stated! This, I think, indicates that the scope of the article is poorly defined: is it about ***American*** social conservatism (in which case a split and rename is in order) or is it about some kind of overarching international ideology (I don't think there is such an ideology but maybe others do - in this case we need a major rewrite). In any case, the article as it stands is problematic.

Another indication that something is wrong is the list of parties worldwide - the list for Israel consists of two religious parties and a faction within another party. Somewhat problematic. I do not know enough about other countries' politics to take apart their lists but I strongly suspect they are not that relevant as well.

So, what do you say, folks? Bazuz (talk) 12:23, 20 October 2011 (UTC)

Is this article naturally biased or has it been vandalized?[edit]

Make this article neutral. Thanks. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:25, 12 February 2012 (UTC)

This article needs the bias edited out.[edit]

Social conservatism is not authoritarian. Social conservatism is one who favors traditional values in society. Most social conservatives are small government conservatives and arent "contrasted" with small government conservatives. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:34, 12 February 2012 (UTC)

Your OPINION is neither consistent with reality, nor backed up by the reliable sources, both of which prove otherwise. Social Conservatism, whether promoted by Rick Santorum or Osama bin Laden, is pretty much the very DEFINITION of "Authoritarianism." --Bryon Morrigan -- Talk 15:27, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
The definition of Authoritarianism is "Characterized by or favoring absolute obedience to authority, as against individual freedom." Social conservatives broadly oppose absolute obedience to authority and strongly favor individual freedom as they understand it. What's more, they tend to oppose the whole idea of authoritative, reputable sources as such sources (such as the mainstream media, academia, and an extremely oppressive leftist administration) are increasingly hostile toward them. The same COULD be said of all sorts of groups representing diverse perspectives and philosophies worldwide. For strongly, provably biased academic elites to totally control all sides this article is both contrived and disingenuous. Shutting out internal perspectives and particularly opposing opinions is misleading, silences dissent, and very much favors absolute obedience to authority and opposes individual freedom. In summation, your commentary perpetuates the very atrocity of which you accuse them.Edcoach (talk) —Preceding undated comment added 20:53, 4 May 2012 (UTC).
The irony is that you use extremely biased phrases like "an extremely oppressive leftist administration" while accusing others of bias. Social Conservatism, particularly in the USA and Islamist countries, is about the most Authoritarian, oppressive movement in the world. (And it's remarkable how much Islamist and Christianist social conservatives agree on social positions.) The idea that someone like Rick Santorum (Pretty much the "face" of Social Conservatism in the USA right now...) is in favor of "individual freedom" is laughable and absurd. For example, check out this statement: "This whole idea of personal autonomy, well I don’t think most conservatives hold that point of view. Some do. They have this idea that people should be left alone, be able to do whatever they want to do, government should keep our taxes down and keep our regulations low, that we shouldn’t get involved in the bedroom, we shouldn’t get involved in cultural issues. You know, people should do whatever they want. Well, that is not how traditional conservatives view the world and I think most conservatives understand that individuals can’t go it alone. That there is no such society that I am aware of, where we’ve had radical individualism and that it succeeds as a culture." [5] Regardless, the entire foundation of Wikipedia is academic consensus and reliable sources. You seem to have a problem with that, and that will not be changed simply to make articles fit in with your distorted weltanschauung. --Bryon Morrigan -- Talk 21:26, 4 May 2012 (UTC)
I really question using Santorum as the standard for social conservatism. I'm more inclined to class him as a fascist. Probably the poster child for the movement is Palin, and the Republicans don't want her to speak for them. My conclusion is that the Republicans are out-of-touch with the grass roots (at least where I live right now). I know many people who call themselves variously TEA Party members, libertarians, Constitution Party and Republicans. All agree about wanting government out of their business--that the government which governs best governs least. They are persuasive and have caused me to re-examine my own assumptions. They have clearly given examples of Obama (and Bush and Clinton and even SCOTUS) acting in opposition to both the Constitution and the best interests of America. These are NOT fiscal conservatives nearly so much as people whose personal choices tend toward Biblical morality and Judeo-Christian values which more readily aligns with conservative social ideals--but nothing remotely authoritarian. That's not to say they broadly support forcing their beliefs on others. Some do--on both sides of the aisle--but at least here, the left appear to be the bigger culprits. Most of the conservatives I know strongly dislike Santorum (they found this whole batch of Republican candidates lackluster). After quickly perusing Stenner's only book, I am not especially persuaded by her argument. Apparently her advisers were, because the book reads like a bound dissertation (it'll be handy to have around at bed time). I have a degree in her field as well. My take is that she is either habitually blind (as I was) or philosophically unwilling to recognize liberal intolerance. Yet liberal intolerance, too, is everywhere. My professional experience is that most people profoundly hate politics and despise divisive social controversies. Meanwhile, most academics, politicians and the mainstream media feed the public a diet of their version of the Truth which doesn't jibe with the facts or the popular consensus of their personal convictions. Thus, the left, too, is out-of-touch with the grassroots. But to assert that social conservatism equates with authoritarianism greatly distorts the understanding of both. Get to know these people. Step outside your comfort zone and genuinely try to understand them. They are not stupid or in lock-step with Hitler or Rush Limbaugh as a whole. They believe what they believe with just as much passion and honesty and patriotism as Kennedy (or Reagan for that matter). Much of what made America great is her diversity. If either side succeeds in silencing the other, all are harmed and society is diminished.Edcoach (talk) 05:02, 5 May 2012 (UTC)
As a non-Christian, I'm not particularly interested in "getting to know" the people who are advocating that I be a second-class citizen in the USA, or that my religious beliefs are not covered under "Freedom of Religion," because they aren't Judaeo-Christian (The Socially Conservative group "Wallbuilders" has argued this in court...). That's like arguing that you, as a Jew, should go out and "get to know" other Socially Conservative groups like the the Taliban, Al Qaeda, the Ku Klux Klan, or Neo-Nazis. One can be "socially conservative" in their views without seeking to force those beliefs on others...but the ideology known as "Social Conservatism" is, by definition, the advocation of the legislation of such beliefs. And I don't know why you'd even bring up Libertarians. I'm a Libertarian, and we are, by definition, "Socially Liberal/Tolerant." --Bryon Morrigan -- Talk 13:47, 5 May 2012 (UTC)

Edcoach (talk) 16:56, 13 March 2012 (UTC) I would argue that all organized social movements--even those advocating anarchy and libertarianism--are authoritarian to some degree. Depending on readers' perspectives, almost any summary of political information can appear biased. The question is this, "Do self-proclaimed social conservatives find this article to be accurate?" I will leave this for others to decide. What strikes me as profoundly inappropriate is for those who do not hold a particular viewpoint to decide what does or does not constitute it.

That's a profoundly un-encyclopedic view...and would have Neo-Nazis "in charge" of the pages on Nazism. These pages are about provable facts from reputable sources, not "puff pieces" designed to promote ideologies. --Bryon Morrigan -- Talk 11:14, 14 March 2012 (UTC)
If it is "profoundly un-encyclopedic," to rely heavily on diverse sources (including researching and including material from primary sources), that allows the articles (and authors) to become insular and ignore the dynamics and internal rhetoric of a social movement. This is very weak scholarship approaching propagandizing. Such authors can then reference each other and create the illusion of reputation. Going further, the concept of "proof" in social contexts is a slippery slope at best. After 8 years of post-secondary education in which I witnessed "experts" in constant disagreement, I am more firmly convinced than ever that differences between opinion and fact are more often contrived than factual. As a Jew I would never want neo-Nazis to CONTROL the entire discussion of Naziism; however, neither should their perspectives be shut out. They must be fairly represented (no matter how strongly we might disagree with them), lest our understanding of them become distorted. Facts must not be made to serve political agendas.Edcoach (talk) 21:04, 4 May 2012 (UTC)

Socon moniker[edit]

Edcoach (talk) 16:49, 13 March 2012 (UTC) I'm a new user. I hope this the correct place to discuss an idea without creating problems.

I've come across the term Socon to refer to social conservatives/conservatism a few times lately. I submitted it to Urban Dictionary and would like to add it in parenthesis after the main title as well as creating a distinct Wikipedia page that points to this page.

