"...there is one higher office than president and I would call that patriot."
Dear Young (and Older) Veterans,
When you come home, and have completed your military service and are a civilian again for good, please run for public office. Right away.
Because, gentlemen and ladies, we still need you. We need candidates for office who are tried and true neighbors of the ordinary American. We need representatives who put the welfare of the USA and its people before political expediency and personal gain.
From our first president, George Washington, to our local governors and mayors, America has always relied on her Brave to guide her safely through the calms as well as the storms.
We need people who will read bills themselves instead of taking the word of the lobbyists who wrote them. Who will debate bills honestly on the floor of Congress instead of rubber stamping the trade-off deals their aides made in the back rooms. Who will insist that voting on bills happen in Congress and not be polled in advance.
We need people who still have the capacity to notice and say out loud "That's not right!" when they get to Congress and discover the hidden suppuration and game playing and elitism and favoritism.
We need Americans who commit to equally and fairly serve all the citizens of all colors of our land. We need citizens who, no matter where they were born or what their ancestry, pledge allegiance to only one government and one country: the United States of America. We need citizens who are not swayed by the influence of wealth or investment, who do not make decisions based on "talking points".
We need you.
Throw your hat in the ring for State Representative, or for Congress. Run for school board, or county commission or city council. Your political party has local offices that need strong leadership and integrity in one local party will empower others and spread throughout the state.
Don't listen to anyone who says there are already too many people running or that the insiders have it locked up or that you don't have "experience". Don't pay any attention to those that claim only money will win the race: you know better, you've seen what sheer dedication to winning freedom can do. Pick an office that needs the powerful hand of integrity and just do it.
Be yourself. You don't have to make promises or exaggerate. Just meet people. Tell your story. Listen to their stories and concerns. Ask them questions. Ask their name and write it down - people will be glad you want to remember them.
Be cheap. Run a lean campaign. Buy boxes of business cards, give stacks of them to supporters and leave a few in every public place you can get away with. Buy locally. Wear a name tag constantly.
Be yourself. Follow the law and be ethical. Find and follow the regulations about how your military service can be used and pictured in your campaign.
Be yourself. Enlist the VFW and the American Legion and the DAV and the Gold Star Mothers and AmBucs and every other patriotic Veterans or business organization to campaign for you by talking about you throughout their day and leaving your business cards everywhere they go.
Fax press releases about every event you attend and every issue you comment on to every newspaper, weekly, shopper, radio station, school, college, bingo hall, and community center in not only your constituent counties but in all surrounding ones as well.
No matter what church you belong to, go visit a different congregation every Sunday and Sabbath. Wear your name tag. Be honest, and be yourself.
Put signs on your cars and drive friendly. Take the long route whereever you go.
Genially annoy the crap out of everyone you know who's eligible to support you and everyone they know until they all have linked to your facebook page in every email and put your signs in their yards and your bumper stickers on their cars and signed up for specific dates to go door to door with you, a member of your family or one of your veteran supporters.
You do not have to win. It is your candidacy that matters.
Seeing you stand up, and hearing what you have to say will start other people like you thinking and it will encourage them to take the first step. If you can do it, they will feel maybe they can too. And then you'll have won back American liberty in your town or your state no matter what happens in the election.
But do remember that running for office is kind of like hitting home runs: it usually takes a couple of strike outs before you knock it out of the park.
We need you.
Please, stand up - or roll up - as a candidate - now. As soon as you get out of the service and it's legal for you to do so without ethics issues. You can be in politics and still go to school, still start a family, still work toward your dream career (most politicians still have to either be millionaires or work for a living).
But if you wait until you've made your fortune you might get sidetracked.
Worse, there's a chance you'll get used to making little compromises in the wrong things. Little compromises that reward hesitation and erode self-trust.
Run for office while you are still be able to hear the confident voice of your soul that sent you into battle prepared to defend the Most Exceptional Country that has ever been or ever will be.
Run for office and make use of the strength of will that brought you out conditioned to captain your part of the Most Exceptional Country that ever was, and prepared to guarantee it always will be.
So don't hesitate. Be yourself. Bring your bravery to bear on the government of these United States, our towns and schools.
Bring your clear-eyed humility to face down the scandalmongers without being deterred or delayed in your objective.
Bring your respect for the traditions and memories earned by those who went ahead, and your commitment to preserve "these truths" for those who will follow after.
Bring your understanding that sometimes failure is essential because capitulation is far far worse. And that falling down is just a signal to get up again. And again. And again.
Bring your confidence in a bright future for all hard-working Americans.
Bring your capacity for decisive action, your willingness to accept risk for the greater good, your visceral comprehension of what real discipline and honor are and how they are lived.
You are another Greatest Generation, and America needs you still.
Start now while you know what it is all worth.
Bring your true self.
How awesome would that be? A government of Americans who are all tried and true, who stayed true.
All it takes to make that happen is you.