Friday, November 7, 2008

My Post Election Umbrage

I know there are a lot of conservatives out there who are feeling downtrodden and depressed. I, personally, began to wonder if I was a jinx on anyone for whom I voted... until I realized that Virginia Foxx did, indeed, win her re-election bid. Finally! ONE person I voted for managed to eke out a win. 

One would think that an Obama win would be what caused me to take offense. Not the case, however. I'm not offended by his win. And he won by enough of a margin that I'm not even inclined to think ACORN cheated him in. Nor am I the type to say that the man "bought the White House" as some have. True, he had plenty of money to campaign with -- but while he outspent McCain, he also out-messaged him. Barack Obama had a message that the American people wanted to hear. (Not this American person, but obviously more wanted to hear it than not.)

McCain could have clearly articulated the opposing view and made a more distinct choice for the American people. He chose not to do that and instead rushed in the middle of his campaign to broker a bailout the American people clearly didn't want. So no - I'm not offended by an Obama win. 

I am, however, deeply offended by the news media. Well, the media and the shameless people who are namelessly attacking Sarah Palin. "Anonymous critics" shouldn't be quoted in the press. Period. You have a complaint about somebody? You want to air a grievance? Fine... I can get that. But have the balls to attach your good (or not so good?) name to the petty plunder. The fact that the press is gleefully reporting on this is, at best, irresponsible journalism. 

In light of this and other events, I would like to take this opportunity to bring an old and much more positive discourse to the people.

In 1917, William Tyler Page of Maryland wrote the American's Creed. It goes like this:

I believe in the United States of America as a government of the people, by the people, for the people; whose just powers are derived from the consent of the governed; a democracy in a Republic; a sovereign Nation of many sovereign States; a perfect Union, one and inseparable; established upon those principles of freedom, equality, justice, and humanity for which American patriots sacrificed their lives and fortunes.
I therefore believe it is my duty to my country to love it; to support its Constitution; to obey its laws; to respect its flag; and to defend it against all enemies.

I, too, choose to align myself with the American's Creed. An election that didn't go my way is not enough to dampen my love for my country or my hope for its future. We are still a democracy in a Republic. We still have voting rights and the power of the people. What we need is to educate the American public in regards to American heritage and civics. 

There are five main principles on which our country was built that contributed to our success as a nation.

1. Our belief in God. In answering to a power higher than ourselves or our government, we had a higher sense of personal responsibility.
2. Limited government. Limiting government limits national expenses and gives surplus capital for tools and a good living standard.
3. Individual freedom. Each person could work at what they chose.
4. Incentive. Each person had the right to keep the fruits of their own labor. 
5. Competition. This is the one thing that makes businessman and employee alike serve his fellow man well.

These principles were put into writing by Walter Knott of Knott's Berry Farms. Along with these principles, Mr. Knott also had this to say:

America became a place where the common man could be uncommon, where a man could become whatever his energy, his intellect and his manhood could make him. This was the challenge, the hope, and the American  heritage that touched and inspired hearts everywhere.

That freedom which our founding fathers gained for us is the cornerstone upon which this nation is built. We in America have been able to deliver in unbelievable abundance what Marxism, collectivism, Socialism and fascism can only promise. But freedom rests, and always will, on individual responsibility, courage, and faith. It was exactly these qualities which have made the United States the most prosperous nation the world has ever known.

What truly concerns me is that for two centuries, because of the individual strength of each citizen, we guarded and nurtured our hard-won freedom. Gradually, though, as we have become more prosperous, we have also become less willing to shoulder individual responsibilities. More and more, we have become content to let the government do what the individual should do. Either we will again assume the responsibility required by freedom or that light will go out in America. And if it does, it will go out all over the world. If the wealth, luxury and leisure that our system has brought us make us smug and complacent, willing to load our responsibilities on our government, we will lose - and deserve to lose - all these fruits of freedom.

Alexis de Tocqueville concluded about our nation's success, "America is great because she is good; when America ceases to be good, then she will cease to be great."

William O. Douglas, a liberal Supreme Court justice, wrote in 1952, "We are a religious people whose institutions presuppose a Supreme Being." We are becoming less and less a religious people - and while many in America still assume they answer to a Supreme Being, that Being is looking less and less like any sort of God of the Bible. 

Daniel Webster said, "God grants liberty only to those who love it and are always ready to guard and defend it."

Calivn Coolidge reminded us, "The meaning of America is not to be found in a life without toil. Freedom is not only bought with a great price; it is maintained by unremitting effort."

How many people in America today have even heard quotes such as these, much less have them implanted into their memories? Without the people being educated in these areas, there is no hope for America's future. It is, thus, our responsibility to do all within our power to educate through positive political discourse. Because, as Edmund Burke put it, "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing."

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