I've had a lot of requests to post my speech from the Americans for Prosperity conference in Austin, TX. The speech ran as my RedState Under The Radar column at Human Events yesterday. You can view it here. The text is also below.
There are people in this world who are morally and ideologically opposed to us. We call them the left. They are a group of people who want you to surrender your hard earned money so they can give it to someone else who did not earn it and probably would not need it, but for the left’s insistence on government dependence.
Their rhetoric is “hope and change.” Hope and change are always buzzwords in the revolution against freedom. The only change they’ll offer is more government. The only choice they’ll offer you is whether or not to abort your kids. The policies of the last eight years will be replaced by the failed policies of the last 100 years.
So what do we do?
We fight and win. It’s not easy, but it is simple. We stop minding our own business and we engage. We stop being pundits yelling into the wind and start being activists yelling into the telephone.
The internet is a valuable tool for collaboration, communication, and activism. Use RedState as an example. We have a community of thousands from every single state in the union. With our relaunch this week, we have the ability for each person to contribute news about their own state -- to tell everyone else what’s going on and to build the story about what’s going on.
And we have the ability to collect everyone’s email address and when action must be taken, send an email asking people to take action. You can easily be a part of that email list. Or you can choose another list. You can choose to be a part of the RedState Community. Or you can choose to be a part of another online community. Or you can choose to do nothing at all.
But let me tell you, while you decide to do nothing, the other side is marching from Mordor to change your way of life. They have chosen to do something and the change they want to bring is not change any free person should want.
In two years, the 50 legislatures of the several states will redraw the lines for the U.S. House for the next decade. If you sit on the sidelines, the odds go up that those lines are going to be drawn in someone else’s favor. With the Supreme Court in the balance, this year is an important election at the national level. But your local races this year can potential decide state legislative races in two years. And those state legislative races in two years will decide Congress for ten years.
So you have a choice: get involved or not.
Go to RedState or one of the other sites out there. Start reading. Develop a feel for the community. Then start writing. Give us your thoughts on your local sheriff. What’s he doing. Give us your thoughts on your state representative. Become the person others rely on for information.
Find what interests you. Start blogging about it. Cover the issue. Learn to do an open records act request or learn to read campaign disclosures or learn to do both. Know who you are up against. Be the person who raises the red flags. At least join the conversation. You cannot sit on the sidelines and expect victory.
You don’t have to be the commander. You don’t have to do it full time. Just be willing to lend a hand. Just be willing to stay informed. Just be willing to help others stay informed.
People remember Paul Revere. Few people remember Dr. Samuel Prescott. At 1 a.m. on April 19, 1775, Revere ran into Prescott, who was on his way home from a party. Prescott was willing to help. Without Prescott’s knowledge of the farms surrounding them, Revere’s task would have been all the more difficult that night. And when Revere rode out into the countryside, Prescott stayed behind on the farms and in his town rallying people, getting his brother to go to the next town to rally people. They were not Paul Revere, but they joined him and added to his voice.
You do not have to be Paul Revere starting your own ride out into the night. You can be Samuel Prescott. Just join us at RedState or elsewhere with knowledge of your community and your issues and spread the word. Recruit your family and friends. Sign up for our email alerts. Be willing to take action when the email comes. But more importantly, start sharing, start collaborating, start communicating. It’s too important for us to do nothing and too necessary to doubt and retreat.
We’ve beaten them before. We can do it again. And this time, we can do it online, where they think they are strongest.