Wednesday, 15 April 2009.
As Americans, it is our birthright to offer dissent. Our freedom to stand firm and question our government is what continues to make our nation exceptional. The fact I stand – without fear of reprisal - just outside the White House gates to participate in today’s protest is a testament to the power and blessings that we enjoy as Americans.
Our power is guaranteed in our Constitution, which announced to the world that this nation, and its people, which are exceptional – for it is “we the people” who possessed the power to form this “more perfect union.” It was our Founders who first brought about change. This change has been renewed by every American who exercises their power at the ballot box.
In November, our nation chose a new president from two major candidates who promised their own visions of change during these times of economic crisis. Like many Americans, and a majority of my home state, I made my choice for the Republican candidate. A majority of other Americans, including some people attending today’s tea parties, made a different choice.
I mention this because today’s action is not Republican or Democratic. It is not Red or Blue. It is not Conservative, Libertarian or Liberal. It is American. In fact, it is the most American thing any of us can do.
We must challenge our representatives to act on our behalf instead of acting on the behalf of special interests, lobbyists or labor bosses.
We must challenge them to articulate their ideas for fixing our economy and creating jobs.
We must challenge them by demanding details instead of rhetoric and rallies which belong on the campaign trail and not in the halls of government.
Regardless of your politics; regardless of whether you were opposed or supportive of the policies of the last administration; regardless of your opposition or support of the current administration, today is the day that we use our power, stand firm and say to this government: “Enough!”
We say “enough” to runaway spending, “enough” to increasing the deficit.
We say “enough” to increasing taxes, “enough” to policies which steal the future from our children and grandchildren in order to pay back your political allies.
We say “enough” to elected leaders from both parties who choose to be rubber stamps instead of advocates for their constituents.
We say “enough” to those who do not show leadership but instead blame their predecessors for their problems.
We say “enough” to shirking your duties as our elected representatives and ramming through legislation that no one has read.
In the media and on the Internet, there are many who have asked what the point of today’s action is; do we really think we can make a difference?
We can only look to the future for the answer to the latter question, for it is what we do in the days and months to follow – when we become active in our communities – which will determine the level of our success. To the former, we come together to in order engage our leaders and, with our combined power, enable them to once again claim, on our behalf, the mantle of leadership which they have vacated.
Today, we begin to hold this government accountable.
Today, we begin to cast off our common apathy and replace it with action.
Today, we begin to show our fellow Americans that it is acceptable to publicly voice their concerns and opposition to the policies of the current government without fear of the criticisms and accusations offered by the government and its supporters in the public and punditry.
In November, the nation chose “change.” Today, we say “enough.” And to those who choose not to listen to the words we speak today, I have this warning: when it comes time again to “change,” we will likely decide that we’ve had “enough” of you.
<strong>Crossposted at:</strong><strong><a href="http://ryanjames.us/?p=1198" target="_blank">K. Ryan James blog</a><a href="http://thenextright.com/kryanjames/on-tea-parties" target="_blank">The Next Right</a><a href="http://kryanjames.blogtownhall.com/2009/04/15/on_tea_parties.thtml" target="_blank">Townhall</a><a href="http://www.yrnetwork.com/blogs/1255/Kenneth-Ryan-James.aspx#article475" target="_blank">YR Network</a><a href="http://rebuildtheparty.ning.com/profiles/blogs/on-tea-parties" target="_blank">Rebuild the Party</a><a href="http://smartgirlpolitics.ning.com/profiles/blogs/on-tea-parties" target="_blank">Smart Girl Politics</a></strong>