Low IQ & Conservative Beliefs Linked to Prejudice[edit]

Secondary source discussing a link between social conservatism, prejudice and low IQ. From the article: "Low-intelligence adults tend to gravitate toward socially conservative ideologies, the study found. Those ideologies, in turn, stress hierarchy and resistance to change, attitudes that can contribute to prejudice, Hodson wrote in an email to LiveScience." SÆdontalk 00:30, 9 May 2012 (UTC)

This article is massively biased. How could it discuss social conservatism without 'any' mention of racism, sexism or other bigotry? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:12, 5 July 2012 (UTC)
Methinks thou hast confused Social conservatism with Far right politics. They aren't necessarily the same thing, though the socially conservative views on women and homosexuals certainly fit the bills of "sexism" and "bigotry," even if those specific words aren't shouted out in bold. --Bryon Morrigan -- Talk 23:30, 5 July 2012 (UTC)


There is material in the lead describing SC as a form of authoritarianism (undue weight tag has been applied by another editor). This material does not appear in the body of the article, therefore should not be in the lead. It needs to be moved down, probably to the section "Social conservatism and other ideological views." Belchfire (talk) 07:02, 23 July 2012 (UTC)

No, it needs to remain in the lead and be given more space within the article. Working on it. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 07:10, 23 July 2012 (UTC)
Thanks for acknowledging my point on policy. I'll revert your premature work in the lead, and you can put it back once you've expanded the article to support it. Belchfire (talk) 07:17, 23 July 2012 (UTC)
(ec-you beat me Belch) Hmmm seems we are in agreement that the label in the lede is not supported by the article body. This is a de facto violation of WP:MOSINTRO. You can't say keep the label in he lede in spite of it not being covered in the body. Label must be removed.– Lionel (talk) 07:20, 23 July 2012 (UTC)
This is really basic, Wikipedia 101 stuff. Non-controversial for most editors. Now that it's in the proper place, the undue weight tag can come off, I would say. Belchfire (talk) 07:24, 23 July 2012 (UTC)

Indeed, it's a fairly mechanical process. First, you make sure the article correctly identifies social conservatism as an authoritarian ideology. Then you have the lead reflect the article. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 08:26, 23 July 2012 (UTC)

The demands for the removal of this material come across as especially disingenuous considering that the information is sourced to a Cambridge University Press publication. When there's source that meets a fairly high standard of reliability, it would seem that the really basic Wikipedia 101 stuff would be to add the information to the body of the article. eldamorie (talk) 14:31, 23 July 2012 (UTC)
All's tolerable that ends tolerably. They moved it out of the lead, which automatically justified putting a one-word reference to it in the lead. Speaking of the lead, thanks for fixing it. I would probably have done it myself, but I used up my magic trio of reverts against some sort of broken bot. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 14:35, 23 July 2012 (UTC)
I'll tell you what's disingenuous: employing a citation that says the exact opposite of what is claimed in the article. It's also irresponsible to just throw a reference out there without pulling up the source and checking it. In this case, Stenner's book says almost exactly the opposite of what is claimed - in fact it could be used as a citation to offset what is said in John Dean's book. Belchfire (talk) 16:51, 23 July 2012 (UTC)
What I fail to why certain people seem to have a "need" to take the authoritarian part out...when Social Conservatism is pretty much the dictionary definition of "authoritarian political philosophy." It's like editing the article on Earth to remove all references to it being a planet. Either the people involved really don't understand what Social Conservatism is...or this is deliberate, POV-pushing propaganda, and nothing more. And until someone can come along and say that the reference to PAGE 86 of the Stenner book does not back up the original cited sentence, it should stay. We don't delete citations from JSTOR just because not everyone has access to it...nor should the fact that something is not viewable on Google Books should mean that it is not a "valid" citation. --Bryon Morrigan -- Talk 18:45, 23 July 2012 (UTC)
I did say that exact thing in at least two different edit summaries, but I'll repeat it here for your benefit: the reference to page 86 of Karen Stenner's book does not support the cited sentence. Furthermore, elsewhere the book says precisely the opposite. And by the way, "social conservatism" is a multi-word construct, so you won't find it in many legitimate dictionaries. Suggest you read up at WP:BIT for further info. Belchfire (talk) 19:02, 23 July 2012 (UTC)

─────────────────────────Here's the thing, as I addressed below: it DOES support the statement. Stenner claims that social conservatism is a completely different animal from traditional conservatism (what she calls "status quo conservatism") and that while it's true that conservatism does not necessarily entail authoritarianism social conservatism is a form of authoritarianism. eldamorie (talk) 19:04, 23 July 2012 (UTC)

...and speaking of "misrepresenting citations," if these POV warriors had actually read Stenner's book, as opposed to just skimming the Google Books version, they'd note that what she actually does is differentiate between different forms of conservatism, and she clearly places Social Conservatism in the "authoritarian" camp. In fact, much of that book, and her other works, deals with the concept of social/cultural authoritarianism as being the predisposition towards enforcing social conformity and order, and that's a pretty good definition of Social Conservatism. I mean, is there someone out there that thinks that Social Conservatism promotes individualism or libertarianism? Gods, it's the exact opposite! (And it's not just me saying this either.) For example, three different kinds of "conservatism" that Stenner discusses are: "status-quo conservatism," "laissez-faire conservatism," and social conservatism, which she describes as, "an enduring predisposition, in all matters political and social, to favor obedience and conformity (oneness and sameness) over freedom and difference." Furthermore, she specifically says this in regards to the last "type" of conservatism:
"The latter—which some have labeled “social conservatism” (Wilson, 1973; Wilson & Patterson, 1968) but which I call “authoritarianism”—has been my central research interest for more than a decade (see Feldman & Stenner, 1997; Stenner, 1997; especially Stenner, 2005). In that time, I have repeatedly tested two central hypotheses, as follows. H1: Authoritarianism (and not conservatism, lack of education, or religion) is the principal determinant of intolerance of difference across time and space and domain, that is, across any stretch of history, all cultures and every aspect (including racial, political and moral intolerance)." (Stenner, Karen, Three kinds of conservatism. Psychological Inquiry, 20, 142)[6]
In other words, yes...the answer is undoubtedly, "Social Conservatism IS Authoritarian," and Stenner backs that up. --Bryon Morrigan -- Talk 19:10, 23 July 2012 (UTC)
Ironically, that section of the book talks about how people confuse authoritarianism with conservatism. Stenner doesn't say that social conservatism is authoritarian; she points out that other people have said that, then proceeds to attack the conflation of the two. She alludes to elsewhere in the book where she has connected authoritarianism to somebody else's (Wilson) definition of social conservatism, but she is using that as an illustration only, on her way to explaining why the connection is false. It's heavy reading, I will allow, but it isn't so opaque that this cannot be understood. Belchfire (talk) 19:27, 23 July 2012 (UTC)
You expanded your comment while I was typing. OK, so now you need to bring in Wilson & Patterson, and show us what they are talking about. It could be most anything - that book is over 40 years old. Belchfire (talk) 19:30, 23 July 2012 (UTC)
And by the way, your quote from Stenner proves my point. Note that she says: "which some have labeled “social conservatism”. Stenner isn't saying this; she's pointing out that somebody else has said it. Thus, the Stenner citation was misused in the article. Belchfire (talk) 19:34, 23 July 2012 (UTC)
I still don't understand how there can be "controversy" here. What is your point? How can Social Conservatism NOT be "authoritarian"? It's mind-boggling to me that someone could even make such an argument... It's like trying to argue that Communism is not economically "authoritarian" or something... Feel free to read the entire article that I quoted, as I linked to a PDF. That she prefers to call it "Authoritarianism" rather than "Social Conservatism" is moot: She just said they're the same thing! --Bryon Morrigan -- Talk 19:37, 23 July 2012 (UTC)
OK, so you're biased. Thanks for pointing that out. But: WP:TRUTH and WP:BIT. Am I supposed to give way because your mind is boggled? You need a reliable, verifiable source for any material that is challenged, and the source we have been discussing does not support the way it was used in the article. Not to mention that the statement SC is authoritarian doesn't belong in the opening sentence. Now, yesterday I found another source that does support this notion, and I inserted it further down, where it belongs. But Stenner's ideas are something different, and now we see that Stenner hinges entirely on Wilson & Patterson in order to be relevant here. So if you want to include Stenner, you've got some more work to do. Belchfire (talk) 19:47, 23 July 2012 (UTC)
Everyone is "biased," and it's clear from your edits that you identify as Socially Conservative[7], so don't act all high and mighty. My mind is not "boggled," and while RS does exist that describes the authoritarian nature of Social Conservatism (as even you have admitted), the inverse is not true. And regarding Stenner: (1) She states that she considers what others call "Social Conservatism" to be better described as "Authoritarianism." (2) She describes this philosophy a lot, and it's identical to what is commonly referred to as "Social Conservatism." (3) She differentiates it from other forms of Conservatism, but still describes it as the third "type" in the aforementioned article, describing the 3 types of Conservatism. How exactly is this not a good RS stating that Social Conservatism is Authoritarian? Please, make your case without semantics. --Bryon Morrigan -- Talk 20:03, 23 July 2012 (UTC)

─────────────────────────(edit conflict)Multiple users have now explained multiple times why the cited source does in fact support the statement. Your continued refusal to understand these explanations seems to come from your own biases. I'd suggest checking out WP:IDHT. eldamorie (talk) 20:05, 23 July 2012 (UTC)

