High Noon in America: Will You Fight or Hide?
By coincidence, I was watching High Noon this week, just as polls showed President Trump trailing Biden by 9 to10 points nationally. Like the hero of High Noon, the president sometimes seems to be fighting alone. It's high noon in America, and after the election, only one man will be left standing.
For anyone who hasn't seen it, High Noon is the story of Will Kane (Gary Cooper) and his bride, Amy (Grace Kelly), who are married just as the vicious Miller gang returns to town seeking revenge against Kane for sending their leader to prison. Though he is free to leave town, Marshall Kane decides that he must remain until the next day, when the new marshal takes over. A devout Quaker, Amy declares that she will leave her husband if he decides to fight.
Though painful, Will Kane's position is not impossible. His path is clear because he lives by an unwavering code of values. He remains in town to defend his fellow citizens, even the many who don't appreciate his efforts. When everyone abandons him, he faces overwhelming odds — four to one — with only the help of his wife, who returns without his knowledge and saves his life in the shootout.
President Trump faces the same overwhelming odds. The political establishment, the Deep State, practically the entire media, academe, unions, minorities, environmentalists, foreign nations, and special interests of all stripes have piled on, outraged that the president would actually stand up for ordinary Americans. They thought Trump's promise to "drain the swamp" was just words — the usual political rhetoric that would be forgotten as soon as the candidate took office. That's what Joe Biden —" friend of the working man" — has been doing for 47 years. But President Trump is not a typical politician, and the establishment hate him for it because he exposes what they are.
The question is whether the American people will back the president by getting out to vote. In High Noon, a crucial point was that the citizenry of the fictional Hadleyville were too timid and afraid to join in the town's defense. Now is the time to defend America, and the only way to do so is by casting a vote for President Trump.
Believing itself to be so superior, the left now routinely resorts to tactics of suppressing news and opinion, lying, shoving, blocking access, rioting, and other actions of the mob. These are the tactics of the brownshirts and the blackshirts of the 1930s.
Notice that nearly all the verbal abuse, lying, shoving, and rioting comes from the left. Obama's nomination of Sonia Sotomayor did not spark a bitter confirmation hearing or the period of rioting, confrontation of senators, and media barrage that the Kavanaugh hearing did — or the threat to delay the confirmation vote and subsequent boycott of the hearings that the Barrett nomination did. Yet, in the judgement of many, Judge Kavanaugh and Judge Barrett were better qualified and less partisan than Judge Sotomayor. Anyone who has read Sotomayor's autobiography, My Beloved World, knows that she applies an ideological perspective rooted in a sense of youthful victimization. And yet conservatives did not resort to mob tactics in opposing Sotomayor's nomination. In fact, nine Republicans voted to confirm her.
Most Americans, and the Republicans who represent them, cling to the values of an older America in which political differences are resolved by democratic means and in which civility is still possible. They believe in the Golden Rule — how many on the left even know what that is? — and in patriotism, God, and family. They believe that capitalism works, but they are not out to destroy those who don't. They have never accepted the credo "by any means necessary," one that the left has long embraced. They are a different kind of human being than what exists on the left in the coastal cities and the university towns.
Now the left is out to reverse the Trump victory of 2016 and erase the accomplishments of Trump's presidency, which they see as a minor setback on the relentless march toward collectivism. Like the Miller gang, who believe they have a right to terrorize the sheepish citizenry of Hadleyville, the left believes that it has a right to permanent rule — because it is "better," more righteous, and more compassionate than the right. In fact, the left is merely more ruthless, selfish, and power-hungry.
When Will Kane stepped out to face the Miller gang, everyone knew how it must end. The 2020 election offers a similar choice between good and evil. President Trump is running not to enrich himself or his family. He is running not so that his son can earn huge "access" fees while performing no actual labor. The president is not a career politician who wishes to add eight more damaging years to a record of 47 years of failure. He does not seek permanent rule for his party by undermining his successor's administration. He seeks to reduce the burden of government on ordinary Americans and to ensure the freedom of all citizens.
At the end of High Noon, those who abandoned him now gather round and praise Will Kane, but Kane tosses his badge in the dust, and he and Amy ride away in disgust. His neighbors turned their backs on him at the crucial hour, and they've lost his respect.
Today, it's time for Americans to come to the president's aid. Don't abandon this extraordinary president, who has done so much to defend our national culture. The citizens of Hadleyville sat in their houses with drapes pulled and doors locked until the contest was over. Don't hide yourself away during this great presidential contest. Your most important responsibility as a citizen is to vote.
It is high noon in America, and today one champion stands between us and socialism. This time, we can't let our champion down. Don't let President Trump fight this battle alone. Stand by the president who's defending you.
Jeffrey Folks is the author of many books and articles on American culture including Heartland of the Imagination (2011).