With Iranians taking to the streets in protest of their government this weekend, Americans of all stripes have been tweeting their support to those taking the risk of joining the crowds.
The clear divide of how the right and left view the role of government was on clear display on Twitter Sunday, as leaders from the Republican and Democratic Parties expressed their support…albeit from two vastly different theories on government.
As was pointed out by Jay Caruso on Twitter, the response from those like Mitt Romney reflected the “Don’t tread on me” sentiment constitutional conservatives often cite as shorthand for the traditional “try and stop me” American relationship with government.
Profoundly moving to watch those seeking freedom in Iran. Patriots afar remind us of the patriots who won our own freedom and also those who preserve it. Heroes all.
— Mitt Romney (@MittRomney) December 31, 2017
In comparison, progressives took a markedly different approach of support. Hoping the Iranian government will support the anti-Iranian government protests…Um, what?
The Iranian people, especially the young, are protesting for the freedom and future they deserve. I hope their government responds peacefully and supports their hopes.
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) December 31, 2017
As one Twitter user pointed out, this is the progressive “please let me” approach to civil disobedience.
@ReaganBattalion Try and stop me vs. Please let me
— 🇮🇪🇺🇸🇲🇽 (@AdsByFlaherty) December 31, 2017
One of former President Barack Obama’s most played clips by conservatives prior to Trump, was an interview in which he posited the United States Constitution is a charter of negative liberties — meaning it details what the government cannot do to its citizens– but contains few positive liberties — meaning what the government must do for its citizens.
These two tweets offer a stark delineation of the right and left in America today. The Left believes the government bestows rights upon its citizens and can, therefore, condone or curb any behavior.
We, as conservatives, understand that government exists as a social contract and our rights are inherent, bestowed upon us by a divine creator, and cannot be taken away by any man-made government.
That, in a nutshell, is the basis of American Exceptionalism. We can only hope the tens of thousands (so far) of brave Iranians standing up to their oppressive government will articulate the Romney sentiment. That way lies true, inalienable rights and freedoms.