I'm not using semantics; you and Karen Stenner are using semantics. Stenner cites Wilson (1968!) to define social conservatism. What does Wilson say? Oops, it doesn't really matter because combining sources to reach a conclusion is OR and SYNTH. Bottom line: you need a better source. Belchfire (talk) 20:09, 23 July 2012 (UTC)
Yes, this (Note that she says: "which some have labeled “social conservatism”. Stenner isn't saying this; she's pointing out that somebody else has said it.) is semantics. Wilson and Patterson are well-known psychologists who created a "test," called the "Conservative Scale" or "C-Scale" to define how "Conservative" a person is, and their test revolves almost purely around "Social Conservatism," rather than fiscal or economic issues. --Bryon Morrigan -- Talk 20:24, 23 July 2012 (UTC)
Based on what I've seen here, what multiple users have actually done is repeatedly insert a source that purports to support their bias without bothering to actually check it. You're the first who has actually looked into it, from what I can see. Belchfire (talk) 20:13, 23 July 2012 (UTC)
Byron Morrigan was the user who inserted the source in the first place. Citing another definition is standard practice in academic works, and because the SYNTH is in fact Stenner's and not a Wikipedia editor's, and the work comes from a respected academic publisher, there should be no problem here. You still haven't addressed the other source making the same claims, etiher. eldamorie (talk) 20:18, 23 July 2012 (UTC)
I checked the book out from a university library back when I was a Psychology doctoral student. I can't check it out again, because I switched to law school! --Bryon Morrigan -- Talk 20:24, 23 July 2012 (UTC)
I see a problem which no one else has commented on. If, as has been stated multiple times on this page, Stenner specifically refers to Wilson for the definition of "social conservatism", unless our definition is the same as Wilson's, Stenner's comments belong in another article. If Stenner had her own definition of "social conservativism", we could make the statement in her voice. — Arthur Rubin (talk) 08:05, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
I reject your framing. If Stenner talks about social conservatism and her description is consistent with what our sources describe it as, we don't need to dig any deeper. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 08:13, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
You reject Wikipedia policies and guidelines, as well. However, I'm saying that no one else has mentioned that issue, and it is a real issue, if you understand WP:SYNTH. — Arthur Rubin (talk) 08:23, 8 August 2012 (UTC)

Lead...[edit] recently changed the lead to:

Social conservatism focuses on the preservation of what are seen as traditional values. This can either be pursued by a political movement or imposed by an authoritarian state.

Previously, it was:

Social conservatism is an authoritarian political ideology that focuses on the preservation of what are seen as traditional values.

For a few reasons, I don't think it's an improvement. The first sentence does not identify social conservatism as anything, it just characterizes it. I would prefer that we call it a political ideology from the start. I'm also confused by the new second sentence, as authoritarianism is independent of statism. For example, there's no shortage of people who strongly oppose the state because it gets in the way of their ability to run their family as they see fit. As such, conservatism is neither about an authoritarian state nor about a political movement. It's simply an authoritarian political ideology.

I'd like to encourage to revert their changes. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 14:17, 23 July 2012 (UTC)

This appears to be a dead issue now. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 14:37, 23 July 2012 (UTC)
As the IP continues to make this change, I have added a citation to the lede in order to, perhaps, make the message more clear. It seems like the IP is conflating "authoritarianism" as a practice that enforces a view on others (à la authoritarian parenting, etc.) with political totalitarianism and is reading a nonexistent criticism of social conservatism into the phrasing. eldamorie (talk) 15:30, 23 July 2012 (UTC)
Check your cites a little more carefully (or just... check them). I removed your citation because it was bogus, more info is in the edit summary. For that matter, the same info was in the edit summary from when I removed that cite yesterday, but I wouldn't criticize anybody for missing that. Now the opening sentence fails WP:MOSBEGIN and WP:UNDUE, but I'll chill for a bit to get a little consensus before correcting the obvious POV-pushing. Belchfire (talk) 16:58, 23 July 2012 (UTC)
Stenner's argument is that authoritarianism and conservatism are not necessarily the same (notice that she distinguishes between "status-quo conservatism" and the topic of this article, "social conservatism" which are two widely divergent concepts, and "social conservatism" is explicitly linked (on p. 86 and 140 as well as elsewhere). Note that Stenner argues that social conservatism is not real conservatism and therefore the claims made by Stenner (that conservatism and authoritarianism are not necessarily linked) are not really refuted by the claims in your edit summary, eldamorie (talk) 17:18, 23 July 2012 (UTC)
Cassel (the other citation, which you left) 'explicitly draws a distinction between "authoritarian conservatives", which are identified with social conservatives, and other types of non-authoritarian conservatives. eldamorie (talk) 17:19, 23 July 2012 (UTC)
Perhaps the solution here is better sources that are a little less oblique about what they're trying to say. If we have to use both Stenner AND Wilson to support what is says in the article, that would be SYNTH and we can't go there. Belchfire (talk) 20:01, 23 July 2012 (UTC)

Ok, it's time for a sanity check. Does anyone honestly doubt that we have adequate citations to call social conservatism "authoritarian"? Anyone? Anyone at all? I didn't think so. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 03:08, 24 July 2012 (UTC)


There a line that confuses me a bit:

Social conservatism is often associated with the position that the national government should have a greater role in the social affairs of its citizens, generally supporting whatever it sees as morally correct choices and discouraging or outright forbidding those it considers morally wrong ones.

The part that bugs me is the word "national". There are plenty of social conservatives, such as Ron Paul, who have a libertarian bent and therefore oppose federal government involvement, despite endorsing local government involvement. Would anyone be opposed if I dropped the "national"? Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 10:07, 31 July 2012 (UTC)

Since there's no opposition, I'll be bold now. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 03:06, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
I'm not going to quibble with your edit (although, somebody else might), but I'm going to take advantage of what seems like a teachable moment to point out a critical flaw in your editing. As we can see from your "thinking out loud" above, you're using your own judgment to second guess the source. You reason that "there plenty of social conservatives ...", and continue down the path until you reach the point where you justify overriding the judgment of Milan Zafirovski, who is the author of the source cited at the end of the sentence. That's textbook OR, and it would be fully justifiable to revert your edit on those grounds alone, regardless of the fact that nobody objected when you proposed it. But again, I'm not going to do it. I'll leave that to somebody else. Belchfire-TALK 03:25, 8 August 2012 (UTC)


We have reliable sources characterizing social conservatism as authoritarian. Are there non-fringe sources that disagree? If so, let's add citations and weaken the claim. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 03:28, 7 August 2012 (UTC)

One book is not sources. Furthermore there huge disconnect with this argument. The Tea Party Movement, for example is antithesis to government control, which is then antithesis to social conservatism, but it is labeled as such in this article. Ironically, the definition of Authoritarian is much closer to the Democratic party in that government is in control of almost all aspect of life. Arzel (talk) 04:49, 7 August 2012 (UTC)
That's a bizarre statement, so weird that I have to write it off as partisan original research. You need to bring out some sources, not just your personal opinion. For example, is a very reliable source that confirms the social conservatism of the teabaggers. On this basis alone, you should reinstate the link you just removed.
It's also not at all correct to say that we have just one book. Here's another: Want some more? No, wait, why don't you first show me a reliable source to the contrary, ok?
I recommend strongly that you revert your recent changes, but I'm going to let you have a chance to do some research and come back with sources. I won't wait forever, though. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk)
I've already researched it and this was already discussed. The Stenner book has been egregiously misused here. A single source (that has been badly misquoted, no less) is not justification for the statement being made in Wikipedia's voice in the lead of this article. It should probably be pulled from the body, too, but the case for that isn't quite as strong. Belchfire-TALK 05:16, 7 August 2012 (UTC)
We've discussed it, but you haven't made a very persuasive argument. You're also ignoring the fact that the mention in the body cites a review of the Dean book I linked to above. (Really, a review is in some ways better than the book itself, as it shows notability.) Citations such as show that authoritarianism is uncontroversially understood to be a key part of the social conservative dynamic.
In short, I am not particularly persuaded by your argument. Can you do better than this? Do you have some reliable sources, as opposed to your quirky personal interpretation of Stenner or other original research? Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 05:31, 7 August 2012 (UTC)
While I'm at it, here's a primary source that is clear enough that it can't be misinterpreted: Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 05:40, 7 August 2012 (UTC)
And the mention of the Tea Party above, and the Democrats' "authoritarianism," shows a lack of understanding. Yes, Liberals tend to be "authoritarian," ON ECONOMIC ISSUES, and the Tea Party tends to be "anti-authoritarian" ON ECONOMIC ISSUES...but this is the page for SOCIAL Conservatism, which is basically the idea that "Big Government" should impose a moral/religious viewpoint upon you...and is about as "authoritarian" as one can get! --Bryon Morrigan -- Talk 09:57, 7 August 2012 (UTC)
This is the crux of the issue. This article is not about conservatism in general. Stenner's book would only be misused if it was being used to make the claim that conservatism is itself authoritarian. That's not the claim that is being made in the article, and it's certainly not the claim being supported by the citation. If one is to mark ideologies along a continuum of libertarian vs. authoritarian, there's no question that social conservatism, an ideology that seeks to enforce certain cultural norms is anything but authoritarian. It's laughable to claim otherwise. eldamorie (talk) 12:57, 7 August 2012 (UTC)
Laugh if you want, but come up with sources to back you up before you try to insert your own opinions in the encyclopedia. The way Stenner's book was used here is synth. It doesn't say what people claim it says, and you can't reach that point without using a second source. Since Stenner specifically references another work (Wilson & Patterson) to define her terms, we can't arrive at the claim made in the article without it. That's the textbook definition of WP:SYNTH. Belchfire-TALK 16:58, 7 August 2012 (UTC)

