[The following is a guest blog, written by my daughter, Sandra Bradford. You can follow her on Twitter at @SandraLenay.]
America has changed. We cannot put the total blame on Obama or the Democrats or even the media without taking some of the blame for ourselves. We do not live in the same America as my grandparents and we do not face the same issues they did. The America we live in, its citizens who voted for an Obama second term, are for the most part largely uneducated about the Republican and Democratic parties. Twitter users were calling us racists, white supremacists, evil rich people, oppressors, and the language gets a lot more colorful from there. These are the terms liberals have put upon us, and instead of proving them wrong, we turned the other cheek in hopes that the public will find the truth. As times have grown harder in our country, the public has grown more outraged and hate has seeded its way into our political parties and in this 2012 election that seed sprouted into a flourishing ugly reality and we failed to inform the public of who we are.
In some ways, the Democrats have out-smarted us. When the country began federal funding, spending, subsidizing and adding department after department, it began to transform this country. Policies that we know have ruined our country, in some cases, were put there not because the law makers thought they would help us prosper but because they would help us fail and the government would be there to pick up the victims. When the public depends on the government for their livelihood, the poster boy of that government (Obama) becomes the public’s favorite celebrity.
The original issues of Republican vs. Democrat have been lost in the debates and in the media; instead they have been replaced, strategically, by the Democrats to issues that the government has no business making federal arguments in the first place. Issues like abortion, birth control, healthcare, and gay marriage have highlighted the race. We have lost sight of the fundamental issues of big government vs. limited government and the left loves this. Democrats don’t make arguments about the fundamental beliefs of the Republican party because they know the typical American citizen is ignorant of the true differences between the two parties, and we have allowed them to shy away from this by entertaining the new issues that they have indoctrinated in the American public. Democrats know, simply, that public ignorance is their bliss. If every citizen were informed about the real issues and beliefs of liberal vs. conservative, they would be free to choose what they perceive to be the best choice for America, but we have failed to educate them and the Democrats just sit back and take it in. These fundamental doctrines are no longer taught in school and they certainly are no longer discussed in the media, so what is left? Social arguments.
Our founding fathers would have never wanted the issues of abortion, birth control, etc. in a federal government debate because these type of issues were meant to be debated on a state level. Democrats have taken advantage of the uninformed majority and we have done nothing to stop them. We have not educated the public. They say we want to take away a woman’s right to choose and we defend our stance. Are these things that need to be talked about? Yes. Are they serious issues facing our country? Yes. But why are we talking about them on such a large scale? Romney meant to fire up his base by stating he will defund Planned Parenthood when he forgot about the most important thing. His base is on his side, it is the uninformed that were more fired up about this because we did not explain. It should not be federally funded because government should not use the money it has to either take from our taxes or borrow from other countries to grow more government. We must use that money for what the federal government was meant to do when it was founded by our fathers. We didn’t talk about this; instead we threw our religious values in their face in an America that has become so secular. Forgetting the uninformed was like a Christmas gift to the democrats because they were then free to tell them that Republicans want to take away their rights to their own body, which created an uproar. In a country where fundamental political differences are no longer taught in school or talked about by either party, how can we be surprised when the uninformed youth pick a side based on issues that federal government should have no say in anyway?
You who are so surprised that a 7.9% unemployed public would pick the president for a second term, you are forgetting that the new America does not know the policies that have brought us to this state or how to interpret them. We put so much blame on Obama and damn him for blaming it all on Bush, but in only doing this, we helped him to be re-elected. The average uninformed American citizen does not know why unemployment is so high, they simply know that we are struggling. Instead of informing them on how America has lost so many jobs, Republicans threw statistics and percentages at them and told them Obama is a failure, and that Romney has a plan.
We in many ways insulted them by saying how horrible it is that they are on food stamps and forgot to tell them why food stamps should be a last resort. We preached against government dependency while those who have known nothing else don’t understand that America was not built to support them but to create the culture and environment for them to succeed and prosper on their own. We didn’t explain that to them, so when we damn entitlements with no history lesson for the uninformed, we make it so easy for the left to tell them that we don’t want to help them, we want to leave them on the street to suffer, and we want to take food out of their mouths. When Romney spoke of the 47%, he was both right and wrong. He was right in the sense that there is a vast majority of citizens who use entitlements, and they think they should. He was wrong in the sense that most of these people are not vicious moochers who want to lie on the couch all day and watch soap operas, while the tax payer pays for their survival. Yes, some do take advantage in this way, but not most. Most of that 47% simply do not know the true purpose of the federal government. They do not know that those entitlements are there for the truly needy and that it is meant to be in most cases, temporary. Our government has grown so big over the years, that these entitlements are seen by most of the public as “the new normal” and most of this 47% view it as a benefit to being an American citizen. They think this way because nobody has informed them of the truth. Our failure to articulate this 47% statement to the public made it so easy for the left to use it against us and make Republicans look like haters of the poor and that we cannot relate to their struggle.
America is not the same, my friends. The people, like me, who did not live in the Reagan era, do not understand the fundamental responsibility of federal government. I spent the last two years educating myself because I wanted to understand the right path for our country but I am in a small group of exceptions. My generation and the one before me are generally uninformed of the fundamental differences of our political parties and we conservatives have taken that for granted while the liberals have thrived upon it. Go back and listen to the great speeches of Ronald Reagan. Not only does he inspire, he informs.
“Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children’s children what it was once like in the United States where men were free.”
“Government exists to protect us from each other. Where government has gone beyond its limits is in deciding to protect us from ourselves.”
“No government ever voluntarily reduces itself in size. Government programs, once launched, never disappear. Actually, a government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we’ll ever see on this earth!”
“Republicans believe every day is the Fourth of July, but the Democrats believe every day is April 15.”
“The problem is not that people are taxed too little, the problem is that government spends too much. To sit back hoping that someday, some way, someone will make things right is to go on feeding the crocodile, hoping he will eat you last – but eat you he will.”
“We must reject the idea that every time a law’s broken, society is guilty rather than the lawbreaker. It is time to restore the American precept that each individual is accountable for his actions.”
” Welfare’s purpose should be to eliminate, as far as possible, the need for its own existence.”
“All of us should remember that the Federal Government is not some mysterious institution comprised of buildings, files, and paper. The people are the government. What we create we ought to be able to control.”
“We are learning that the way to prosperity is not more bureaucracy and redistribution of wealth but less government and more freedom for the entrepreneur and for the creativity of the individual.”
“The historian Edward Gibbon wrote about ancient Athens, the first democracy and the fountainhead of Western culture. He wrote that when the Athenians finally wanted not to give to society but for society to give to them, when the freedom they wished for was freedom from responsibility, then Athens ceased to be free.”
These are just a few examples. When was the last time you heard something like this from a Republican speaking on national TV to the public? When we stopped informing, educating, and inspiring, and instead assumed that the public was educated in conservatism vs. liberalism, republic vs. socialism, Republican values vs. Democratic values, we lost the people, and thus lost the election. And today as we are all pleading, scratching our heads and wondering how America voted for socialism, I tell you that they do not know what that is or how to thrive by restoring America.
Sandra Bradford, via Chad Owen Brand