It’s ok to wear Republican Red

Well-known conservative writer David French recently wrote a National Review article criticizing the idea that conservatives should become more openly partisan. In that article, French mentions a call in which he was told to “put on that red jersey and get on the field”, something he believes is politically and morally wrong.

Ironically, he starts the piece by listing the very reasons why it makes sense to don Republican red. Democrats regularly wear the blue jersey in their effort to guide the direction of the country. In the past, they stood united against questions about various Clinton improprieties. Now, they stand united against Republican tax bills, health plans, and executive orders. In the future, they will stand united against any item on the president’s agenda, just because.

Meanwhile, the members of the GOP stand divided on a number of important issues; so important, in fact, that continued failure to reconcile their differences may endanger America’s future.

I’m not suggesting that blind loyalty is the answer. Every citizen should examine the issues with objectivity and reason. Unfortunately, this approach finds little traction with the Left these days. Democrats have made it clear that any policy put forth by Republicans will be met by a solid wall of criticism, lawsuits, and other shenanigans, aided and abetted by a complicit press.

Yet, you’ll see few such displays of conservative solidarity; seen any Republican marches in support of building a border wall lately?

David French points to the collapse of Democrat fortunes in 2016 but, presidency aside, there are more Democrats in the House and Senate now than before the election. More importantly, in addition to gains on the electoral battlefield, the Left is winning the culture war. They have steamrolled the country like a juggernaut; few remember, for example, a time when health care for all wasn’t considered a main responsibility of government. Extremist Liberals have claimed the campuses as their own territory, and even tried to change the definition of free speech. Federal courts regularly block the conservative agenda. The collection of conservative scalps is a popular blood sport, and the media doesn’t even pretend to report the news fairly anymore. It goes on and on.

You might tell me that all of the above is, for lack of a better word, “deplorable”. Republicans using the same tactics would be mean-spirited and unprofessional; conservatives, after all, are above all that. Perhaps, but if Republican principles are morally correct, isn’t it appropriate to aggressively put forth these principles, instead of standing idly by or, worse, quarreling with each other on how to present them to the public?

Mr. French tells us that it’s wrong to lie, even if the opposition has few qualms about it.  But conservatives don’t have to lie; there are plenty of legitimate reasons why conservative policies are good for the nation. If you don’t believe this is true, it’s time for some serious self-evaluation.

Republicans should, steadfastly and in unison, support the measures needed to regain our standing in the world and improve the lives of our people. Blind loyalty shouldn’t be your motivation. Rather, you should recognize that the only practical way to achieve these goals is with a united front. Perhaps the press will look at Republican partisanship and cry foul, but you must decide: Is standing together to save the country from its perilous course worth distressing the media? You bet.

I don’t claim to have the eloquence of David French, nor do I deny that our president is, well, less than eloquent. I believe, however, that many of Donald Trump’s goals are worth our support: These include controlling our borders, supporting law enforcement, reclaiming jobs sent overseas, and showing strength as a nation. President Trump can’t reach these goals alone. He needs everyone in his party to, honestly and with integrity, put on the red jersey and get on the field. Forget the petty squabbles and lock arms; it may be the most important thing you can do for America right now.

Joe Alton