─────────────────────────I actually had no perspective on this before I read this article and checked out the sources. If Stenner specifically referencing another work makes it synth, then every single secondary source would be synth. And, even if this was the case, you STILL haven't addressed the other citation. eldamorie (talk) 17:02, 7 August 2012 (UTC)

It's not that Stenner addresses a second work; it's that Stenner relies 100% on the other work to define what she's talking about. This was all addressed in the earlier discussion, but consensus stood firmly in favor of ignoring this particular core policy in the interest of POV-pushing. I'm pretty sure the second cite was added later, to cure the deficiency introduced by the use of Stenner (although I could be wrong, and it's beside the point), but what's Stenner still doing here if we've found another work to reference that doesn't suffer from the same defect? In any event, with or without Stenner, what we have is certainly not sufficiently dispositive to be used in the first sentence of the lead. Clearly, what really matters to most editors in this discussion is that social conservatism be branded with this label. Writing an accurate and verifiable encyclopedia that adheres to its own quality standards is incidental. Belchfire-TALK 17:25, 7 August 2012 (UTC)
Perhaps the consensus among die-hard conservatives, but not the general consensus. The fact that Stenner references other work means she's an academic; it's not a strike against her. We also have Pew Research, Dean, LiveScience and the psych paper as reliable sources. Do you have anything at all that contradicts this? Anything??? Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 02:58, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
You have sources that contridict each other. If social conservatism is really is ideologically totalitorian and the Tea Party is a social conservative fraction of the conservative ideology you have a general disconnect. The main platform of the Tea Party is reduced federal government scope and size; reduced federal control over a person's life. This plus you personally attacked the Tea Party by calling them "Teabaggers" show me that you are only here to push a POV, and you wonder why you are having general problems with many editors here at WP. Arzel (talk) 03:23, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
There's no contradiction; you just aren't distinguishing between social and economic conservatism. Economic conservatives want to shrink the federal government. Social conservatives want to empower the courts to arrest gays. See the distinction? Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 03:30, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
"arrest gays"? Really? What a bunch of BS. Arzel (talk) 03:35, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
You need to do some research before you give people the impression that you don't understand the subject matter of this article well enough to edit it. Here is a fine example of a social conservative suggesting that we arrest gays: Family_Research_Council#Statements_on_homosexuality. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 03:50, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
Sorry, but when you make stupid blanket statements like that you lose the argument. You clearly have an agenda you wish to push, I suggest you do it elsewhere. Arzel (talk) 05:03, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
I see. You claim that social conservatives don't want to arrest gays. I disprove this. You then insult me by saying it's a "stupid blanket statement" and insist that you won an argument somehow. You then insult me some more by claiming I'm a POV pusher. Really? Is that the best you can do? Do I really need to report you for WP:CIVIL?
Anyhow, since you didn't dispute what I said about social vs. economic conservatives, I guess you're giving up on that claim. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 05:13, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
Yep. Check the section above this one. There's a few things he doesn't quite understand about editing the encyclopedia. Belchfire-TALK 05:08, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
Thanks for piling on with the insults. Do you have anything productive to add? Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 05:13, 8 August 2012 (UTC)

───────────────────────── That wasn't an insult; that was a neutral statement of observable fact. Believe me, had I meant to insult you, you would know it. Why don't you look at my comment in the other section and see if you can learn something from it? Belchfire-TALK 05:21, 8 August 2012 (UTC)

Whatever it was, it's wasn't productive. You said nothing about what sources you can offer that dispute the notion that social conservatism is authoritarian. Do you have any sources or is it just your WP:OR? Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 05:25, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
Additionally, your Pew source does not say that the Tea Party is a social conservative faction. It asks the question, and finds that finds that most in the religious right (SC's) support the movement, but that a large percentage of the movement have little knowledge of the religious right. Arzel (talk) 03:29, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
It is very often the case that you say something confidently, but the data says the opposite. The cite says, "A new analysis by the Pew Research Center's Forum on Religion & Public Life finds that Tea Party supporters tend to have conservative opinions not just about economic matters, but also about social issues such as abortion and same-sex marriage." In case this is too vague, it also includes a nice chart with the quantitative difference, labeled "Tea Party: Also conservative on social issues". This is not controversial. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 05:19, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
Your Pew cite doesn't support the statement you inserted into the article. You really need to get your head wrapped around the concept of OR, or you're just going to continue to spin your wheels. Belchfire-TALK 05:27, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
Yes, this is blatantly original research... by Pew, not me. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 05:35, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
Yeah. It's pretty obvious who the POV pushers are here, and they are the ones who seem to think (against all logic and reason) that Social Conservatism is not "authoritarian." (And apparently now, that SC is not anti-gay...) --Bryon Morrigan -- Talk 13:20, 8 August 2012 (UTC)

Note: The claims that "Social conservatism" is "anti-gay" and "pro-authoritarian" would require strong peer-reviewed articles to warrant such clearly strong claims. Highbeam finds over 1800 articles on "social conservatism". The subset using "anti-gay" is 24. Of those, most are not about "social conservatism" as a topic. Vide [8] from WaPo: The social conservative movement is stronger and more mainstream than ever before. then Yep, "values" is code for "social conservatism" is code for "anti-abortion, anti-gay marriage," plus the reliably traditional positions on other social issues that can be readily inferred. Which clearly does not state that "social conservatism" is "anti-gay" at all. [9] LA Daily News They have tried to strike a halting, tenuous balance between their liberalism and the social conservatism of many blacks. No connection to "anti-gay" present. In short - there is a paucity of sources making claims which would require strong sourcing in the first place. As to the "authoritarian" claim: [10] The Economist article does not link general social conservatism with authoritarianism other than in Saudi Arabia regarding Internet censorship. Most of the "authoritarian" links are actually regarding Muslim social conservatism and authoritian regimes. Thus not remotely relevant here. And so on for the other cites found by Highbeam. Sorry - unless folks can show this is more than a fringe claim, it does not belong here. Cheers. Collect (talk) 14:03, 8 August 2012 (UTC)

If you were using "anti-gay" as a search term, then you need to work on your research skills, as that's not a common academic phrase. Opposition to LGBT Rights and same-sex marriage = "Anti-Gay." If you seriously think we need a flood of articles showing that Social Conservatism is opposed to LGBT Rights, then I'll waste a bunch of time linking them...but are you really saying you think this is necessary? If Social Conservatism is not against LGBT Rights...and not "authoritarian"...then please tell me what you think it (SC) is. ??? Also, waiting until another editor has JUST REMOVED a citation, then claiming, "Well, there's only one citation, so it's "fringe,"" is just about the most blatant violation of WP rules as I've seen on this page. You KNEW that there HAD been multiple citations A FEW HOURS AGO, and you waited until another Conservative editor removed one, then "pounced." --Bryon Morrigan -- Talk 14:18, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
I also used "Homophobic" etc. I was quite thorough. [11] etc. The term is not generally associated with "social conservatism" and is found in a minuscule subset of articles on the topic, and generally does not make what you "know to be the truth" supported by any more than a small FRINGE group. That you "know" opposition to same-sex marriage is homophoibic is interesting - but not usable in any article as you are not a reliable source. As for your claim that I am acting as anything other than an outside editor - make accusations at the proper noticeboards - but making screeds here is not going to impress anyone at all. Cheers. Collect (talk) 14:31, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
I'm amazed and flabbergasted. You really think that Social Conservatives are in favor of LGBT Rights? Gay Marriage? Etc.? --Bryon Morrigan -- Talk 14:37, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
And furthermore, as stated at the beginning of this section... There are reliable sources saying that SC is authoritarian. If you have any RS that disagrees, FEEL FREE TO ADD IT. It certainly looks as if you cannot find these alleged sources, absence of a attack the sources that exist, even though they come from clearly reliable sources. This seems to be a "pattern" among Conservative editors (and specifically Collect): Attack the sources. Remove them one by one, regardless of lack of consensus. Then remove the "offensive" sentence. They work methodically to implement their POV, one brick at a time, until the sentences they find "objectionable" have been removed. It's disgusting, and nothing more than Orwellian newspeak propaganda, and I'm sick and tired of it. --Bryon Morrigan -- Talk 14:46, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
“Social conservatism and neoconservatism have revived authoritarian conservatism, and not for the better of conservatism or American democracy. True conservatism is cautious and prudent. Authoritarianism is rash and radical. American democracy has benefited from true conservatism, but authoritarianism offers potentially serious trouble for any democracy.” (John W. Dean) --Bryon Morrigan -- Talk 14:49, 8 August 2012 (UTC)

