By Greg Tomlin, President of Christus Films
Note: This article is a response to a recently published Harvard University study which claimed to prove, among other things, that persons attending Fourth of July parades tended to be more patriotic and to vote Republican, whereas those who didn’t tend to be Democrats.
The title of this little essay is not indicative of my position. It is what I can only imagine is the mercurial rant of liberal New England, socialist elite parents who recently had their fears confirmed that 4th of July parades and other exhibitions of patriotism breed Republicans.
After all, Harvard confirmed it in a new study, timed for release just before our nation's most profound and sacred holiday.
I'm not "joshing" here, as the patriotic folk in rural Texas say. The press release for the Harvard study claims, "Attending one Fourth of July [parade/event] before age 18 increases the likelihood of identifying as a Republican by at least 2 percent and voting for the Republican candidate by 4 percent. It also increases voter turnout by 0.9 percent and boosts political campaign contributions by 3 percent." In an era of narrow voting margins, we can't have that, now can we?
We've known since the 1960s that most graduates of Harvard are liberal, most professors at Harvard are socialists (even Marxists), and most research coming out of Harvard confirms what we've known for years: Liberals hate America.
They hate it because, to them, it is representative of what is wrong with the world. They see it as the harbinger of the world's wealth. They see it as an imperialist power. They see it as (dare I say?) an "evil empire." And they see "these hicks" who have the gall to attend parades to exhibit their love "pro Deo, pro Patria" or "for God, for country," as undereducated, disloyal to the "collective," and simple people who cling to God and guns.
I recently had a discussion with an old acquaintance in which she said there were soon to be only two classes in America: upper and lower, rich and poor. She said that was all the fault of the fat cats on Wall Street and the Republicans who won't raise taxes on the wealthy. She lamented that the "middle class" was dying.
I told her that I rejected the notion of "classes" in America. I will not have my views defined by the ideology of Karl Marx, Antonio Gramsci and Saul Alinsky, where the bourgeoisie are at war with the proletariat openly or in the institutions that undergird society. I reject the "Progressive" rhetoric from Wilson to Roosevelt, Johnson to Carter, and Clinton to Obama.
But then I had an epiphany: "There are two nations within our borders." I think I've known it for some time, but in light of recent events, it has never been more clear to me.
My nation is the United States of America, the greatest, most God-fearing nation in the world. It is the nation where countless men have fought and died to preserve the right of pulling a lever in a voting booth or sitting in a church pew on Sunday morning without looking over your shoulder or, worse, meeting in a cellar with the rats.
It is the America where the masses "yearning to be free" still come, obey our laws and start from nothing to achieve success. It is the America where life is prized and where neighbors still care for each other. It is the America where the blue collar man who works for 12 hours a day may possess more common sense on budgeting than the Washington bureaucrat with a Harvard MBA and 30 years of government largess under his belt.
It is the America that is still shocked when they see two men kissing on television. It is the America that waits to make a purchase until it can pay cash or, at least, make the payments. It is the America where being right isn't a political position, but a way of living morally. It is the America where you need not disrobe for an invasive search before you board the plane for you flight to see your grandkids. It is a nation that stresses personal responsibility.
That is my America. That is the nation in which I grew up and cut my political teeth. It is a prosperous nation that, by its efforts to succeed, makes all of the nations of the world better. It is a nation that leads. It is a nation that realizes it is, in fact, a "city upon a hill." The world looks to it, and in times of war, famine and political turmoil, the world asks, "What will America do?"
But things are different for Amerika. Amerika is not the land of the free; it is the land of moral inconsistency -- the land where the name of the Son of God cannot be mentioned on television unless as a slur, but all other manner of speech rolls off the tongue like the verbal sewage that it is. It is a land where this same name cannot be voiced in a prayer, unless the speaker is willing to accept the jail time. It is the land where your founding documents guarantee life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, but the government dictates what kind of lightbulbs you must use.
Amerika is the place where people say, "I support the troops, but I don't support their mission." It is the place where other people have decided, contrary to our most noble traditions, that we need not be as free politically or religiously as we used to be. It is where Christians cannot post a Nativity scene, but a Muslim holy day can appear on a stamp issued by the U.S. Postal Service. It is the place where people say, "It is my body and if I want to terminate my pregnancy that is my right, but you ... you accept this healthcare legislation. We will decide for you what you must do with your body."
It is the land where liberal elites see education, rather than faith, as the solution to our problems. It is the land where the traditions of private property and accumulated wealth are thrown out in favor of progressive taxation and redistribution to slack-jawed yokuls who produce children at a rate similar to rabbits. It is a nation where getting ahead in your career is much easier if you can check the box for certain ethnicities when you apply for a job, regardless of your level of education and experience. It is a nation where an effort to liberate 50 million people and establish a form of democracy in the Middle East is seen as unnecessary.
Amerika is the place where people believe if we all just join hands and sing the Beatles "All you need is love," everyone will get along. It is the nation that doesn't understand that there are, in fact, around 120 million radical Islamists in the world that would like to see every Christian, Jew, Buddhist and Hindu submit to their conception of God and their rule -- or die. And it is the nation that fails to see that should they ever gain the momentum and advantage, the remaining 2 billion Muslims would join the radicals in their global jihad.
And Amerika is the place where I dare not send my children across the street to their grandmother's house without watching them from door to door for fear that harm may befall them.
How sad it is that this Amerika will consistently challenge what I teach my children as we sit around the dinner table and as we read God's Word every night. It will tell them there is no God or that "God, whatever that is for you," can be approached in many ways, that their parents are old-fashioned and even stupid, and that they can do with their bodies what they wish. It will tell them that the choice to kill an infant in the womb is theirs, but wearing the clothes they choose to school is not -- that they must wear khaki pants and blue shirts and tennis shoes of one color.
That, my friends, is the othernation -- Amerika.
So what do we do? We fight.
No, of course, we do not fight with weapons made with hands. We fight at the dinner table, on the couch at home, at the local school board, in our schools, at the city council, in the halls of Congress, and for the presidency. We fight for the survival of America. We teach our children to be holy, for their God is holy. We teach them to love Christ above all others. We teach them virtue.
We teach them the principles embodied in the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. We teach them the great political ideas from Madison, Jefferson, Goldwater, Reagan, Kirk, Hayek and Friedman. We teach them financial responsibility. We teach girls to be women and boys to be men -- real men who can make a decision without consulting their mother. We teach them endurance and patience. We teach them love of country and love for their neighbors.
We fight on our knees in prayer every day for them and for our nation.
And we take our children to the 4th of July parade.