I used to work for a guy that once stated “ Republicans believe that every day is the 4th of July, Democrats believe that every day is April 15th.” I was an impressionable young lad at the time and I came from a long line of Kennedy worshiping liberals and I liked what I heard from this new boss of mine. Ronald Reagan was his name and I was serving my country as a in the military at the time. The more I learned and listened to him, the more I believed in his message. Ronald Reagan made a lot of very difficult decisions during his tenure as President of these United States, and many of those decisions vilified him as a tyrant and aggressive war monger with all the military spending and weapons build up from the cold war era. Our young country, and in fact the world was fortunate to have had a leader like him at that particular time in history. Communism was defeated and the bell of freedom began to ring in places long thought to have been swallowed by the darkness of a communist way of life forever.
I was drawn to this message of ‘pride in my country’ and became a lifelong Republican, a Reagan Republican I guess you could say. There is a generation of us out here, we were relatively young during the beginning of the Reagan years but we grew up during the Reagan presidency and we flew flags on our porches, put bumper stickers on our cars and were openly proud to be American’s first, and Republican’s next.
We (my Reagan Generation) are now in the midst of our chosen careers and the majority of us are paying our taxes, providing for our families and nesting away some for that rainy day. We are putting our children through school, teaching them right from wrong, and providing a religious base for their lives. Yes, that’s right, I said it out loud, ‘religious base!’ Religion has become the ‘R’ word that so many have come to speak about in a hushed voice in only the closest of circles these days. This same ‘Boss’ from those younger days of mine also said, “If we ever forget that we are One Nation Under God, then we are one nation gone under”. I am not a religious zealot and do not consider myself to be a ‘far right wing conservative’ but I am proud to be a republican who cut his teeth during the Reagan years. I am proud of the fact that we rear our children to be patriots, to be God fearing, and of a very high moral character.
There are many of us out here and it is time we wake up and take back that which we hold very dear to our hearts. It is time to put back up those flags, find a candidate that we believe in and put that bumper sticker on our cars, maybe even plant a lawn sign or two and stand up for what we believe in. I can assure you that no one more than this writer recognizes the fact that the candidate pool is pretty thin right now but we have to start now. Before it gets any worse, here at the hometown level we must seed the growth of our party and our country. From the school boards to local city councils and township boards, county government to state government, we have to seed these governmental seats with fresh ideas and fresh faces. We must provide strong leadership that is not afraid to make some difficult decisions as that is what is needed at this time in history.
This writer is as guilty as many from my generation of failing to ‘keep my eye on the ball’ over the past 20 years or so and I could give you a hundred reasons as to why I have been too busy to ‘get involved’. That being said, enough is enough, it has become the right time again in history when our country needs to call upon my generation of Reagan Republicans to stand up and be counted. We are proud to be Americans, be proud to be Republicans and we need to get this country back on track. The pendulum is getting ready to swing way far in the ‘other’ direction and there is likely little we can do about that in the immediate future. But change takes time, Reagan knew that, he began in the early 1960’s and our country only realized the benefits of his vision after his presidency had concluded in the late 1980’s. Now is the time to get our feet wet and give back to this great country that has provided us with the opportunities available no where else in the world. We have benefited greatly from all this country has to offer and we now need to offer some pay back by means of service. It will be tough, it will mean sacrifice, it will mean meetings on nights we would rather go fishing of play golf, but our country needs us now and it is time to serve. Get a bumper sticker, put up a yard sign, get involved, don’t be afraid to let your neighbors know that you are a Republican. It is time be ‘Proud to be a Republican’ again instead of just being ‘ Proud to not be a Democrat’.