First: The sources which connect authoritarianism with social conservatism are primarily about Muslim nations - not about the US or Western Europe. John Dean is a single author whose book was not peer-reviewed, nor do we find supporting reliable sources for his singular claim. In fact, since libertarians are, by definition, anti-authoritarian, any claim here of supporting authoritarians applies, at most, to an international subset of social conservatism, and also applies to many non-conservative groups. Second, you appear to define opposition to same-sex marriage as being homophobic. Such is the path of POV, indeed. Third -- accusing any editor of Orwellian newspeak propaganda is a personal and uncivil attack. Lastly - present your conspiracy theory about editors at a prroper noticeboard - like AN/I. Do not make such absurd claims on this or any article talk page. Cheers. Collect (talk) 15:10, 8 August 2012 (UTC)

I don't know why you're bringing up "Libertarians" again. As I've mentioned before on this page, I am a Libertarian. Libertarians are, by definition, anti-authoritarian, and SOCIALLY LIBERAL, not socially conservative. If the Tea Party were truly "Libertarian," then I'd be a part of it. Unfortunately, it's full of Christian Supremacists and homophobes, and I'm pretty sure that a dirty Heathen like me would not be very "welcome." It's social conservatism that separates Libertarians from Conservatives. One cannot be both. --Bryon Morrigan -- Talk 19:28, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
I don't know what to say, other than "Stop watching MSNBS." Belchfire-TALK 20:10, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
Ah, I see. have no argument, then? I can easily prove the statements about Libertarianism, with citations from RS, as well as Libertarian think-tanks, like the Cato Institute, and the Libertarian Party (US). The Tea Party began as a somewhat Libertarian, economically-oriented movement, but was quickly hijacked by mainstream conservatives and the Republican Party. That's pretty much common knowledge, albeit subjective....but backed up by polls. Either way, it has nothing to do with the Anti-Libertarianism of Social Conservatism, which is best expressed by the words of SC's "poster-boy," Rick Santorum (Tell me if this doesn't sound "authoritarian" to you):
"One of the criticisms I make is to what I refer to as more of a libertarianish right. You know, the left has gone so far left and the right in some respects has gone so far right that they touch each other. They come around in the circle. This whole idea of personal autonomy, well I don’t think most conservatives hold that point of view. Some do. They have this idea that people should be left alone, be able to do whatever they want to do, government should keep our taxes down and keep our regulations low, that we shouldn’t get involved in the bedroom, we shouldn’t get involved in cultural issues. You know, people should do whatever they want. Well, that is not how traditional conservatives view the world and I think most conservatives understand that individuals can’t go it alone. That there is no such society that I am aware of, where we’ve had radical individualism and that it succeeds as a culture." (Rick Santorum, as quoted by the Cato Institute [12])
So yeah. The Tea Party has been very supportive of Social Conservatives like Santorum and Michelle Bachmann, and that in itself is enough reason for a true Libertarian like myself to run the @#$% away from them. --Bryon Morrigan -- Talk 20:41, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
You make valid points about Libertarianism, but there's not much of an argument to be made against a naked non sequitur, such as what you're saying about TEA, other than to point out what it is, shrug one's shoulders, and move on. Either you will see it for what it is, once it's been pointed out, or not. [shrug] Belchfire-TALK 20:52, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
Collect, as others have pointed out at length, your research skills are apparently lacking and you have some aversion to answering direct questions. Is social conservatism authoritarian and homophobic? Well, do we have any reliable sources saying it is? We do, and many. Do we have any reliable sources bothering to dispute this? Apparently not.
Based on our sources, this is a closed issue. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 17:18, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
Just to point out something about your first point above: this article is not "social conservatism in the United States", so the fact that a source is primarily about non-US or Western Europe should in no way be a disqualifier. eldamorie (talk) 15:19, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
Indeed, it is a closed issue based on a consensus-driven re-balancing of the article. We have attributed the fringe theories to their respective authors, and we have removed undue mention of the authoritarian theory from the lead. I think that's the correct outcome. Belchfire-TALK 17:32, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
As usual, your summary is blatantly false. Not a single source was found to dispute the mainstream understanding, bolstered by scientific research, that social conservatism is authoritarian. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 17:43, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
And I suggest that you reversion to personal attacks is still objectionable, and may be actionable at AN/I even. Try to deal with the words and not with the ediotrs, please. And I suggest you redact your attacks on editors. Cheers. Collect (talk) 17:50, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
The only personal attack here is your empty threat. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 18:21, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
(edit conflict)x2 While I might quibble with some of Belchfire's wording (re: whether or not this really is "fringe"), I would agree that the current version of the article is probably the "right" version. eldamorie (talk) 17:52, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
Do you have any reasons for your conclusion? Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 18:21, 8 August 2012 (UTC)

Stennet is controversial[edit]

If you go through our own articles, you can see that the Stennet/Altemeyer right-wing authoritarianism thesis is pretty controversial (e.g., we admit this in the article on the authoritarian personality). I also get the impression that Stennet's book hasn't made as much of an impression as it might, because it's too turgid. At any rate, the bland passive voice construct is right out: this identification is (as anyone reading this discussion can figure out) the pet theory of one side of the liberal-conservative wars, not something that every neutral person (if indeed there is such a one) agrees on. Mangoe (talk) 19:06, 8 August 2012 (UTC)

And I still fail to understand why it is even "controversial" in the first place. It's only "controversial" to Conservative editors, not to academics, as nobody has been able to find a single source disputing it. The basic concept of Social Conservatism is the idea that the government should use the power of government to enforce Conservative social norms, usually based on the religious beliefs of the majority of the population. How that could be anything BUT "authoritarian" is beyond the conception of any rational human being. --Bryon Morrigan -- Talk 19:20, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
It's controversial because not everybody agrees. Isn't that self-evident? If you think something can't be considered "controversial" simply on the basis that those in disagreement are on one side of the political spectrum, you just might be biased.
I'm not too sure that the source of our controversy here on Wikipedia isn't based on a fallacious categorization of social conservatism as a "political ideology". I think it might be more properly termed a "social outlook" (or something similar), which would stop this argument dead in its tracks. Belchfire-TALK 19:38, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
The parallel here would be to evolution. There's absolutely no scientific controversy about evolution, but it's politically/socially/religiously controversial because non-scientists dislike it for non-scientific reasons. In the same way, the authoritarian nature of social conservatism is not scientifically controversial, just disliked by some conservatives, such as you. If it were scientifically controversial, there would be reliable sources to support this. I've asked repeatedly for such things, but you haven't come up with them. My conclusion is that you were unable to find any.
Prove me wrong by showing a controversy. Otherwise, stop claiming there is one. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 20:59, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
Yes, Morrigan, it's right there in our own articles on Stennet's and Altemeyer's work, citation and all! And as I said, the impression I get is that not a lot of people, except for maybe those who need a citation in this article, care about her book in particular. It has only six reviews or so on Amazon, for instance, and one in Google Books, and that last one is complaining about how turgid it is. And also, the truth is that no adult when I was a child would have thought there was anything authoritarian about the kind of regulation of behavior (e.g. blue laws) that social conservatism might engender—which is to say, what the laws then actually looked like. Your assessment is very much a function of your place and time, not to mention the political theory commitments that are all over your user page. Mangoe (talk) 19:42, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
You don't think "blue laws" are/were authoritarian? Sure, most social conservatives wouldn't _describe_ themselves as "authoritarian," just as most liberals wouldn't _describe_ themselves as fiscally authoritarian. It's still an apt designation, however...and backed up by RS, Stenner or no. And as I've said many times regarding user-pages: A moral and ethical person puts his/her views out in the open. Everyone has biases. Those who pretend NOT to are the worst kinds of cowards and liars. Check every person's edits that disagrees with the "authoritarian" label, and it's quite clear that they are Conservatives...just not as "open" about their political leanings, because they want to PRETEND to be objective. --Bryon Morrigan -- Talk 20:06, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
I personally am adverse to using such loaded labels. And back when I was a kid, before you were born, when people used the word "authoritarian", they meant people like General Franco and other such dictators, or the governments of the Warsaw Pact. The fact that you could go out to eat on Sunday but couldn't buy clothes was at worst annoying; it wasn't looked upon in the same terms as regimes which were wont to imprison their detractors. Likewise, nobody would have described the parallel statements of certain big city mayors concerning a certain fast food chain in those terms as anything but, well, stupid and busybody.
If you think there are other RS, then instead of hammering away at the inclusion of Stennet, go find them, and we can see whether they are good enough. I don't have a problem with saying that some people (e.g. libertarians) characterize it that way, but you are trying to hide the fact (which is apparent in this very discussion) that the claim is extremely controversial (and indeed, I read it as a kind of slur rather than a description). I'll bet that if you put some effort into it, you can find objections as well as one not-all-that-important book as support. Mangoe (talk) 20:57, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
Sources like these?[13][14][15] Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 21:01, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
When did Dean's work get peer-reviewed? Is it widely cited by others? Or is it mainly a goolefarming exercise at this point? Cheers. Collect (talk) 21:11, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
Collect, these are all great questions for scholarly work, therefore irrelevant for Dean. If we look at "Political Conservatism as Motivated Social Cognition" in Google Scholar, we find 1029 citations. Not bad for niche work. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 21:26, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
Unfortunately - the links are not for Dean's work. Try noting that Jost != Dean. And to claim that Dean is somehow exempt from requirements that we try to avoid fringe POVs, is sans raison utterly. Jost's paper does not support your claims that social conservatives are homophobic authoritanians. In fact, the term "social conservative" never appears in Jost's work at all. But you draw consultions from it about "social conservatives"? Sorry -- that is ten steps past OR. Collect (talk) 21:38, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
To repeat, Dean's book should be judged as a book, not a scholarly paper. If you want to judge a scholarly paper, Jost is available. Got it? Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 21:41, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
And Jost does not back up your claims about the truth. Izzat clear enough? Using a source for what it does not state is contrary to WP:V. Has been. Will be. Cheers. Collect (talk) 21:58, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
I'm getting the distinct impression that you didn't read Jost at all, because nothing you said here is true. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 02:56, 9 August 2012 (UTC)
John Dean's book is a piece of political advocacy and as such could be used as a source that the accusation is made, but not that it is generally accepted by neutral parties. The issue with the other two sources, obviously, is whether they are going to be considered neutral enough. It is possible to find criticism of Altemeyer's RWA scale in the literature, as in this paper which found his scale correlated mostly with conservatism and not so much with authoritarianism. Mangoe (talk) 21:26, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
Thank you for discussing this in terms of sources. I'm aware of the article you linked to. Based on its citation count, it's a minority (but not fringe) view. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 21:31, 8 August 2012 (UTC)

