Over the weekend, we had the privilege of attending our first political event in our new state – The Freedom Summit. The Tennessee Conservative put on a wonderfully inspiring conference. Today, I thought I’d share with you my biggest take aways from these gifted, servant hearted leaders with whom we had the opportunity to share an afternoon.

Civic Officials Have a Duty to Represent the Values of their Constituents

Robin Steenman of Moms for Liberty and Laurie Cardoza Moore of Proclaiming Justice to the Nations did a fabulous job explaining the duty of any civic leader – to represent the values of his or her constituents. Instead, parents are being kicked out of board meetings and labeled domestic terrorists. I think it’s safe to say many of our leaders need to go.

Robin bravely exposed dark curriculum being used in Williamson County Schools. Filled with suicide, murder, cannibalism, even from the youngest grades…it’s no wonder our young people struggle with depression. (Check out my post here for more on the problem of nihilism amongst our youth http://redstateramblings.com/celebrate-big-in-your-new-state/.)

You can watch Robin’s videos and download the curriculum here: https://momsforlibertywc.org/resources/wit-wisdom/. If you live in Williamson County you need to join Robin’s Moms for Liberty chapter. She has some amazing guest speakers lined up for their monthly chapter meetings, like Dr. Carol Swain and many others. If you’re interested in being a watch dog to protect kids in your area, consider starting a Moms for Liberty in your county. You can learn more here: https://www.momsforliberty.org.

Learning Ought to Lead to Action

Brandon Lewis of the The Tennessee Conservative made a convicting point. He mentioned how many in conservatism are delighted to “talk politics”, but few are willing to roll up their sleeves and actually join in the fight to defend freedom.

One of the best results of persecution is how it causes nominal Christians to lose any incentive in proclaiming Christianity. Likewise, we’ve seen how being canceled by woke corporations and media platforms has created a sifting. People who are truly conservative are content to be derided and maligned because they understand what they are fighting for. Their belief in the truth of their values has only increased as a result of the push back.

This means that right now is an exciting time to be a conservative! The silent majority hung on the bootstraps of their fathers for so long they forgot to form strong convictions. But now, we have an opportunity to know what we believe and to act out of that belief. And, make no mistake, this is indeed a time for bold action, not quite passivity.

A few loud people are intimidating the rational majority. Conservatives must choose to be unafraid.

If You Want to Help the Conservative Movement, Get to Know Your Neighbors

Tennessee’s Anchorman Alex Abernathy gave some fascinating statistics on the likelihood of a person voting conservative or liberal. In communities where people know each other, voters are far more likely to vote for conservative candidates. Conversely, if a person does not know who lives near him, he is much more likely to vote liberal. I can attest as a new citizen in the State of Tennessee having moved from California, this has proven to be true.

We can do a lot to further conservative policy in our area simply by knowing and caring for our neighbors.

The Church Plays a Part

Annie Lowery shared about her incredible church in Chattanooga. Led by a bold pastor who stood up to tyrannical government overreach during the Covid pandemic, they have been holding monthly classes with over 700 in attendance to shed light on issues the left is lying about. They’ve brought in guest speakers like Charlie Kirk and Steve Deace (using donor money of course, not money given to the church) to teach classes on things like climate change and ESG scores.

Annie shared about the influence of the Great Awakening paving the way for our emancipation from Great Britain. When Christianity is shared, freedom triumphs. When Christianity is beaten down and shoved into prisons and mocked and maligned, everyone’s freedom is at stake. Christianity is good for the world and to hold it at bay is to hold goodness, truth and beauty at bay.

Gary Humble of Tennessee Stands noted another interesting difference between freedom and tyranny. Tyranny is where the money is…if you’re a bad guy.

Conservatives are Being Silenced

It is not a conspiracy theory. Facebook is preventing people from reading conservative news. I heard it straight from the horse’s mouth on multiple occasions. As one speaker put it, if we conservatives are deemed the source of the next “public health crisis”, they have every reason to justify their decision to censor us. They did it before, they are doing it now and they will do it again.

The only way to be heard is to be free to speak and to reach an audience with a message. As Laurie Cardoza Moore mentioned, we may need to resort to snail mail.

Normal People are Needed

In California, my political involvement consisted of basically zilch and yet, I’m sure it was much more than the average Californian. In my teens, I attended the Republican National Convention. Around that same time, I was part of a youth leadership camp called City on the Hill where we debated real bills on the capital floor. Politics came to life and I realized the value in electing people who love justice and who walk humbly with their God.

Life began to move along. I got married and had children and my political interest was replaced with recipes, sleep schedules and other practical helps to raising a healthy family.

When we moved to Tennessee, I assumed my political interest would be even less than that!

But considering what we have both lost and gained as a direct result of politics, my political passion and concern have only increased. Although we are simple people leading simple lives, my biggest take away from the Summit was the fact that we are needed. Everyone from the legislators to the school board members, the journalists to the grass roots organizers, were all normal folk.

Without them pushing back against wicked policy, our country would be entirely undone. Strength lies in numbers and the fact is most people disagree with much of the insanity. Or, even if they refuse to say so, they do not live as though they agree. Many today “talk left and walk right” (a helpful phrase I recently heard, but can’t remember the source) because they’re scared.

When I think of some of my feisty friends in California who are fed up with the government and who have spent the last two years attending protests to protect their children or to defend medical freedom, I feel so proud to call them friends. I believe that is exactly the spirit Tennessee needs more of. It’s true… We don’t know what we’ve got until it’s gone.

Just Do Something

All of us need to become involved in local conservative movements. These people need our help because they are just people after all. Many of them have spent their own money creating conservative outlets. All of them have sacrificed untold amounts of time and energy to raise a respectful ruckus (in the words of Allie Beth Stuckey). We might not think we have the time, but there is always something we can do to take a little bit of the burden off of the people carrying the torch of liberty.

Laurie Cardoza Moore made an excellent point when she said “This entire room should be completely filled. There should be parents pouring into the hallways.”

She is exactly right.

If we want to stop the rot that is progressivism, we have to turn the podcast off, reach out to that small grass roots conservative organization and say, “I’m here. I care. What can I do?”

Together, we can do exactly what needs to be done.

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