LONSBERRY: On Being A Republican In Monroe County

It’s got to be tough up at the Monroe County Republican headquarters.

               One day we kick them in the slats for not having any candidates, and the next day we kick them in the slats for having such a weak slate of candidates.

               We complain because nobody will run, and then when people step forward, we criticize them for not being better.

               That’s how death throes are.

               It’s not pretty watching a power base contract, it’s not easy being the little guy in a world where the little guy usually loses.

               But it is what it is and it has to be recognized and even appreciated for what it is.

               And if you only run when you think you can win, you’re missing the point. You field candidates not because of what you think your electoral prospects will be, you field candidates because you believe in your principles and in the system. You believe that what you stand for ought to be represented in the campaign debate, and you believe that the voters ought to have a choice on Election Day.

               The Monroe County Republican committee has met that obligation.

               There is a congressional candidate, and a clerk candidate, a couple of judge candidates, and a couple of state Senate candidates. And it seems that a coup against the leadership has been forestalled.

               No, there’s not a groundswell of enthusiasm. No, the phoenix is not rising. No, it’s not likely more than one or two of these candidates will win. Yes, it’s likely the Democratic Party will continue its tightening grip on Monroe County power.

               That’s just the way it is.

               And that’s fine.

               Because supporting a political party is not like rooting for a football team. The question is not: Are we going to win? The question is: Are we right? Not in the spiteful competitive way where you want to be right in order to defeat your opponent, but in the earnest way that sees good for society in the adoption of policies that are sound and wise.

               When you are a missionary, you preach even if no one listens. And you keep at it, trying new ways to express yourself, hoping to touch someone’s heart and mind.

               Sometimes you have to be a voice in the wilderness.

               And when that is your lot, you don’t retreat and complain, you stand forth and proclaim. It is always right and noble to declare the truth.

               And the truth is that those constitutional principles of small government, safe streets, individual liberty and self-reliance which the Republican Party has traditionally stood for are exactly what Monroe County, New York and the country need.

               As the Democratic Party becomes ever more hostile to traditional American values – as it rejects both capitalism and criminal accountability – the counter argument must be made. As progressivism seeks to spread its socialist, totalitarian agenda, there must be a clear, constant voice reminding people what a free country truly is.

               If you believe in the principles of a political party, supporting that party is not partisanship, it is patriotism. And when there aren’t patronage jobs to be had, or contracts to be let, the opportunists tend to clear out and the patriots tend to stand up.

               That’s where the Monroe County Republican Party must go now. Less bossism and more boosterism. Less caring about what this big person or that big person wants or decrees, and more focus on being a loud, clear and consistent voice for patriotism, conservatism and the Constitution.

               Because while the Democrats are in power and on the rise, they are also wrong.

               The nonsense which has come from Albany and City Hall is not improved by its popularity. The policies of the Democratic Party, imposed from the national or state capital, will bring division, bankruptcy and ruin. They are almost without exception enemies of the liberties and balances of our Republic. They may buy votes, but they sell souls, and they sell our nation’s future down the river.

               The house is ablaze, and somebody’s got to shout, “Fire!”

               That’s the role of Monroe County Republicans, and their fellow believers across upstate. Even without power there can be a voice, and that voice must be raised.

               If you can’t legislate, than pontificate. Spread the truth as you understand it.

               And God bless those who put their name forward to stand for truth on the ballot. They perform a worthwhile function, even if they lose at the ballot box.

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