───────────────────────── Can someone please explain what this argument is about?

  • Some editors wanted to include Stenner's work. OK, she's still in the article.
  • Some editors objected to the implication that SC is inherently authoritarian. OK, those opinions have been dialed-down and are now attributed to those who say so.
  • Some editors objected to "authoritarian" being in the lead. OK, it's been taken out.

What's left to argue about? Everybody should be happy. Belchfire-TALK 21:18, 8 August 2012 (UTC)

What's left to argue about, is the fact that Collect deleted everything he disagreed with earlier today. It's back...but that was the catalyst for today's arguments. --Bryon Morrigan -- Talk 21:36, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
Instead of attacking Stenner, Altemeyer, etc., whose books are reliable sources, we should look at what the sources actually say. Stenner merely says that by authoritarianism she means what was defined as "social conservatism" by Glenn Wilson and John Patterson in "A new measure of conservatism" (1968) and Wilson in The psychology of conservatism (1973).[16] The other source is a book review about a book by John Dean (not Altemeyer). Dean was writing about a specific group within the U.S. not social conservatism in general.[17] This article is just original research, with editors adding anything that has ever been called social conservatism. We need to identify a topic for the article and determine which sources are relevant. TFD (talk) 21:30, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
I don't think we can exclude sources just because they're in English and/or are about America. If we have sources suggesting that social conservatism outside of America isn't authoritarian, we should include those as well. Also, I think you misinterpret Stenner radically; I suggest that you look more closely at what she's actually saying. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 21:33, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
One more thing: the Jost paper is explicitly not limited to America. Read this abstract:
Analyzing political conservatism as motivated social cognition integrates theories of personality (authoritarianism, dogmatism—intolerance of ambiguity), epistemic and existential needs (for closure, regulatory focus, terror management), and ideological rationalization (social dominance, systemjustification). A meta-analysis (88 samples, 12 countries, 22,818 cases) confirms that several psychological variables predict political conservatism: death anxiety (weighted mean r = .50); system instability (.47); dogmatism—intolerance of ambiguity (.34); openness to experience (—.32); uncertainty tolerance (—.27); needs for order, structure, and closure (.26); integrative complexity (—.20); fear of threat and loss (.18); and self-esteem (—.09). The core ideology of conservatism stresses resistance to change and justification of inequality and is motivated by needs that vary situationally and dispositionally to manage uncertainty and threat.
See? Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 21:34, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
In looking through the Jost paper, I see that he refers to some of Jay's other papers and acknowledges Jay as someone who disagrees with him. But then he cites Jay as supporting the thesis that the RWA scale correlates with conservatism while ignoring Jay's other point: that there's no particular correlation with authoritarian urges. Mangoe (talk) 03:28, 9 August 2012 (UTC)
Well, I read through it and it doesn't appear that your summary is at all accurate. Why is that? Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 03:44, 9 August 2012 (UTC)
I did not give a summary, so I do not see how this response is cogent. Mangoe (talk) 14:25, 9 August 2012 (UTC)
Well, actually, you did summarize part of it, so it's a least a summary of an extract. Regardless, it doesn't fit in with what the paper as a whole says; it's original research by you. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 03:02, 10 August 2012 (UTC)
Because you don't understand English? That can clearly be seen on my talk page. (And, before you accuse me of WP:NPA; you asked a question, and I gave the best answer I can.) — Arthur Rubin (talk) 06:31, 9 August 2012 (UTC)
I don't really need to accuse you; anyone can see for themselves that this was a personal attack. Telling anyone whose native language is English that they don't understand English is an insult. You've insulted me in this particular way twice so far, and I'm sure it'll come up in an RFC/U. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 03:01, 10 August 2012 (UTC)
How am I supposed to know your native language is English? You still don't act as if you understand English. This leads to two possibilities:
  1. You don't understand English.
  2. You understand the clear statements I'm saying, and are acting as if you didn't.
Per WP:AGF, I have been assuming the first. You could convince me that the second is correct. — Arthur Rubin (talk) 06:13, 11 August 2012 (UTC)

─────────────────────────Funny, this doesn't look like an apology. Most people apologize when they've unintentionally insulted someone else. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 16:38, 11 August 2012 (UTC)

I can't think of anything I can say which is (1) at all accurate, (2) helpful in improving Wikipedia, and (3) not an insult (in your opinion). — Arthur Rubin (talk) 17:08, 11 August 2012 (UTC)
So, even with WP:AGF, you're saying the insult is intentional? Good to know. I'll bookmark this for later. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 17:33, 11 August 2012 (UTC)
I'm saying that it's an observation of your actions. Assuming good faith, I cannot find a conclusion other than you cannot understand simple English. Perhaps you can explain. — Arthur Rubin (talk) 19:01, 11 August 2012 (UTC)
In the words of the Gipper, there you go again.[18] Given half a chance, you resort to insult. Can't you do better than this?
It's obvious that English is my native language, although there's some question about whether it's American or Commonwealth (and I won't say). I've explained to you that English is my native language. I even shared something about my professional life by mentioning that I've been paid to write material in English which has then been published. In this context, there's just no way you can deny that I understand English, except as an insult.
I don't think I'm being particularly sensitive, but even if you think I am, it's rude to continue making this claim after I've pointed out (at least thrice now) that I find it insulting. Should I got to WP:WQA over this or do I need to go higher than that to compel you to remain civil? Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 19:26, 11 August 2012 (UTC)
By all means go to WQA - but recall the eensy possibility that your edits also may get looked at. Cheers. Collect (talk) 20:04, 11 August 2012 (UTC)
Arthur, you look different. New haircut? Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 20:15, 11 August 2012 (UTC)
Wikipedia uses "four tildes" to create a datestamped signature of an editor. My signature is "Collect" and is not "Arthur Rubin" though I can see that you are easily confused <g>. Your comment, if meant in jest, is totally useless here, as my comment was serious. Perhaps you should read up on on-line etiquette. Cheers. Collect (talk) 21:17, 11 August 2012 (UTC)
Well, who you are isn't as important as what you are, and you're an expert at on-line etiquette. As such an expert, could you help me understand whether it's a breach of said etiquette to repeatedly assert that someone doesn't understand the language when it's clear that they do? Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 21:30, 11 August 2012 (UTC)
I have only been on-line for a tad over three decades - but I suspect that Arthur can be irascible (albeit generally quite politely so) when he finds an editor being a teensy bit more tendentious than he is used to. I would you suggest you stay well clear of Andy the Grump, by the way. Cheers. Collect (talk) 21:55, 11 August 2012 (UTC)
Well, I hope he doesn't encounter too many tendentious editors. Fortunately, I'm not one, but I guess that he might have bumped into some that affected his mood. Still, I wouldn't call him a "grump". That would be about as insulting as suggesting I don't understand English. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 21:58, 11 August 2012 (UTC)

