The Courage To Resist
Recently, Charles M. Blow wrote an article in the New York Times stating rather arrogantly that we can’t have our country back. Read the entire post from Right Wing News and note Mr. Blow’s sheer contempt for us. It is breathtaking and maddening at the same time. If you take high blood pressure medication, it may be a good idea to pop a pill before reading the post.
Mr. Blow throws down the gauntlet. Do we pick it up or walk away? Will it be the slow death of relying on others, or the assured victory of self-power multiplied ten, twenty, thirty-million times or more?
Relying on politicians will not solve our problems; neither will relying on the courts. These band-aids may work for a single issue, but the broader abuse of power and its corruptive influence continues to exist, laying the groundwork for additional egregious violations that will, once again, require us to rely on the power of others to solve a problem only we as a people can and should address. Once again we will be exposed to months and months of obfuscations, misdirection, propaganda, and outright lies.
Our goal is nothing short of wresting our rights back from the statists in DC – it is not just to repeal ObamaCare. ObamaCare is a symptom of a much larger disease – that of too much power in the national government. A singular focus on one issue at the expense of the true threat to our liberty is frankly dangerous; it is a gamble when the stakes are high. However, until the cancer is removed, any remedy resting on the backdrop of the current statist tyranny in Washington is the equivalent of using chemotherapy to extend a patient’s life a few months, knowing full well that death is the ultimate victor.
Political solutions only make sense in an ecosystem where the rights of the people trump the rights of those in DC. I don’t disagree with recommended solutions to take back the party at the local level and project such efforts to higher political spheres at both the state and national levels, but I completely reject any notion this will do any good as long as the real issue which faces us is left to fester unchallenged – that of statism and the contempt and tyranny it carries with it at the highest levels of government and the fear and untruths that propagate to all other levels of society living under the illusion that national power is the ultimate arbiter of your life. The very notion is anathema to the meaning of the word independence.
The disease of tyranny spreads quite easily, and we could send an army of politicians to DC that meet our criterion only to be disappointed at the results. However, if the power rests once more in the hands of the people, the problem mitigates itself. Without near absolute power, there is no large-scale corruption. We must recognize this truth if we are to have any hope of succeeding.
Self-reliance in the style and form our forefathers demonstrated is desperately needed. As progressives over the years have run about the country stirring up apathy, it is our duty to wipe the sleep from our eyes. Our energy is high, but misdirected. Rallies, faxes, emails, phone calls – this list goes on and on – had no impact on the final result. In the end, against the wishes of a majority, ObamaCare passed. It is time to pivot the focus of that energy. The Tea Parties have a new tool at their disposal, yet untapped, that fit not only the spirit of resistance but the goals as well. While last minute dashes to pressure members of Congress may have some effect, it is obviously not enough. This unused tactic is tailor made for Tea Party activists and its time we all learned to use them to maximum effect.
The tools of passive-aggressive resistance will pull the rug out from under the tyrants in DC. It will take a level of sacrifice that we may no longer possess the sheer guts to face. We carry signs, we talk of taking back the party, but the reality is we are going to have to get a little muddy and, in the process, possibly experience a bit of discomfort ourselves.
Recently, I was forwarded an email from a Google group that discusses such issues. The particular communication focused like a laser on the real flaws in current tactics designed to deal with the sources that threaten our way of life. Nothing worth saving is going to be easy and any solution that solely relies on the power of others (politicians and federal courts) instead of self-power should be soundly rejected if they stand apart from the larger cause of the current ailment. The efficacy of such approaches exists only in the context of a larger strategy targeted at the primary cause that acts as the foundation upon which all other issues rest upon. Strategies the rely of the power of others must be subsumed by a strategy that deals with this principal problem – this foundation:
Glenn Beck urges us to emulate Gandhi and Martin Luther King. Well, we sure aren’t. Yes, we have had our protests but they were unobtrusive (on weekends and out of the way) and they were blatantly ignored. Gandhi and King, on the other hand, held their protests in the thick of things. The protested right down on Main Street, at noon, during the week – and at lunch counters, right in front of the other customers, and the world. They were arrested when they refused to move, dragged away by police and jailed, often beaten with clubs and pummeled by fire houses and bitten by police dogs. What they did, couldn’t be ignored. Their peaceful presence under the violent hand of the government exposed the government for the thugs they were.
Gandhi and King continued to show peaceful courage in the face of government violence until the world – then the government – finally listened to them and changed their oppressive ways.
Until we move past our polite “Sunday School” gatherings we will continue to be ignored. Until we find the courage to truly emulate these past leaders, we will continue to be ignored. The question is: Are you willing to sit down on the streets and sidewalks around the capitol and in the hallways of Congress and refuse to move until the government listens to you? Are you willing to be arrested and possibly beaten, and put in jail, without resistance? If you are, then you have the courage of these past historic movements. Until there are enough of us who possess this kind of courage, our protests will continue to be ignored.
If there is a sufficient number of brave men and women among us who have the courage to do more than just chant and carry signs and politely listen to speakers, then let us stout-hearted men and women converge on Washington and sit on the streets and sidewalks and in the hallways of Congress and peacefully refuse to move, and continue to do this until we are heard. We pay for these streets and sidewalks and hallways, so let us sit down on what we own and stay there until the world, then the government, notices us and ends its oppression of its people.
How many among us have this kind of courage?
I am often amazed at the story of David and Goliath. Where others measured themselves against the size of the giant and concluded victory was impossible, David measured not himself against the size of Goliath, but measured Goliath against the God that accompanied David. From this perspective, David saw Goliath as nothing but a tiny nuisance. Right is on our side, and we stand on the higher moral ground. Just as Martin Luther King, Jr. and Gandhi occupied the higher ground and won against all odds, the same stands true for us. We should not be looking at this problem and see a Goliath. We should look at this problem and see a tiny nuisance and face it without fear, secure in the knowledge that our victory is assured.
Pick up that gauntlet.