“Freedom is a fragile thing and it’s never more than one generation away from extinction.”
Mike Pence kicked off his energizing talk Tuesday night with a quote from Ronald Reagan, his political idol growing up, upon whose Bible he swore while assuming the office of Vice President of the United States. A quote from 55 years ago still rings true today. The woke left, as Pence went on to proclaim, is trying to take away the fundamental right to free speech; any voice that is not their own is “dangerous” and every opinion that isn’t theirs should be quelled.
But Pence has hope; Pence has been touring the country as a part of his YAF tour, and when he looks into the eyes of young conservatives, he sees hope. Tuesday night was no exception. Over 800 UVA students and benefactors poured into Old Cabell Hall to listen on the edge of their seats to the 48th Vice President of the United States, and his message was clear: there is hope that we are the freedom generation. But it’s on us; we have to act on it, we cannot stand idly by, we cannot continue to comply.
Pence would go on to give somewhat of a “State of the Union.” In 15 months, what the Biden-Harris administration has accomplished (or un-accomplished?) is really something. The previous four years, the median household income was the highest it had ever been, along with some of the lowest income taxes. Public education had received the most funding in years. And with Operation Warp Speed, the United States had launched the largest crisis mobilization since World War II.
But here we are now. Since January 2021, gas prices have risen over 70%– in California, some can be found up to $6.50 per gallon. The border is a mess– to quote Pence, “a nation without borders isn’t a nation,” and this nation’s borders are certainly struggling. The United States is a weak foreign state. Tensions with North Korea and China are at an all-time high, and more significantly, the United States is just not as respected as it used to be by foreign leaders. This is added onto the Russia-Ukraine conflict. “I stood toe to toe with Putin and told him things he didn’t want to hear,” Pence told us. Regardless of your opinions on the previous administration, Putin would never have even thought to invade Ukraine while Trump and Pence occupied the White House. Lastly, the United States education system is falling to shambles. Kids are being indoctrinated from a young age with critical race theory, a practice that “teaches children to hate themselves just because of the color of their skin,” remarked Pence.
But despite all of this, there is hope, and it starts here in Virginia. Just last fall we elected Glenn Youngkin in a historically blue state in response to the left’s hateful policies like critical race theory. These are policies that are so far left that, “the left…sometimes doesn’t know what the far-left is doing,” a comment from Pence that received laughter from the crowd. They’re so concerned about the other party that they can’t even keep their own together. “For years the left wanted to fight the culture war. Well now they’ve got it, and it looks like they’re losing,” said Pence, another comment that lit a spark among the crowd. They tried to cancel us, silence our voices, remove our tweets, flag us for misinformation. It didn’t work, and enough people are catching on that it’s no longer a silent majority, it’s a vocal majority. But, if we are the freedom generation that Pence believes us to be, we cannot give up. Stand up to the woke left, stand up for free speech.
So the next time anyone asks you if you’re free this weekend, look them in the eye and then into the distance, shed a tear and hear a bald eagle screech as you say, “I’m free every weekend.”
The opinions expressed within this piece represent the views of the author alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Jefferson Independent.