───────────────────────── Hey, while we're discussing manners, maybe ^Emily Post^ here can clue us in on use of the term "teabaggers" - widely seen as pejorative - when one knows full well that said "teabaggers" are in attendance. And maybe also how such use of that term might affect one's chances of persuading others - particularly the "teabaggers" - to take a sympathetic views towards one's arguments. Since you know all about "being insulted," I'm sure the opinions of such an expert in online etiquette will be most informative. Belchfire-TALK 22:13, 11 August 2012 (UTC)

Insulted? Breitbart says they should be proud. [19] Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 23:02, 11 August 2012 (UTC)

Tea Party[edit]

I'm pretty sure that this dumb conversation was discussed somewhere where I read it and it was opposed on that basis. I'm sure Belchfire can chime in. ViriiK (talk) 19:50, 12 August 2012 (UTC)

Ah yes I was correct. The discussion was held here instead which it refers to this page[20]. ViriiK (talk) 20:03, 12 August 2012 (UTC)
It was also discussed above, at number 17.[21] --Bryon Morrigan -- Talk 20:06, 12 August 2012 (UTC)
That's what I was also going to put up since I knew I've read the discussions before. It appears to be that they ignored those discussions and proceeded to edit-war them in which they failed to follow the pattern of BRD and just went to BRRRRR. ViriiK (talk) 20:07, 12 August 2012 (UTC)
That's true. The section ends with a large copy-and-paste of the Pew Research source, by me. Since nobody could say anything against it, it looks like we have a consensus to mention the Tea Party. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 20:11, 12 August 2012 (UTC)
Well, no, you weren't correct. As I pointed out in my initial response, this was settled by citations that overwhelmed the original thinking on Talk:Tea Party movement. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 20:08, 12 August 2012 (UTC)

Last I checked, I was suggesting that I'd be willing to soften the wording to suggest that the Tea Party is largely or predominately conservative socially. No response, so I left the wording alone. Then you and Belchfire started edit-warring over it. There was some controversy about inclusion earlier, but it was settled when CartoonDiablo came up with strong citations. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 19:55, 12 August 2012 (UTC)

Bryon, could you weigh in on what you think we should do about this issue? Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 20:40, 12 August 2012 (UTC)

Gun ownership?[edit]

In the lead in it states that Social conservatives in many countries generally favour gun ownership. I'd like to see some references for that. As far as I know, outside the American continent there would be hardly any significant Social conservative movements that advocate the advancement of gun ownership. At least in Europe (within the Christian democrat parties, which form the biggest political family on the continent) the opposite is generally true. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:13, 10 October 2012 (UTC)

Supposedly, it's not really same for every country. InfocenterM (talk) 14:04, 9 August 2013 (UTC)

This page has been mutilated into meaninglessness...[edit]

Thanks mostly to Collect and an IP, the article basically doesn't tell anyone what positions are Socially Conservative. Thanks, guys. You help keep the ignorance flowing! Keep on deleting everything that doesn't fit within your worldview, as that's EXACTLY what Wikipedia is for! You must feel so proud. --Bryon Morrigan -- Talk 18:49, 19 December 2012 (UTC)

Have to agree. This article has had virtually all definition of Social Conservatism removed, being filled instead with waffle that tells you very little about what Social Conservatism involves in practice. It used to contain the following, which was far more useful:

"Social conservatives in many countries generally: favor the pro-life position in the abortion controversy; oppose all forms of and wish to ban embryonic stem cell research ; oppose both eugenics (inheritable genetic modification) and human enhancement (transhumanism) while supporting bioconservatism; support a traditional definition of marriage as being one man and one woman; view the nuclear family model as society's foundational unit; oppose expansion of civil marriage and child adoption rights to couples in same-sex relationships; promote public morality and traditional family values; oppose secularism and privatization of religious belief; support the prohibition of drugs, prostitution, premarital sex, non-marital sex and euthanasia; and support the censorship of pornography and what they consider to be obscenity or indecency."

FurryAminal (talk) 07:24, 25 April 2013 (UTC)

Social conservatism in different countries[edit]

More countries can be added? InfocenterM (talk) 14:30, 9 August 2013 (UTC)

Positions of social conservatives[edit]

I see that information about what social conservatives actually support was removed from this article some time ago. Since I think it’s essential to have this information in the article, I’m putting a suggestion here for a section describing the positions social conservatives generally hold. If there are any objections to any of these they can be raised here. If there are no objections I’ll had it to the article.

Social conservatives in many countries generally:

  • Oppose multiculturalism, and support restrictions on, and lower levels of immigration (especially from non-Western countries)
  • Adhere to law and order politics, supporting tougher criminal sentences, a focus on retributive justice and deterrence, and may support the death penalty
  • Support defining marriage as a union of one man and one woman, with restrictions on divorce
  • Favour the pro-life position in opposing abortion, euthanasia, and embryonic stem cell research
  • Support the public promotion and advancement of religion by the state, which may include maintaining an established state church, supporting prayers and religious instruction in government schools, supporting the placement of religious symbols on public property (e.g. crosses, nativity scenes, or ten commandments monuments), supporting prayers before parliamentary or legislative sessions, supporting tax exemptions for churches and public funding for religious schools, and enacting laws against behaviour considered antithetical to traditional religious doctrines (e.g. homosexuality, prostitution, or business or entertainment on Sundays)
  • Support the censorship of pornography, obscenity and violence in the mass media
  • Support vocationally based education, private schools, homeschooling, and corporal punishment
  • Support the continued prohibition of recreational or medically non-beneficial drugs, as well as restrictions on the availability of alcohol (such as pub closing times, or higher drinking ages)
  • Oppose affirmative action and anti-discrimination laws
  • Support loyalty to the family, respect for one’s elders, and full autonomy of parents in raising and disciplining their children
  • Oppose gun control and support gun ownership
  • Support the established monarchy, opposing republicanism
  • Focus on public morality, involving a belief that public figures should be judged on their private moral indiscretions, and that the government should promote aspects of the traditional Judeo-Christian moral code though educational curricula and the criminal law
  • Support local autonomy and oppose centralisation of power, which may involve support for national sovereignty, states’ rights, and maximum autonomy for towns and cities
  • Support traditional gender roles
  • Support patriotism and military conscription
  • Oppose special rights or different laws for indigenous communities, and oppose official apologies or recognition of indigenous peoples
  • Oppose a statutory or constitutional bill of rights

Colonial Overlord (talk) 04:30, 1 November 2014 (UTC)

You would need a source that supports your views according to Wikipedia policy. What evidence by the way is there that social conservatives oppose bills of rights? TFD (talk) 04:58, 1 November 2014 (UTC)
Well, here in Australia a few years ago a proposed bill of rights was abandoned after extensive lobbying against it led by the Australian Christian Lobby, a prominent socially conservative organisation. I would assume that this isn't the only country where such opposition exists.
Regarding sources, surely not every point needs a source, just the contentious ones. Which is why I'm putting this here so people can identify what they think the contentious claims are. Colonial Overlord (talk) 15:44, 1 November 2014 (UTC)
Since Australia is the only Western democracy without a bill of rights, it is difficult to generalize to the rest of the world. I think the position of social conservatives in the rest of the world is that "activist judges" misuse these bills to legislate from the bench. But the position of social conservatives is not to repeal these bills but to appoint judges who interpret them correctly. They actually support guaranteed freedom of religion (for themselves at least), but do not understand why that should mean they cannot have school prayers.
In fact the list of points itself needs a source.
TFD (talk) 16:05, 1 November 2014 (UTC)

Liberal party[edit]

People need to stop adding the Liberal Party of Australia. Read the above list I proposed of positions of social conservatives and name one that the Liberal Party officially holds. The party supports multiculturalism, opposes the death penalty, supports gun control, and supports indigenous rights. Contentious "moral" issues like abortion and euthanasia are invariably subject to a conscience vote, with the exception of gay marriage which almost certainly will be the next time it comes up. And if the fact that there are many social conservatives in the liberal party qualifies it for inclusion, then the Labor party should be included as well. Colonial Overlord (talk) 06:12, 12 January 2015 (UTC)

Just because you came up with a list does not make it the definitive list of socially conservative policies; you are not a political expert. Just to satisfy the needs of your list however, the Liberal Party does in fact fit into some of your points:
  • Support defining marriage as a union of one man and one woman
  • Favour pro-life position on euthanasia
  • Support the religious instruction in government schools, supporting prayers before parliamentary or legislative sessions, supporting tax exemptions for churches and public funding for religious schools
  • Support private schools
  • Support the established monarchy, opposing republicanism

I will only repeat it once more, please, read the page of the Liberal Party and you will clearly see that is is a socially conservative page.Andreas11213 (talk) 08:15, 12 January 2015 (UTC)

