May the Spirit be with You
We are now in the traditional Holiday Season. A season full of fun, festivities, self-reflection, generosity, and human kindness. We are reminded of the blessings we have received over the past year, the loved ones in our lives, and those less fortunate than us – to whom we can lend a helping hand. Certainly there are countless opportunities for us to volunteer for worthwhile causes and give selflessly to others – not just during the Holiday Season, but year round.
Basis of the Season
The historic basis of the Holiday Spirit has its roots in religious celebration. Many of us, during this time of year make an effort to renew our religious convictions, reaffirm our love of God, and emphasize kindness to our brothers and sisters in humanity – to treat others the way we would hope to be treated, even in trying circumstances. It is undoubtedly easier said than done, but it is very much worthwhile to get out of your comfort zone and give others the benefit of the doubt and treat them kindly; including those of other political persuasions, backgrounds, cultures, religions, and life-styles. While we do not always agree with each other (sometimes passionately), I think we can all agree that kindness and compassion make the world a better place.
A matter of conscience
We are all born with a conscience – the inner voice that tells us what is right and wrong. For example, universally, we instinctively know that lying, cheating, stealing, and murder, are wrong and can cause serious problems in our lives. On the other hand we also know that love, kindness, charity, and compassion, are noble and virtuous traits. Where does a conscience come from? It is my belief that the conscience were are born with comes from God. It is the grace of God in action in our lives – directing us to choose the right path. Without human conscience, the Holiday Spirit could not exist.
Freedom of Religion
As I have mentioned, the Holiday Spirit has its origins in religious celebration. We are fortunate in this country that we have the right to religious freedom. This right is an important cornerstone to our countries’ foundation. After all, it was the search for religious freedom that initially brought people to our shores four centuries ago. It cannot be taken for granted. Freedom of religion is vastly different than freedom from religion. Freedom from religion would remove religion from our public sphere. Religion was and is part and parcel of American society. It has played an important role in defining our moral and ethical “clarity” since the very beginnings of our political system. As the Declaration of Independence eloquently states – “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness”. The Holiday Spirit, in and of itself, underlines the importance of religious freedom.
The Holiday Spirit unifies us. Its core principles of gratitude, acceptance, love, kindness, and compassion, bring us together and serve a higher and nobler purpose. It is good to take the time to reflect upon our lives, to understand and appreciate the good things that we have, cherish the people we love, recognize the things we can do better, and the things we can do to help others. This Holiday Season, may the Holiday Spirit make itself known to all of us, and may we make the world a better place because of it.
Steve Nickerson is a 26 year resident of Mansfield, and a veteran of the US Marine Corps. He is the Vice Chairman of the Mansfield Republican Town Committee – www.mansfieldgop.com,. The opinions he expresses are his own and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the committee members.
nearly 2 decades the Democrat party has made a living off of identity politics. This is where people are subjectively categorized into various victim and non-victim groups and then pitted against each as a means in order to further liberal ends. The ends being the relentless push for power of the progressive agenda.
The assigned victims in identity politics are told that life is inherently unfair to them and that they are victims of bias, bigotry, misogyny, and every phobia known (and unknown). Certainly, the left will continue to invent new phobias as necessary in order to keep their grasp on people (and especially their votes – which is the point). If a person or group fits into a victim category, according to progressives, there is no alternative but to depend on government to solve their problems and to prevent further abuse by the hated few (mostly identified as – whites, conservatives, heterosexuals, religious, family values, etc) – with all of their built-in, so-called privileges. Identity politics does not argue points or ideas when challenged; it responds by name calling as a way to shut down all discussion. Sneering, pejorative terms such as “racist, homophobe, bigot”, etc. are used freely by the left, to the point where they have lost their true meaning.
A built in problem with identity politics is that it purposely, by design, is not inclusive. To suit its purposes, the enemies of the victims must be defined and savagely abused. This brings me to the election of 2016, where the tipping point of identity politics was reached. Hillary Clinton, in her famous “deplorables” speech described Trump voters as quote “racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamaphobic — you name it”, “a basket of deporables”. Once you denigrate 10’s of millions of the electorate as “deplorable, and unredeemable”, as Clinton did in the service of identity politics, those same voters will never cast a vote in your favor; decidedly weakening the chances of winning the election. The other problem with identity politics is that the victims have to remain victims. There is no way out (according to progressives). Once a person is no longer in a victim category the chances that he or she will vote democrat is vastly reduced.
It is my sense that the tipping point of identity politics has been reached with the last Presidential Election and we are slowly moving away from it and more towards an inclusive political approach that speaks to all American citizens