Conservative Counter-action to the Left’s Commandeering America
A thought provoking article for Conservative strategy with legislative bodies in the culture wars at GaryNorth.com by Paul Weyrich ‘Political Resistance Tactics: When to Fight’
The article addresses why it is important to fight for what you believe in, win or lose: 1) you’ll let others know where you stand, 2) that you’ll stand for your convictions, 3) your opponents understand your passion and are likely to take it into account in their future actions.
With the 2010 American elections a significant number of Conservative legislators were elected to national office. They will generally vote for Conservative ideas: “limited government, free enterprise, strong defense, and traditional values”. They are at battle with those who are “committed to bigger government, unilateral disarmament, more government regulations, and are opposed to traditional values”.
A large number of legislators do not have a strong world view Left or Right and act more often from pressure, preference and interest in reelection than principles and deep personal philosophy. These are the legislators Conservatives must focus attention on in legislative battles.
“…. because these are the people who exemplify the point made by the late Everett Dirksen: “When I feel the heat, I see the light.”
These legislators have often operated from a pain-pleasure principle, avoiding by supporting the most active and vociferous activists.
“In the past, they would just go toward the liberal side and would get praise from the media, and all the liberal grassroots groups would praise them, and while the conservatives would grumble, they were never well organized to do anything about it. A Southern Democrat from South Carolina was once very candid with me when I talked to him about a particular bill and he said, “You know, I recognize the majority of people of my district are opposed to this legislation, but, the ones who get out and work, the liberal activists who opposed me in my election, they’re for it. I’m going to be in favor of it because the other people don’t count, they don’t organize, they don’t vote, they don’t work.” Of course, he was absolutely right, until more recent times.”
Published in Tactics of Christian Resistance (Tyler, Texas: Geneva Divinity School, 1983), edited by Gary North.
On Paul Weyrich: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_Weyrich
Footnote On Conservative Activism
The ancient institution of slavery practiced throughout the British Empire was brought to its knees and legislated out of existence by a movement led by a Conservative evangelical Christian, William Wilberforce, but not without decades of unflagging effort. After his conversion to Christianity Wilberforce and a group of anti-slave-trade activists worked tirelessly for twenty-six years until the passage of the Slave Trade Act of 1807, which in turn led to the Slavery Abolition Act of 1833. They had their counterparts in the United States in the first half of the 1800’s leading up to the War Between The States.
So enormous, so dreadful, so irremediable did the [slave] trade’s wickedness appear that my own mind was completely made up for abolition. Let the consequences be what they would: I from this time determined that I would never rest until I had effected its abolition. –William Wilberforce – Antislavery politician – Christian History
Wilberforce and his compatriots’ efforts were blocked by “vested interests, parliamentary filibustering, entrenched bigotry, international politics, slave unrest, personal sickness, and political fear. Other bills introduced by Wilberforce were defeated in 1791, 1792, 1793, 1797, 1798, 1799, 1804, and 1805.” –William Wilberforce (1759-1833)
The champion for abolition of slavery was vilified, lampooned and threatened – he never gave up. At the beginning of the nineteenth century an alignment of terrestrial events led to the opportunity that pealed the death knell to slavery: Britain’s war with France, widespread knowledge of Napoleon’s hostility to emancipation, new Irish members in Parliament supporting abolition, new members in the Abolition Society, Wilberforce’s renewed advocacy as a parliamentary leader, increasing public and parliamentary support for abolition. Wilberforce committed, planned, organized, out-smarted, out-maneuvered and endured to close a dark and sorry chapter of human history.
Besides the obvious worldwide, modern-day forms (human trafficking, sex trade), what manifestations of slavery still exist today – culturally crippling enthrallment to lust, gratification, licentiousness, inaction, dependency, materialism, debt, the state…? The long struggle, the great controversy continues.