The last-ditch effort to restore America

All my life, I thought I was doing my part.  I read the news.  I made the effort to understand the issues.  I followed the debates.  Then, after exercising my best judgment, I voted for the candidates who most closely resembled my positions.  Done.  Repeat every two years.  

I was wrong.  I know that now because the results are painfully obvious.  The nation fell into decline, and but for two brief reprieves under Presidents Reagan and Trump, the decline became a free fall.  The ship of state is more a shipwreck of state, and it's getting worse.  

In the midst of all this doom and gloom, there are two glimmers of hope.  I hesitate to use that phrase, because too often, "glimmers of hope" have been but flashes in the pan.  I tread carefully, but hopefully, recognizing how my error can be corrected.  

My error was to think I could do my part simply by being an informed voter and then voting.  Others, bolder than I, are instead stepping forward, not figuratively, but literally.  They are attending school board meetings, speaking out, castigating their elected officials in person.  Some of them are actively campaigning against the re-election of corrupt or negligent officials.  A few are even running for office to replace them.  

While these bold actions are highly worthy of praise, they do remain, alas, glimmers of hope, reminiscent of the TEA Party movement of 2009.  I participated in the massive march on Washington, D.C. in August of that year.  At the time, I felt a certain elation, in that I was physically doing something.  It was the most direct involvement I had ever had in politics, other than voting.  Sadly, it was little more than symbolic, was utterly ignored by most of the press, and was soon submerged by the elections (to Congress) of Republican politicians who only pretended to be conservative.

At least we were not arrested and imprisoned without counsel.  

The other glimmer of hope is that a few members of a few state legislatures are aggressively investigating the election fraud that placed Joe Biden in the Oval Office.  This, again, is praiseworthy, but by itself, it will go nowhere.  We have seen too many "investigations," too few convictions, and only rare imprisonments resulting from legislative actions of this sort.  

We need more than marches, more than demonstrations, and much more coordination among conservative activists.  We need armies of us to be trained in the mechanics of political activism.  We need formal organizations.  We must crowd the offices of elected officials.  

One of the most important things we can demand is total transparency.  Vote-counting was hidden from the public in too many instances in 2020.  We must never tolerate that again.  We must show up in the counting rooms in the hundreds, with recording devices, and refuse to be partitioned or expelled from meaningful observation.  We must be there 24/7.  And while we're at it, there is no reason to use computers for voting.  Paper ballots are far less subject to fraud.  

Likewise, public school classrooms must be under constant video surveillance by the parents of students, and by taxpayers in general.  It is ludicrous to claim there is a right to privacy in a taxpayer-funded classroom.  It is a public forum, and no one should be excluded from knowing exactly what the teachers are saying to our children.  

These are only the beginnings of what must be done.  Public contracts must be negotiated in open meetings, with continuous public input.  Florida's sunshine laws, which forbid secret meetings among government officials, must be adopted nationwide.  Social networking platforms must, by law, be treated as public utilities, without political favoritism.  

None of this can be accomplished passively.  Without massive citizen participation, direct participation, and aggressive activism, we will continue to lose the fight for freedom.  

We were given a republic.  Can we keep it?  

Image via Pxhere.

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