It is NOT the end of the world as we know it. -Amanda Green
Over the last few days, something strange has been happening here at According to Hoyt. Instead of the usual collection of folks who take umbrage at anything Sarah says because she is too conservative or too white or too much of a traitor to her sex (or whatever the current attack of the day might be), there has been a spate of folks coming here and telling her she doesn’t understand. She doesn’t understand US institutions. She doesn’t understand history. She doesn’t understand tyranny. Well, you get my drift.
If got so bad at one point yesterday that I checked to make sure I hadn’t fallen down the rabbit hole. Nope, I was still where I belonged and not a rabbit or a Mad Hatter was to be seen. So, I checked usernames and even asked her for a couple of IPs to see if some of those commenting weren’t actually some of our favorite trolls just trying a new tact in an attempt to trip us up.
As far as I could tell, that didn’t appear to be the case, at least not for the most part. So did someone put something in the water or are we just in a very long full moon? I’m not sure but here’s what I think about their objections – thhhppp!
Okay, my mama taught me better manners than that. So let’s see if I can be a bit more verbal in my response. Sarah knows better than most anyone who comes to this blog what tyranny is. She understands, because she has lived through such things, the impact a revolution can have on a country. She knows what it is like to have friends and family simply disappear because they didn’t say or do the approved thing. To accuse her of not understanding tyranny is to show your own ignorance, or maybe your self-appointed superiority.
But I’m not here to defend Sarah. She can do so much more eloquently than can I.
What I do want to address is the idea that the creation of a viable third party would solve all our ills as well as the belief that collapse and revolution are the only options left for us. Third parties and independent candidates have come and gone since the founding of our nation. In recent memory, we have the presidential campaign of Ross Perot in 1992. That year, George Bush was squaring off against Bill Clinton. For a time, he pulled better polling numbers than either of his opponents. I remember how everyone was looking at him and declaring him the first viable third party candidate for president since Teddy Roosevelt.
But polls don’t always translate into votes and votes don’t always translate into Electoral College votes. Despite the fact Perot received more votes than any third party or independent candidate since TR, he received no – I repeat NO – electoral votes. And, folks, without electoral votes, no one, no matter how many popular votes they can, get be elected president. That is the strength and the weakness of our system. It is also why we won’t have a third party president for a very long time. For that to happen, we have to start at the grassroots level by focusing at our local then our state and then our federal elected offices.
It isn’t something that will happen overnight. In fact, we have a better chance of changing the Republican Party from the inside before that happens. Oh, wait, there is a movement already in place that is trying to do just that. It’s called the Tea Party and it has been making strides on the local and state level. This past election showed that it is starting to get a foothold on the national level as well. But until it has enough members on the Hill to get key committee appointments, legislation penned by its members can and will be hung up in committee.
Unless, of course, we make enough noise at home and the incumbents start realizing that we are no longer satisfied with the status quo.
Of course, there is another side to this. Those members of the Tea Party – or any other non-traditional win of either party – have to stop coming across like screaming lunatics. That will scare folks off even more quickly than the hatred of the status quo.
As for the stance that America is about to fall into collapse and the only way to avoid it is to revolt now, well, get real. Yes, times will get tough if things continue as they are right now. But this won’t be the first time this country has faced hard times, nor will it be the last. However, if you really think we can go into armed conflict here and not have outside forces taking advantage of it, you are more than naïve. The moment we turn on one another, our allies will step back and wait for the dust to clear. They will no more want to get involved until they see where the cards are falling than they want such rebellion in their own lands.
But our enemies – and gawd do we have enemies – will leap into the fray with one intent. They will use the desire to tear down the government to destroy our country. It won’t be like the movies either. They won’t invade Denver and leave the rest of the country alone. No, our bases overseas will be attacked. Our trade with other countries will be disrupted. Debt will be called in.
Do you really think ISIS and its ilk will sit still in their neck of the world and wait for the dust to settle here? Oh hell no. They will use the cover of our own fighting to move in and destroy what makes this country great. Lives will be lost, many more than most of you think. I don’t know about you, but I’ll do just about anything to keep that from happening.
So instead of sitting there, whining about how bad things are and how there is nothing we can do, I challenge you to quit sitting on your hands and start trying to change things. How many of those who attacked Sarah for not understanding the current situation have actually tried to run for office or have served on local or state committees where change can be implemented? How many have actually been to countries where tyranny is an everyday reality?
Am I saying there is nothing to be worried about? Far from it. I am not liking one little bit a lot of things that have happened the last twenty plus years in this country. But I am seeing steps being attempted to change things. Unless and until I see the president, whoever he or she might be, announcing that martial law has been declared and elections have been cancelled, I will continue to believe that we can implement change without actually taking to the streets in open rebellion.
Color me naïve is you will, but I have seen what real oppression looks like and we are far from it in this country. Can we get there? Yes, given time and an electorate that decides there is no reason to stand up and make those running for office take note that we are tired of things going as they are.
Otto von Bismark said, “People never lie so much as after a hunt, during a war or before an election.” So study the voting records of your elected officials. Let them know that you are keeping track of what they do and will not hesitate to vote them out if they fail to vote in the way that best represents their constituents. Learn all you can about the candidates – from all sides of the spectrum. Has that candidate for city council lived in your town for long? Has he or she attended council meetings, taken part in city planning sessions, have they even voted in the last umpteenth elections? If not, ask yourself why they want to run for office and what their qualifications are? Listen to what their platform is and question them. Go to the meet the candidate functions and see if they actually show up to those or if they are ghost candidates. In other words, do your homework.
Then go out and spend time trying to get the candidate on whom you can place your confidence in elected. Vote. Volunteer to be a poll watcher. You don’t have to be the “official” watcher. It is those who watch the watchers who actually help keep the system from breaking down too much. Most of all, if you see something going on, whether it is in violation of the election laws or is your elected official not doing his job, don’t be afraid to speak up. Shout it from the rooftops, but do it only when it is a valid complaint and it is best if you do so when you have something to back you up.
In other words, quit bellyaching and then not doing anything else. That simply makes you part of the problem, a very annoying part.