For the record, here’s Merriam- Webster’s definition of “conviction” (not the legal kind):
: a strong belief or opinion
: the feeling of being sure that what you believe or say is true
Harkening back to and continuing from our last brilliant post on the topic, kindly note that when asked or expected to ditch conviction for convenience, you’re essentially being asked to either embrace what you’re at odds with or consider false. The convoluted reasoning usually runs something like. Dump your convictions and cave so I/we/he/she/they/us (fill in the blank) can all sit around the campfire, hold hands and sing Kum-Ba-Yah.
If that little jingle doesn’t resonate, wait for the next refrain: Petty. Unreasonable. Quixotic. Note that “minor details” such as truth, honor, integrity, accountability and character aren’t part of the tune. That way we can play ostrich. Ignore the issue. Change horses. Attack you instead of the problem, issue or concern that resulted in your disapproval.
This is par for the course in DemoLib circles. But Republicans should know better. Should, I said, not do. Because in some so-called R circles, comfy trumps integrity, honor and pretty much everything that separates red from blue.
Another fascinating facet: Why are those pointing out the problem the issue, rather than the one or ones who created it? Why are the former expected to change, shift, or halt their “disapproval” instead of the latter ceasing the offending behavior that started the ball rolling in the first place? And why does “Be reasonable” always translate: Sit down and shut up?
Additionally, expecting/demanding that one deny his or her beliefs and cave for the sake of political convenience is a classic empty suit feint. It does not address the problem, nor does it solve anything other than make the other person feel better, assumedly so you can become a principle-less empty suit, too!
Again, we expect this from DemoLibs. They don’t know any better. But have you noticed? The red side of the aisle is pretty good at singing the Empty Suit Blues, too. Oh, joy.
Newsflash: Seeking to influence a runner, candidate, elected office holder or anyone else to deny his/her beliefs, compromise their core convictions and values and dump their principles so you can play sans same means demanding that said pesky person become someone s/he’s not. It’s insisting on a silver-for-sand swap. Switching out backbone for a wet noodle. Conscience for convenience. It’s the equivalent of expecting someone else to commit moral hari-kari so you don’t have to.
It’s Gutless Wuss 101.
As for the li’l sweethearts who maintain, straight-faced, that standing on principle can only “hurt your cause and diminish your influence,” what planet did you fly in from? This is usually meant as a threat, like the two year-old who’s going to “punish” Mommy and Daddy by pitching a fit that gets said sweetie sent to their room without dinner. It’s also one reason why some Conservs have lost faith in the GOP.
Reality check: You don’t have to go much further than Genesis to realize that those who stand on principle almost always stand alone, and could give two figs what a principle-impaired lemming stampede says or thinks. William Wilberforce, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Margaret Thatcher, Ronald Reagan and Winston Churchill weren’t competing for Mr. or Ms. Congeniality awards. Truth, integrity, and moral courage were a little higher on their list. How likely are those those who can’t or won’t wrap their heads around that concept able to grasp that there’s no such thing as “winning” if every last shred of honor, integrity and credibility is lost in the process? So you post some points. But on a scoreboard firmly anchored in Jell-o? Big wow.
Duke of Sutherland: A sticky moment, George.
Lord Birkenhead: Thank God for Lindsay. I thought the lad had us beaten.
Duke of Sutherland: He did have us beaten, and thank God he did.
Lord Birkenhead: I don’t quite follow you.
Duke of Sutherland: The lad, as you call him, is a true man of principles and a true athlete. His speed is a mere extension of his life, its force. We sought to sever his running from himself.
Lord Birkenhead: For his country’s sake, yes.
Duke of Sutherland: No sake is worth that, least of all a guilty national pride.
If those who seek to separate one from his/her beliefs and integrity in the athletic or political realm or any other succeed, then the principled runner, candidate or office holder becomes an empty suit, bereft of the will, the force and the honor that propels him to “break the tape” in the first place. When that happens, all that’s left are wet noodles jockeying for another round of Kum-Ba-Yah. And more Jell-0.
Eric Liddell had it right. “All that glitters is not gold,” but honor is everything. Without it, nothing else matters.