During the Texas Republican Party’s state convention I had the privilege and honor of nominating my father, Keith Rothra, to be a Presidential Elector for the 2012 electoral college vote. Although this honor filled my heart with great joy, there was much that brought sorrow at the convention — and it wasn’t any particular group or coalition. I witnessed people on almost every side engage in things that saddened me, all the while it was bathed in the clichés of principles, liberty, conservatism, and even Christianity.
Of all the speeches I heard over those three days, there was one critically needed speech that was never given. Thus, I have written it and present it here. It is a speech not just for the Republican party, but for all political parties, social organizations, churches, and every individual American.
We Stand On The Precipice – by John L. Rothra
Our nation stands on the precipice of tyranny, a tyranny rising all around us. Governments imposing ever imprisoning mandates and regulations on its citizenry, stifling life and business. Religious liberty is pitted against collective security and health. Morality is constantly redefined downward, so that depravity becomes normalcy. And the dreams of our forbearers transform into fantasies for the youth.
Our nation stands on the precipice of tyranny. Fear is exploited on high as a means to direct and dictate greater impositions on individuals, while freedom slowly evolves into an endangered species. Ignorance and apathy are promoted to ensure success in degrading the values and principles of liberty. Meanwhile, liberty, freedom, and even security deteriorate around us.
Our nation stands on the precipice of tyranny. While that which once defined our nation dies, in the heart of man nothing changes, save possibly the rise of pride, slothfulness, and greed. As the nation perishes, institutions boasting their defense of individual liberty and freedom strive less for those which they claim, and instead endeavor to secure their own authority. Business men and women, politicians at all levels, and others bellow of their service to others and to freedom, all the while ensuring their own cadre’s power, profit, or often both. Fights and disputes arise over minutiae and trivial phrases within statements, platforms, and creeds that carry little-to-no genuine weight and are rarely, if ever, enforced or enforceable.
Our nation stands on the precipice of tyranny—not from above or outside, but one self-imposed, and even invited, sought, desired, and too often worshipped. Simplifying its symptoms, and disregarding the underlying causes, institutions and individuals ensure their own power and success; they often define such success and power enhancements as the solution, thus creating a false hope, a social and political idol. Individuals demand sacrifices and reductions as means of restoration, yet denounce even the thought of accepting such change in their own lives. Our nation stands on the precipice while institutions, parties, organizations, and individuals offer tacit consent to the nation’s impending demise; many even assist in her plunge.
Our nation stands on the precipice of tyranny, but it need not remain there; it can be restored to a state wherein liberty—true liberty—is protected and our nation’s future ensured. Just as Apostle Paul condemned the religious institutionalism of his day—those who boasted “‘I am of Paul,’ and ‘I of Apollos,’ and ‘I of Cephas’” (1 Cor 1:12)—we too must forsake institutionalism in the political realm. Every individual must turn away from those things which permit and promote the nation’s demise. For this nation to withdraw from the precipice on which she stands, we must as individuals rediscover and implement in all aspects of our lives those values that defined our nation for centuries: faith in God, love for neighbor. And anything short of genuine faith and authentic love aborts hope.