by Mike Kersmarki
To me, being a Republican has always been an easy call. It’s my life and I should have the freedom to decide how to live it. These choices belong to me, not some faceless, unelected bureaucrat in Washington.
The Grand Old Party, while certainly far from perfect, understands those principles of individual liberty and limited government to a far greater degree than the Democratic Party, at least the one now controlled by so-called progressives.
“Federalism simply says that we trust the people in the states to govern themselves, but our national government should have the power to do things that states could not do on their own – like defend from foreign invasion or establish and regulate a national currency … (or) do business with one another across state lines.
The principles of individual liberty and limited government mean that there are certain areas of human activity that belong to individuals to decide, and that government should leave alone.”
Limited government. Individual liberty. My life has shown me so far that you really can’t have one without the other.
It really is that simple.
- Higher taxes? Less freedom to spend your own money.
- IRS regulating churches? Less free speech from the pulpit.
- Government-controlled healthcare? Less choice for your family.
Another reason I’m a Republican is that I strongly believe that Freedom and Liberty can co-exist with Fairness and Equality but only so long as all sides recognize that the Bill of Rights is a two-way street.
Many Liberals in the Democratic Party seem to passionately believe that you can’t have both.
Their passionate pursuit of ‘freedom from want’ means that any erosion of constitutionally protected liberties in the pursuit of their goals are acceptable losses.
To the Left, you should just shut up and accept their belief system, not your own.
Woe to the person who speaks out in support of their own core beliefs. And if you even dare to disagree with Washington’s attempts to mold your behavior, then you’re either a racist or sexist or homophobe or some other derisive name.
Don’t be fooled. Progressives today will resort to just about any tactic, including mocking and degrading opponents, instead of trying to have a civil discussion of the many, many problems our nation has to solve.
Think about that. Instead of trying to find solutions, many Liberals do everything they can – including violence – to suppress Free Speech.
“Today’s liberals seem bent on pushing people around, preventing them from speaking their minds and practicing their beliefs. It’s not just the language that’s changed.”
Our nation truly is at a crossroads.
- Will we stick with American capitalism or descend into European socialism and the tyranny that comes from big government, including the nanny state making life-or-death decisions about children instead of parents?
- Will we be allowed to engage in frank and honest debates on race, religion, gender, climate change, military preparedness or even illegal immigration (including its negative impact on the nation’s long-term environment) without being shouted down?
- Will we someday have to explain to our children and grandchildren how we enabled our federal government to subvert the very freedoms that so many have died to preserve?
If you truly believe in America, if you believe in the rights of the individual, if you believe that the government serves the people instead visa versa, what sacrifices are you and your family willing to make on the altar of Freedom?
That thought may have been best expressed in a letter written to a mother who lost at least two sons during the civil war. The letter is attributed to President Abraham Lincoln.
“Dear Madam: I have been shown in the files … that you are the mother of five sons who have died gloriously on the field of battle. I feel how weak and fruitless must be any word of mine which should attempt to beguile you from the grief of a loss so overwhelming. But I cannot refrain from tendering you the consolation that may be found in the thanks of the Republic they died to save. I pray that our heavenly Father may assuage the anguish of your bereavement, and leave you only the cherished memory of the loved and lost, and the solemn pride that must be yours to have laid so costly a sacrifice upon the altar of Freedom.”
- President Lincoln in a letter to Mrs. Bixby and famously dramatized in the movie, Saving Private Ryan.
Lincoln was the first Republican president and I will always believe, as Lincoln did, that the Republican Party offers the best chance to achieve the kind of peaceful and prosperous future that’s good for all Americans.
I’m proud to be a Republican and always will be.
“America is no longer an experiment. It is an accomplishment. Freedom works. You inherited it and you dare not neglect it … What you’re feeling is the pure pedigree of freedom, a lineage of liberty, conceived in the Magna Carta, proclaimed in the Declaration of Independence and guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution.”
- The late Charlton Heston, actor and dedicated defender of the second amendment.
Mike Kersmarki is an author in Tampa and is a member of the Hillsborough County Republican Executive Committee. He currently is writing a domestic policy book: “Worker’s Party: How to Help ALL Americans Achieve Their Full Economic Potential.” Read his columns at Medium.com