Welcome to the first issue of "Choose Freedom."
I’ve titled this blog "Choose Freedom," because I think that freedom is at the center of a great national debate currently embroiling our country.
Coincidentally, promoting freedom is the core mission of a Brecksville-based civic organization that is actively participating in this national debate. But more about that in a minute.
So why does this debate matter?
It matters, because freedom is what has enabled generations of Americans to be whatever they’ve wanted to be. Freedom has enabled millions of individual Americans to excel at everything from business & science to sports & entertainment. And in the process, freedom has given the American people the highest standard of living that the world has ever known.
But today, our freedom is very much at risk - probably more so than at any time since our country’s founders stuck their collective necks out and signed the Declaration of Independence 235 years ago. And ironically the threat to our freedom is coming from within.
If you don’t yet see this threat, please stop for a few moments and take a look around. We now live in a country where various levels of government dictate everything from whether you can put up a basketball hoop on your garage to how much water your toilet can flush. And it’s getting worse. Remember when you were free to decide for yourself whether you needed to wear a seatbelt or when you could only get a ticket for not wearing your seat belt if you were stopped for another violation? Remember when politicians didn’t think that it was the federal government’s job to tell us whether our kids should have french-fries and ice cream bars in their school lunches? Freedom is sometimes stolen bit by bit.
But why is this happening? Well in the US it’s because for at least the last twenty years elitist career politicians from both the Democratic and the Republican parties have disregarded their primary responsibility as guardians of freedom and instead done everything they could to grow government. Along the way, they’ve regulated everything they could think of, mandated thousands of government programs, squandered trillions of taxpayer dollars, destroyed millions of private sector jobs and decimated America’s middle class. Their most recent attempt at economic stimulus is a case in point. (Has it improved your family’s finances?)
What’s worse, they’ve created a culture of dependency on government that is meant primarily to ensure their own hold on power. It’s gotten to be so blatant that, at times, it’s looked like a race to see who can buy more votes by creating the most government handouts. Of course all of these taxpayer funded handouts and bailouts have actually done little more than promote government run crony capitalism. And they’ve come at such a high cost that they’re now threatening to not only bankrupt the country, but also to “transform” the average American into a charter member of a European style socialist underclass.
But fortunately, the Progressive program of “transforming America” has sparked a renewed and sometimes very loud public discussion about the role of government in the lives of US citizens. That’s because a lot of Americans are not buying into the idea of a nanny state. They’re not willing to trade their dignity and freedom for an entitlement program. They don’t want to be dependent on government for their mode of transportation, their homes, their college educations, their healthcare and their retirements. They’ve had it with inept, self-serving politicians, and they’re doing something about it. They’re speaking out and they’re forming Tea Parties, 912s, ward clubs and other grass roots organizations that empower average citizens to stand up for their rights and, when necessary, to “throw the bums out”.
One such organization, located here in Brecksville, is the Cuyahoga Valley Republicans (CVR). If you haven’t yet heard of it, the CVR is an independent grass roots organization with close to 600 members. It is dedicated to advancing the principles of individual liberty, justice, free enterprise and limited government as derived from the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution.
Technically the CVR is a non-profit corporation in the State of Ohio. As such, it does not take its marching orders from the Republican Party. Instead the CVR’s positions on candidates and issues are directed by its members. The CVR exists to provide voters with the means to directly influence the outcome of elections and the public policies made by elected officials once they’re in office. The CVR’s unofficial motto is “Make your voice heard!” If you’ve ever attended a CVR meeting, you know that this is more than hype.
The CVR is also proud to be part of an extensive N.E. Ohio network of grass roots organizations that include Tea Party, 912 groups and local Republican clubs. Together this network of 6,000 members played a defining role in the 2010 elections. In 2012 its impact should be even greater, starting with the primaries.
Regardless of how you’ve voted in the past, if you care about freedom and how it impacts your family, then the CVR is your kind of organization. There’s strength in numbers, and the CVR’s numbers empower voters.
People like Senator Rob Portman and Governor John Kasich want to know what CVR members think. If you want the people who represent you in Columbus and Washington DC to care about what you think, you can make you voice heard and make a difference just by joining the CVR for only a $10 annual membership.
We welcome the public, regardless of past party affiliation, at our monthly meetings. For more information, please go to www.cuyahogavalleygop.com.
And please stay tuned for future blogs about things that matter to you.
President, Cuyahoga Valley Republicans