  • Subject to a conscience vote
  • Subject to a conscience vote
  • So does Labor
  • So does Labor
  • Some do, some don't (e.g Malcolm Turnbull). Do you have evidence that this an official party position?
I thought my list was fairly comprehensive but if you have other policies that you think are socially conservative and that the Liberal Party supports I would be happy to hear them. Colonial Overlord (talk) 08:43, 12 January 2015 (UTC)
  • Same sex marriage is currently not subject to a conscience vote
  • Introduced legislation banning euthanasia in the 1990's and has not touched the subject since
  • Labor does not support religious instruction in schools
  • So what if Labor does, that's one socially conservative party. Practically 99% of all their other polcicies are socially liberal
  • It's party policy and Tony Abbott strongly supports the monarchy
Regardless of what you think of your list, it is not the definitive list of social conservatism. I have already given you multiple examples of socially conservative Liberal Party policies. Read the page itself and you will see it is socially conservative.Andreas11213 (talk) 09:42, 12 January 2015 (UTC)
The only relevant question is whether sources call it socially conservative. Do they? If so then it belongs, and if not then it doesn't. Trying to determine whether it fits based on their positions is WP:OR. Noformation Talk 08:54, 12 January 2015 (UTC)
The sources on the page of the Liberal Party itself suggest it is socially conservative, if Colonial Overlord cared to read it.Andreas11213 (talk) 09:42, 12 January 2015 (UTC)
Personally I can't be arsed to read it. Does it specifically say "socially conservative?" If so then that's that. If not, are there high quality sources that use that term? I don't know if by "suggests" you mean that it's explicitly stated or if you mean it can be inferred; if it's the former you're golden but if it's the latter then not so much. Noformation Talk 10:21, 12 January 2015 (UTC)
I added a reference to the list. I quote: "The Liberal Party of Australia (Liberals) consolidated previous liberal-conservative forces in 1945, combining elements of' laissez-faire economic liberalism with small l social liberal and social conservative values [...] In 1996 it won government under John Howard in coalition with the socially conservative National Party [...] The party shifted significantly to the right, and over four terms of government it pursued socially conservative policies in industrial relations, education, Indigenous affairs, multiculturalism, drug policy, and asylum seekers." Overlord's bias can't fight real facts. Stamboliyski (talk) 18:48, 12 January 2015 (UTC)
The first sentence says it combined social conservatism with small-l liberalism (often used as the opposite of social conservatism, subject to the caveat I mention below), thus saying the party has socially conservative elements along with progressive elements. The second sentence says the National party is socially conservative, which is already in the article and not disputed. The third says the party pursued socially conservative policies. I'm sure I could easily find a source saying that Labor has pursued socially conservative policies. Should Labor then be listed as well?
Also, i suggest you assume good faith and not accuse other editors of being biased merely because they disagree with you, unless of course you have evidence that they are biased aside from the fact that they disagree with you. Colonial Overlord (talk) 11:15, 13 January 2015 (UTC)
  • Actually whether there is a conscience vote or not will be a matter for the party room when the issue next comes up.
  • That was a private member's bill subject to a conscience vote, supported by many Labor MPs.
  • Source please.
  • I think you mean socially progressive. While the two are often equivalent, some policies are both socially conservative and socially liberal (e.g. gun rights). Also there's nothing particularly "liberal" about same-sex marriage.
  • Source please. Colonial Overlord (talk) 11:15, 13 January 2015 (UTC)
I do not think many if any of the parties listed are "social conservative parties," as defined in the article. The Liberals are more socially conservative than Labor, yet Labor has been socially conservative too. But social conservatism is not its ideology - liberals can be socially conservative too. So can communists and fascists for that matter. TFD (talk) 19:04, 12 January 2015 (UTC)

I can't believe i'm actually agreeing with Andreas here (and John Howard for that matter!), and that it's even being debated. The Liberal Party of Australia has socially conservative tendencies with WP:RS everywhere to support it. Pick your RS. Don't even need to go past first page. Timeshift (talk) 03:29, 7 March 2015 (UTC)

Enh. At the very least it's worth mentioning that, while the Liberal Party has always had a majority of social conservatives, it has equally always had a minority of social liberals (people like Alan Missen, Chris Puplick and Ian Macphee historically, and like Simon Birmingham, Sue Boyce and Teresa Gambaro more recently). It has always been the minority (and has usually been seen to be shrinking, but never quite disappeared), but when Liberals talk about a "broad church", it's not entirely spin.
I think this is a reflection of the fact that the Australian party system has never been based on social issues, but on economic ones. There are people in the Labor Party (Chris Hayes, Jacinta Collins, most famously Joe Bullock) who are much more socially conservative than the social liberals I mentioned above in the Liberal Party. I tend to think it's probably best to leave it out, since it's a complicated issue. Frickeg (talk) 04:08, 7 March 2015 (UTC)
What individual MPs believe in, and what the party does in government, are two different things. For example, if Turnbull was to become PM, I can tell you, the policy ideology would remain the same, there would be no liberalisation. The conservatives have been the strong majority for decades and that doesn't look to end any time soon. Liberal Party small-l liberals are nearing non-existence. As I said, there's many reliable sources. Timeshift (talk) 04:17, 7 March 2015 (UTC)
The majority, yes, but not the whole party. Unless I am much mistaken, social conservatism is nowhere enshrined as part of the Liberals' inalienable identity. As for "what it does", well, that's debatable. The 18C stuff might have outraged the left, but was it really "socially conservative"? What about paid parental leave? As for the sources, you'll notice John Howard is talking about his ideology, not the Liberal Party's. And in my opinion, none of the sources on the first page of that Google search (an inherently flawed one, since it is targeted at sources that prove a particular thing, rather than a range of sources and coming to a consensus) are RSes that say the Liberal Party itself is conservative (plenty of them say Howard is, but that's another matter). A more proper search reveals, on its first page, at least 1 that calls it socially conservative, and by my count at least 3 sources that suggest, by implication or directly, that it would be inaccurate to call the Liberals "socially conservative" inherently (including the Liberal federal platform). At the very least there is disagreement here. Anyway, I'm inclined to agree with TFD above that many other parties listed here really shouldn't be, and I further think that the list itself may well be a bad idea. Frickeg (talk) 06:16, 7 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Gotta agree with Andreas11213 and Timeshift on this one. Colonial Overlord, we don't define things ourselves here, we go by what other sources say, and so long as other sources claim the Liberal party to be socially conservative that is what we should have in the article. If you want to argue that there are facets of their ideology of platform that aren't, I'd suggest a note would be the way to go. ColonialGrid (talk) 06:08, 7 March 2015 (UTC)
I don't think a note is warranted. Nobody says the Liberal Party's social ideology is a purist form of conservatism. Timeshift (talk) 06:16, 7 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Sure, but it wouldn't hurt and it would give a chance to appease Colonial Overlord and add mention of the 'broad church' mentality of the Liberal party. I don't really care either way, but suggested it as a peace offering. ColonialGrid (talk) 06:41, 7 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Quick search on the internet has found the following which describe the Liberal party and/or its leadership as socially conservative: [22] [23] [24] [25] [26] [27] [28] [29]. These sources are from a variety of of viewpoints and shows a general attitude the Liberals are at least somewhat socially conservative, pursuing socially conservative agendas, or lead by socially conservative figures. ColonialGrid (talk) 06:36, 7 March 2015 (UTC)
It is not hugely important what standard is used to list a party as socially conservative as long as it is applied consistently. If references to the Libs having socially conservative members or having implemented such policies qualifies it for inclusion then the ALP should be listed if there are sources for similar claims about them. However, I think the best standard to use is the party's official policies, meaning we need sources calling either the party itself or its policies overall socially conservative. The important point was made by Frickeg above that social issues are not very important in Australian politics, and so both majors basically ignore them. Contrast say the American Republican party which is full of official policies for constitutional bans of gay marriage, passing laws against abortion, getting rid of affirmative action programs and so on. Not so here: there is a reason DLP, One Nation, Family First etc exist; there'd be no need for such parties if the liberals were a consistently socially conservative party. Colonial Overlord (talk) 14:09, 7 March 2015 (UTC)
Do you have RS that describe the ALP as socially conservative? Also note that this is on the Liberal party website and does describe the Liberal party under the Howard years as socially conservative. ColonialGrid (talk) 14:37, 7 March 2015 (UTC)
No it describes Howard's own philosophy as socially conservative, according to himself. Given that his euthanasia and abortion beliefs were subject to conscience vote, that he allowed the republic referendum despite his own views, and that his marriage act amendments were supported by the opposition, there is little justification for inferring the party as a whole as socially conservative because of Howard. Colonial Overlord (talk) 15:39, 7 March 2015 (UTC)

Islamism is not conservatism[edit]

References to islamist organisations should be removed from this page, as islamism is incompatible with the political ideology conservatism.

@Tomaten: I will try and not enter not a forum territory but the Islamist organizations mentioned in the article have been categorized as socially conservative. - SantiLak (talk) 22:33, 9 September 2017 (UTC)
It could also be that social conservatism is incompatible with the political ideology conservatism. Historically it was tied to liberalism. TFD (talk) 01:03, 10 September 2017 (UTC)


I would also put the AfD into that category. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:22, 11 January 2018 (UTC)