Mr. Reagan’s lodestars were his faith in God, the Constitution and the strengths of a free, industrious people. Ms. Rubin urges us to cast him aside and replace him with, uh, whatever the cool people think is cool right now. “The public face of the GOP can no longer be aging, ill-tempered Reaganites such as John McCain and Jim DeMint,” Ms. Rubin scolds, “but must give way to a diverse, media-savvy generation that understands the America we actually live in. Only then can the essence of conservatism — the promotion of personal liberty — survive, and the GOP along with it.”
It’s not surprising that someone who throws John McCain into the same basket with Jim DeMint would reduce “the essence of conservatism” to “personal liberty.” The latter is the product of a society built on God-given, unalienable rights that governments cannot create and can only secure.
Personal liberty, while profoundly important, is not an end in itself. Personal responsibility is just as important. Without it, “conservatism” becomes a shallow quest for self-fulfillment, a sort of New Age Conservatism. At that point, it’s a short trip to one’s navel as the source of meaning.
Ronald Reagan championed industriousness, capitalism, personal sacrifice, patriotism, faith, kinship and community spirit. These things often interfere with one’s “personal liberty.” So do children, who help us to grow up and out of ourselves.
Another word often abused by doublespeak is “tolerance.”
It once meant living peaceably with those who might disagree. It grew out of the biblical conception of humility before God and the command to love one’s neighbor. Now, it means waging war on the moral order in pursuit of faux “equality.”
“Tolerance,” wrote G. K. Chesterton, “is the virtue of the man without convictions.” The people today who wield “tolerance” like a commissar’s bloody ax actually do not lack convictions; they just want to punish anyone who does not share theirs.
When pro basketball player Jason Collins “came out,” the media went nuts. He was toasted from coast to coast, received congratulatory phone calls from Barack Obama and Bill Clinton, and made magazine covers.
On May 1, Washington Post sportswriter Mike Wise joined the parade by bashing “Old Testament moral certainty” and denouncing anyone who “trumpeted their bigotry under the guise of ‘religious beliefs.’” There’s no hint in Mr. Wise’s vitriolic column that someone could possibly hold sincere, faith-based moral beliefs.
And that brings us to our final word, which is “brave.” Mr. Collins was widely hailed as brave, but it’s the few people who dared question the wisdom of his volitional behavior that are brave.
A lynch mob is chasing ESPN the Magazine writer Chris Broussard because he reiterated classic Christian doctrine to an interviewer:
“If you're openly living in unrepentant sin, whatever it may be – not just homosexuality, [but] adultery, fornication, premarital sex, whatever it may be – I believe that's walking in open rebellion to God and to Jesus Christ. So I would not characterize that person as a Christian, because I don't think the Bible would characterize him as a Christian."
Another brave soul is Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III, who on April 30 tweeted: “In a land of freedom we are held hostage by the tyranny of political correctness.”
Like openly devout quarterback Tim Tebow, Mssr.s Griffin and Broussard are the brave ones – rocks in a floodtide of insanity and cowardice.
As we watch word after word twisted into doublespeak by corrupt elites, it brings to mind George Orwell’s observation:
"Political language . . . is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind."