What makes the Old Party so Grand?

When people hear I am the chairman of the GOP in the county, some have responded with statements such as, “I’d have never pegged you as a Republican; why do you hate this or that?” I have grown to internally giggle at this statement, primarily because, often, they are very wrong about my opinions on the topic they are suggesting they now know about me.

My beliefs and why I identify in the Republican Party has nothing to do with what I hate. In fact, quite the opposite. It has to do with what I love, liberty. Individual liberty endowed to us all by our Creator. The fact that we are all unique, and that is a beautiful thing and He provided us our right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

I do not like categories, and I do not like assumptions based on associations. The lumping of them together to suggest one can or does know about another’s unique beliefs based on a single word (Republican) is perhaps one of the only things I would say I’m strongly against. And in fact, many of my closest friends, people I certainly do not hate but in fact love, happen to have opposite views on what many would consider “hot” issues. Why, because we can be civil, and we respect each other’s unique take. We concede that both want what is best for the country, we simply have different ideas of how to provide what is best.

What makes the GOP so grand is the basic core beliefs that the members share. Beliefs including individual liberties and rights endowed to us by our Creator. A belief that we should be serving and servicing our country and not looking for what the country will do for us. An understanding that regulations limit liberties and create power to government, the orchestrators creating the regulations. An understanding that the government does not make money, it takes and then redistributes, often not falling in line with the established purvey. Has the GOP or certain GOP members ever faltered or strayed outside these lines; of course. But the core root of the party; the constituents are steadfast and strongly united.

My inner root core is simple; The federal government was founded and created for five basic purposes and they even spell it out in the Declaration of Independence and Constitution for us in rather simple terms;

• in order to form a more perfect union = in order to create a better country

• establish justice = create a means to adjudicate disputes/courts

• ensure domestic tranquility = protect individuals from being coerced by other individuals/safety such as peace officers

• provide for the common defense = defend the country/military

• promote the general welfare = provide equal opportunity for all (“promote” not “provide”)

• and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity = protect your inalienable rights as established in the Declaration of Independence

So, very simply put:

1. Create a means to adjudicate disputes/courts

2. Protect individuals from being coerced by other/peace officers and law enforcement

3. Defend the country/military

4. Provide equal opportunity for all

5. Protect your inalienable rights as established in the Declaration of Independence

Everything beyond that is an abuse of power and should be checked. Everything beyond that falls out of the purvey of the government.

The GOP is ‘old’ because these core beliefs were established a long time ago and have stayed true through the ages. As we grow nearer to the 2022 and then 2024 elections, I only suggest, I only hope all constituents will ask themselves, “Do I trust myself more than I trust the government with what to do with my money and what rules I have to follow?”

John Perkins, Gibson County GOP Chairman

The future

As I write, the world is overcome by uncertainty and fear of the future. Some fear for their financial future; others, for their health. Some fear for their loved ones; others, for themselves. Whatever the situation at this time, and weather or not COVID-19 wreaks havoc on our lives or not, one thing is certain — life is difficult.

Whatever our situation, the people of Jesus possess in them a hope that transcends the awful reality of today. It’s quite remarkable, isn’t it, what the spread of a microscopic virus can do to alter the landscape of our world?

At our church, Hillside United Methodist, this hope is echoed loudly in the lyric of a hymn we we sing, “Let there be peace on earth, and let it begin with me.” This hymn reminds us that we live in a global world. It sounds wonderful, does it not? this, of course, is an impossibility i the world in which we now life. However, based on the great and precious promise of Jesus, there is even now — this every moment — the possibility of “fear(ing) no more” when it comes to sickness, sorrow, pain and death. Whatever happens, we trust our faith as a powerful force in our lives.

As the retired pastor of a great church that is filled with people — including many elderly, “Greatest Generation” people, also, our church is lucky to have younger adults, middle age adults, a great week day program for the community and a strong youth program.

Over the years i have walked alongside men and women who have faced life without bitterness and despair, but with a settled peace in their hearts, joy on their faces and certain declarations about how their best days are still ahead of them. I have learned a few things about fearing the future from them.

I have learned there are scores of people who have endured deep sorrow and loss and who have done this exceptionally well. It’s not that these men and women have denied suffering or somehow swept death under the rug. Instead, they have looked suffering and death square in the face with the same faith as saints of old. It’s quite remarkable, isn’t it, what the spread of a microscopic virus can do to alter the landscape of our world?

”We are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Jesus Christ our Lord.” — Romans 8:37-39

Jarmon L. Perkins, Princeton


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