Jonathan Heidt has an article in the New York Times Forget the Money, Follow the Sacredness, where he tries to simplify the left and right. I have a feeling that he leans right because of they way his simplifications lead.
Haidt writes, for instance, “For the American left, African-Americans, women and other victimized groups are the sacred objects at the center of the story.” While that may be true to some extent – it implies that anyone who is not a woman or black or victimized does not count. Which is not true. And his summation does not follow the quote that he posts from Notre Dame sociologist Christian Smith.
It is a more positive description to say that Equality is the sacred object in the center. And Life (actual life, not unborn life). And yes – the Environment is sacred as well. Equality (non-discrimiation, equal-opportunity to go to college, to access health care, etc.), Life (& health), and the Environment. That is more encompassing than being about women, blacks and victims. And it also describes the left better.
For Conservatives, (white) Male-supremacy and their control of the world is the sacred element. It is referred to in terms of “religion and the traditional family” – but the religion they speak of – conservative versions of Christianity is all about Male-supremacy and control. The “traditional (white) family”, “strict father” ideas are all a part of that – so of course women and minority groups are especially going to rebel against that.
Haidt does not mention the (white) Male-supremacy aspect of the conservative message (possibly because he is a white male) – and without that aspect – the parts where Conservatives see Liberals as “Devils” makes less sense. As does the part where Liberals are upset with Conservatives – which is more understandable when you know how and why Conservatives are against equality.
Conservatives also against concern for the environment – because they think that their religion expects them to dominate the earth and they think that means that they have free-reign to do whatever.
The Conservative leaders are also very much about control. Where Liberals understand and accept that people are different, have different or no religion, have different sexual preferences, etc., Conservatives do not. Liberals would be happy to accept Conservative lifestyles as long as those Conservatives were not trying to control and restrict everybody else.
So yes – it may be a “Holy War” of sorts as Haidt says – he just doesn’t understand the sides.