I’m not even sure that James Pindell, Chuck Douglas, and Drew Cline were even at the same rally I was from reading their criticism (one at the WMUR site, two Union Leader Op-Eds) – or even bothered to watched the videos that were up at several sites. Each of them decided to tear the folks apart that stood up for their beliefs without seeing what was, to me, the obvious. In fact, I’m not even sure they even saw the obvious reason why 600 folks turned out to participate, volunteers doing the grunt work necessary to put on such an event, and the dozen or so speakers up at the podium. Yes, when you put yourself out in public, this is what happens – others will take pot shots at you, at the rally, or the issue for a variety of reasons: their sense of “professionalism”, their overarching specialized knowledge has been “violated”, their standing within their own specialized communities “demands” they take a stand, or they decided to reject the perceived issue out of hand as “being without merit”. None of them seem to have caught the intense sense of importance of the actual subject to the speakers and the attendees.
Or, to put it simply, wielding a hatchet just because they have an audience to impress or a thinly veiled purpose that may be getting set for the future. Or both.
Honor Your Oath. It wasn’t about journalists worried about column inches, punctuation, and delicately chosen words and sentence structure; it is about keeping a promise. It wasn’t about case law, or legal briefs, or court battles (even if from a former Supreme Court Justice); it is about a man and the importance of his word. It was not about bright lights, teleprompters, self-absorption, politics, or even the crowd; it is about judging a man and his bond. It wasn’t about guns or self-defense or “Stand Your Ground” (although that’s all these three seemingly heard), it wasn’t about Right or Left; it is about answering the question “Do we trust this person when their actions do not match that Oath”?
And then, it is about Accountability – a word that the Political Class (and Media) hates having applied to them. After all, who are WE to judge them? Easy – they work for us and not the other way around. They represent us – but should be doing so under the “rules of the game” – the Constitution. You know, that old dusty paper that a whole lot more people are reading, are studying, and talking about. And then, expecting those same elected representatives to at least uphold its values. Each of the Constitutions were supposed to strictly constrain the actions and the boundaries of Government – not Civil Society or citizens. We should expect our politicians to keep Government to stay within that fenced in area but they have not. Instead, like a person who cannot restrain themselves at an all you can eat buffet and refuses to detect the difference between satiation and gluttony (with the attendant muffin top, overhang to the knees, and seam bursting), politicians have ignored their Oaths and let Government feast at any table it wants – even those beyond the fence of the Constitutions. Fence? What fence, or so it seems nowadays.
Good manners used to assume that one knew when NOT to intrude – our politicians should relearn that lesson by re-examining their Oaths and to what they really swore fealty (and not just mere words).
These three gentlemen, and many like them, decided it was all about other things – but not why the folks were there. But that is what they do, it seems. In doing so, however, it shows that when “the smart ones walk amongst us”, all wrapped up in knowledge veiled in nuance and boxed in with personality, that they forget that at times it isn’t about what is perceived (or pre-determined) at the 50,000 foot level by those well above “the blue collar guy”. Instead, it is about the basics at ground zero – in the ordinary (unnuanced) man’s heart and soul.
An Oath – is it just a series of words to be forgotten when the hand is lowered or something that is turned over and examined carefully and then ingrained into the heart? And that’s why I feel all three missed what the Honor You Oath rally was all about. They immediately over thought and over dissed its purpose – it was not about their “higher concepts”; but it was about simple things:
- did you make a promise to us?
- did you make a promise to a set of ideals that are well understood?
- are you showing, with your actions, that you are keeping your promise – or not?
These are not rocket scientist concepts! Every common man understands what a promise is – and when it has been broken. The Framers crafting the NH and US Constitutions intentionally used simple and common words (at the time, that is – perhaps beyond the ken of current graduates of government schools, I’ll grant) – that the common man would understand and know their significance. These were written in such a way to be easily understood by that same common man.
After 225 odd years, the plainness of the words still do exist – but have they been obscured by centuries of case law, of lawyers over impressed with themselves such that they are now emulating theologians and their Head of a Pin conundrum?
Are they at the logical equivalence point of formerly “elegant code” that has been completely lost in a clump of spaghetti code and bolt-on add-ins by those that care not for its original importance?? For them, is code is merely a stepping stone to “bigger” things without understanding its importance?
Has decades of the pull of Progressive politics, insinuated into all aspects of life, made politicians Democrat AND Republican, lose sight of the real and absolute truths embedded in those documents? That perhaps one of the biggest reasons why this country is running off the rails is the false of equivalence of “doing something” as important as to what the Constitutions were supported to guard? Do they not believe that the incremental “soft tyranny” warned about by De Tocqueville is even more insidious than an outright invader – often done under the rubric of “we [politicians] have to do something”? And so, no longer remember that the highest ideal was not to enhance”safety and security” and “do stuff” but to secure Liberty? Yet, we who do, are seen as the crazies?
Are ‘informed journalists” so jaded that the banal and rudderless has become the important? To them, has the “manufactured controversy” (or helping to create such) and “the inside political game” become more important than results?
Has our Foundational Law been lost in the noise? And has the traditional value, that a man is known by his word, no longer important? The impression, of these three, it no longer is. Or worse, can be obscured or delegitimized.
Note: this has gone long, so I will fisk their respective criticisms later.