As I write this blog, we as Americans are about to go to the polls and cast our vote for local issues, State Constitution Amendments, local leaders, State elected officers, US Senators, and every one of the 435 House of Representatives in the US Congress. There is no presidential election this year, yet it is clear that the Democrat Party is trying to make this about President Trump. It is as if they are trying to convince America that we made a mistake in 2016. No matter what the political affiliation is, it is clear that the interest in these midterms is at historic levels.
This blog post certainly references the current societal and political discourse but certainly, the beliefs expressed here are timeless and can be applied to any election season.
America is unique. There is no democratic republic like it on Earth. Never has there been, never will there be. Our Constitution and Bill of Rights have been models for democratic societies around the globe for generations. The principles of freedom and liberty, while not born in America, have become our bedrock for the American experience since the 18th century. It is fragile and must be preserved. To paraphrase Ronald Reagan,
“Freedom does not pass down through the bloodstream.”
The very principle of "We the People" implies that we, the citizens of the United States, are to govern ourselves. Limited, self-government is the construct for all Americans to have the freedom of self-determination. In a democratic republic, the government works for us. If we don't like the people we elected to represent us then we don't need a military coup or a violent revolution to remove them from office, we simply elect new representatives. Make no mistake, this is a radical idea in global geopolitical history.
Political leaders are supposed to serve the people; all people, regardless of political ideology.
Unfortunately, career politicians seem to care more about power than they do about the country and the people they represent. Corruption and elitism should not be allowed to exist. The people should replace them.
All citizens have a civic duty and the privilege to be informed and to vote for their representatives. This right and privilege that US citizens have, has been bought and paid for in the blood of patriots through the generations of American history, to preserve our Constitutional Republic, the rule of law and our freedom. This right should not be taken lightly. We the people go to the polls to have a say in who will lead our country, write our laws, and preserve our American values.
We have a choice of who will guide our local, state, and federal government. There's great division in our country today. Two different ideologies wrestling over what is the future of America. Political and societal tension is nothing new to America. When Ronald Reagan was sworn in as president of the United States in January 1981, he inherited a very divided country, high unemployment, high taxes, racial tension, hyperinflation, and a population that saw a weak United States on the world stage. President Reagan's belief was stated in his inaugural address:
“In the present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem, government is the problem!"
His belief was in a return to a limited government approach and giving more power back to the people. His eight years in office saw a prosperous and robust America that history sees as a time of relative peace, prosperity, and prestige on the world stage.
America today is a diverse country with many cultures, customs, and beliefs. However, we are Americans and we should celebrate our commonality, our shared values and the blessings of liberty. We should be grateful to stand on the shoulders of our forefathers who risked their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor so we can live in a free country.
Unfortunately, even in a time of relative peace and great prosperity in America, there is tremendous division and strife in our country. These statistics tell a compelling story:
Over 4% growth in the economy
Salary and wage growth highest in 10 years
Job openings top 7 million for the first time
Effectively a full employment economy
Black, Hispanic and women unemployment is historically low
Home ownership is up
Consumer confidence is up
Minority business start-ups are up
Americans are receiving more of their paycheck
The list goes on and on.
So why such hatred and hostility? It seems like civility is dead. Forgiveness and grace are nonexistent. Respect for others and their opinions is a thing of the past. Name-calling and personal disparagement are the default reactions to people they disagree with because they aren't willing to listen to other views or welcome civil public intellectual discourse. Freedom of speech is only allowed when an opponent agrees with their ideology. Tolerance seems to only apply to group-think. Identity politics is a tool to keep Americans fighting against each other while animosity, anger, hatred, and fear seem to be desired outcomes of political groups.
Those who are out of power and want desperately to get it back, inflict carnage on the American society.
Those of us who fly the flag, encourage civility, honor our heroes, protect our borders, promote the rule of law, defend the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, free speech, the Second Amendment, and religious liberties are called extremists, terrorists, racists, bigots, xenophobes, white supremacists and on and on. Minorities who care to think on their own are equally disparaged and written off. The screaming, the fear tactics, the threat of violence, and lack of civility were on full display during the Kavanaugh hearings.
The hostility of violent mobs, lack of decency, and lack of respect is not going away. Politicians like Hillary Clinton, Eric Holder, Cory Booker, Maxine Waters, along with many Hollywood personalities, not only seem to condone this behavior but also encourage it.
Socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is on record as calling her political enemies “monsters”, “xenophobes”, and “brutal white supremacists.” So much for encouraging intellectual public argument and discourse over policies. Since they can't win that argument the only way to harvest votes is through fear tactics, division, and sowing anger and hatred. This is heading to a place where someone is going to get killed. This is a threat to our society and republic. Many mainstage media personalities are no better and they no longer try to hide their biases and disagreement with the result of the 2016 election.
Aleksandr I. Solzhenitsyn was an outspoken critic of the Soviet Union and communism. His words ring true today:
“It's a universal law -- intolerance is the first sign of an inadequate education. An ill-educated person behaves with arrogant impatience, whereas truly profound education breeds humility.”
In conclusion, so much is riding on this election. Our obligation as voters is to be informed. We as citizens must learn to think for ourselves. Your vote and the votes of others like you will determine what role government will play in our lives. We must look beyond political speeches, opinions of uneducated peers, social media, propaganda, fear tactics, and hate speech.
“If we lose freedom here, there is no place to escape to. This is the last stand on earth.” Ronald Reagan, Oct 27, 1964
So what is it that we must vote for? Consider these principles as you vote:
For righteous and moral leaders
For political statesmen and women who will pledge civility and respectful intellectual public discourse and dialogue with people they differ with in order to solve problems for the greater good
Selfless, factionless political leaders
For leaders who do what's right, not what's politically expedient
For leaders who love America, our Constitution, and our heritage
For leaders who respect the rule of law
For leaders who understand and appreciate the gift of freedom and liberty. No government or man gives us our rights but they are inalienable
Capitalism and not socialism
For honor, integrity, and living by the Golden Rule
For political leaders who know they are servants of the people and not the other way around
For leaders who promote free enterprise and the opportunity to rise up the economic ladder because of hard work and personal initiative
For religious freedom
It is your country. Be responsible. Be informed. Now vote.
Authored by Joe Markiewicz - Defender Gear Contributor