Many people do not realize this, but I spent the majority of my life as a Democrat. I grew up in a small town in Rhode Island as the sixth of nine siblings. We were proud Democrats who loved America and all it stood for. Back in those days, Democrats were allowed to be pro-life and pro-law enforcement.
My heart goes out to those old-school Democrats who still love America. Many Republicans think that Democrats are all flag-burning lunatics, but I know that’s not true. I grew up with many patriotic Democrats who respected the flag and believed as strongly as any Republican in “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” My heart aches when I see how wide a gulf is fixed between the two halves of our nation.
Republicans need to stop pretending that Democrats are the enemy. Democrats need to stop pretending that Republicans are the enemy. Let us look to the words of Scripture for guidance, where we see that “we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”
If you believe that fellow Americans are the foe to be worried about, you’ve missed the point. Our enemy is Satan, the ruler of darkness. Our enemy is spiritual wickedness in high places, which flourishes when the light of public accountability is dim.
For Americans to effectively fight our true enemy, we must stand together. Petty squabbles over personality and pride have to be put away. Make no mistake, I would not call for anyone to surrender their dearly-held values in the name of unity. Rather, we must find the values that we hold in common and rally around them.
I find that the American flag and the Pledge of Allegiance are a great place to start. The American flag is not a political symbol; it is an ideological symbol. When you fly the flag, you signify your affiliation to the ideology of liberty on which our nation was founded. You believe in inalienable rights for all Americans. You believe that government should derive its power from the voice of the people. In short, you believe in the idea of America.
At the end of the day, that is what our fight is about. It’s not about homogeneity of race, class, or custom. It’s not about everyone thinking exactly the same on every issue. Rather, it’s about respecting the right of every citizen to think, act, and speak according to the dictates of their conscience. This is about America.
Whether you are as much a Democrat as my family in my youth or as much a Republican as many of my friends today, I hope you will embrace the mission of America’s Future, as I do. Together, we hold the power to secure the legacy of freedom our nation has long enjoyed.
Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn, USA (Ret.) , Chairman, America’s Future, Inc.