A Tweet Which Will Live in Infamy
Exactly twenty-five days after the death of Osama bin Laden, another historic event began its dominance of the political news cycle. While the president and those who surround him used the one-year anniversary of the raid that resulted in bin Laden's death to promote Obama's re-election, I suspect that the one-year anniversary of the event that took place on May 27, 2011 will not appear in any commencement addresses that the president or his vice president or any of his secretaries or czars will be giving in the near future.
This Sunday of Memorial Day weekend marked the one-year anniversary of a tweet which will live in infamy. It was a tweet that torpedoed the career of a young rising political star. This tweet involved a picture that turned out to be worthy of far more than 1,000 words while causing the person who tweeted it to become a man of few words, most of which were lies.
Just because the publisher of an obscene magazine offers to spend millions of dollars to uncover dirt on enemies of your political party, that doesn't mean members of your political party should participate in activities found in the pages of that magazine. If you do, don't be surprised if there are repercussions. Conversely, as we have recently learned, some of what you see in that magazine is the result of the Photoshop "artistry" of a twisted mind. The magazine should not be read as a how-to book for those aspiring to be respected public figures.
While this was far from the first immoral act of an American political figure (see Alexander Hamilton/Maria Reynolds for that ignominious distinction), it is another reminder of these words penned by Thomas Jefferson:
What duty does a citizen owe to the government that secures the society in which he lives? What can it expect and rightly demand of him in support of itself? A nation that rests on the will of the people must also depend on individuals to support its institutions in whatever ways are appropriate if it is to flourish. Persons qualified for public office should feel some obligation to make that contribution. If not, public service will be left to those of lesser qualification, and the government may more easily become corrupted.
Jefferson's words are timeliness. Anthony Weiner (you all knew I was referring to Weiner, right?) proved that when We the (average, ordinary, hardworking, good, moral, ethical, freedom- and liberty-loving) People of the United States of America choose not to serve, we are left having to vote for "those of lesser qualifications." How many times have you said or have heard others say, "This election I am voting for the lesser of two evils"?
After years of voting into office people less qualified than ourselves, we find ourselves living in an America that in many ways resembles the monarchy that Jefferson and the other Founders risked everything to be free of. By you and I not risking a whole lot less than what the Founders risked, we have allowed a ruling class to take control of our constitutional republic. Jefferson said that a government without you and me may more easily become corrupted. How did he know? Whether it is outright corruption where millions, billions, and now trillions of dollars disappear without any accountability, or the corrupting of our Constitution to expand government far beyond the limited enumerated powers stated therein, corruption has gone viral.
In 2010, many constitutional conservatives stepped forward and are now in Washington making a difference. These are citizen-politicians who pledged not to be career politicians, to serve for a limited number of years, come back home, go back to their real jobs, and live with the rest of us.
The new District 21 U.S. House of Representatives seat for the State of Florida, a district adjacent to mine, currently has no one from the GOP seeking the office. A person was running, but that person dropped out last week. The district is heavily Democratic, and the incumbent is well-liked. A GOP victory is highly unlikely. In 2010, the Democratic candidate received 62.9% of the vote.
Despite this, someone should run for this seat, if for no other reason than to try to speak to as many people as possible and deliver the conservative message. Perhaps it will result in a few more votes for the GOP candidates for president and Senate. As we have learned, in Florida, every vote truly does count. The biggest immediate obstacle to someone running at this late date is getting the 2,300 Florida registered voters (no illegal aliens or dead people) to sign a petition to qualify the candidate to be on the ballot. The deadline for turning in the signatures is noon on June 8.
I have been reading and rereading the words of Thomas Jefferson quoted above. Is he writing to me? If so, how in the world does one fit into his daily life the time and energy to collect 2,300 signatures before the deadline? I wonder if a tweet or two will find me some people who can help.
Marc Hopin is an accountant who has also written a children's book, The Tooth Fairy Needs Your Teeth.