Saturday, May 11, 2013

"I Am Compelled to Fight"

“I volunteered to fight in this war.  I have risen through the ranks and now find myself on the front lines with an army of New Media warriors following me into the fray.  It is no longer a choice to fight; I am compelled to fight.”  -Andrew Breitbart

I did volunteer to fight in this war, fifteen years ago when I began my involvement in politics.  It happened this way: there was a meeting at my church talking about how to attend political conventions and learn the political process to promote prolife views.  I definitely wanted in on that.  So I did more than vote in the general election for the first time that year.  I voted in my first Republican primary, and attended my first Republican convention.  And it was like crack.

In the years since, I’ve had opportunities to work on campaigns, attend candidate forums, walk blocks and make phone calls, and meet a ton of dedicated people who love this country and want to see it governed well. 

Then the financial crisis threatened us.  Then the bailouts happened.  Then THIS happened.

So then I had an opportunity to start a tea party, organize protests and rallies, become a media spokesperson, and give speeches and presentations.  Oh, and meet, educate, and train a ton MORE people who love this country and want to see it governed well.

My philosophy has always been, since I started in politics, that I had a responsibility to share my knowledge.  If I knew how to do something, I wanted to teach others how to do it too.  If I learned about an issue on the ballot, I wanted others to have the same information. 
Sometimes that has made me a challenge to people who just don’t eat and breathe and sleep politics.  I get that.  In fact, my own family blocks me on social media because they know what my feed looks like.  But by the same token, I get phone calls asking for information about candidates.  I have people who drive by my house before each election to check the signs in my yard.  Being a political junkie has that upside: the ability to influence others.

People have urged me to run for office for years.  My stock answer: “No.  Never.”  I’ve seen how difficult elections are.  I’ve seen some great people chewed up and spit out by the stress and the strain of running.  Campaigns are often brutal, nasty, frustrating, and draining.  I’ve never felt called to run for any office; I much prefer being in the campaign, working behind the scenes.

Until now.

As a tea party leader, I’ve wanted to be independent of the Republican Party for many reasons.  I wanted to be free to hold Republicans accountable.  I wanted to avoid the charge of being a Republican auxiliary.  I wanted to focus on the core beliefs of tea party: fiscal responsibility, free markets, following the Constitution.  I handed the precinct over to another passionate volunteer so as not to shortchange either the tea party or the Republican Party.  But I’ve stayed involved in Republican politics, even serving on the Rules Committee at the Republican Party of Texas’s State Convention last summer.

But my county is in trouble.  The largest county in the largest Red State has been turning blue before my eyes.  I’ve seen what progressive policies are doing in other states, in other counties in my own state.  I’ve seen what they’re doing to us as a nation.  And I can’t watch from the sidelines anymore. 

I don’t have the confidence required to believe the current leadership in the Harris County Republican Party is able to handle the Battleground Texas assault, the technology gap, the lack of strategic partnerships or the messaging shortcomings we face.  And I refuse to sit through another election cycle wishing I could do more.

It is no longer a choice to fight.  I am compelled to fight.

I’m announcing that I am going to run for Harris CountyRepublican Party Chair in 2014. 
There will be a more formal launch coming soon, but I wanted to let all of you know my intentions and ask for your support with tackling the issues we face.  As I put together the campaign organization, I’ll be asking for your help, whether you live in Harris County or across the country.  This county is rapidly becoming Ground Zero in the political struggle against progressive policies, and it is going to take a massive effort to fight them back. 

It’s going to take an army.


Saturday, April 20, 2013


This week was a kick in the gut.  

Boston. West, TX. Boston again. Other events that didn't get so much publicity.  I lost sleep and had my heart repeatedly broken all week long.  It's hard being a news junkie.  

And I didn't have anyplace to put my frustration, my ache, my anger.  Then I remembered this old place, and so here I am.  I know I'm a fail for letting it go five months without posting, but I've been kind of busy writing elsewhere.

In the wake of the Boston Marathon bombing, speculation ran wild on the type of perpetrators who may have done this evil.  Various media asshats showed their true colors this week.  This is the one that finally sent my rage nuclear.

Andrew Breitbart's book isn't titled "Righteous Indignation" for nothing.  He was livid that the good, decent, hard-working Americans who embraced tea party values were maligned time and again.  It infuriated him that people like us were blamed, vilified, lied about, and marginalized in the mainstream media, all with the aim to defeat our efforts to make this country better.  His mission was to take on the mainstream media, call them out, expose them, and rob them of their power to define us.  He encouraged us to become citizen journalists, citizen ombudsmen, citizen activists.  And people are answering the call.

I just wish it were more.  

Every day I fear that there aren't enough of us doing enough to fight back at everything they're throwing at us.  I already know there's never going to be a day when this fight is over, not in my lifetime.  I'll never retire from this, not really.  And I am not saddled with a full-time job around which I have to work my activism, so I'm able to absorb more than a lot of people.  

My heart is broken for all those people lost this week, and their families and friends.  But at the same time (and I don't think it diminishes anything the victims are going through) my heart is also battered and weary over the uphill battle the rest of us face.  We shouldn't have to fight so hard just to keep a good name, but we do, and there's no amount of wishing that will change it.  

Saul Alinsky was a pretty awful bastard, but I do find this quote helpful:

As an organizer I start where the world is, as it is, not as I would like it to be. That we accept the world as it is does not in any sense weaken our desire to change it into what we believe it should be — it is necessary to begin where the world is if we are going to change it to what we think it should be.

So that's where I think my head is going to be for the next few weeks.  I need to think about the stark reality we face.  I need to come to terms with exactly what the situation is on the ground in America.  And then, God willing, I'll be able to start thinking of ways to change it.