I was 4 years old when the Libertarian Party became official. Needless to say, I wasn’t attending that Colorado Springs meeting where it all began. None of that changes the fact that I believe in this party and am committed to promoting it as I promote the general cause of liberty. I believe the LP is the best vehicle available for bringing freedom to this nation in our lifetime.
There are many who are curious as to what makes us different. Are we just a 3rd corrupted option working to be the lesser of 3 evils? Why do we claim to be unique? What do we have to offer the public that they haven’t seen from other political organizations?
I think one of the most significant differences is our consistency and our adherence to the principles that guide us. Do individuals within the party stray? Sure! Do we have to guard against an influx of people who do not align with our ideals and wish to use our organization for their own selfish gain? Absolutely! But the corporate “we” have remained steadfast in the face of adversity and changing tides of public opinion for the duration of our existence.
On the whole, Democrats were against gay marriage before they favored it. Likewise, we still see politicians who ’embrace voting blue’ sending mixed messages about legalization of marijuana even with an overwhelming majority of the people saying it should be legal and it being easily passed in various states, like our own. These are things we, as a party, stood for since the beginning.
And let us not forget that the D’s of today look nothing like the party leaders of old. The party has been tossed to and fro, always trying to conform to what they think will win them votes and now cannot be recognized as the party of JFK.
Republicans talk a big talk when it comes to fiscal responsibility but when they take office, they drive up the debt and raise taxes just as fiercely as their counterpart. The Libertarian Party has always been consistent in our stance against taxation and spending. If you cannot fund it without increasing the debt or dropping an ever-increasing tax burden on the American people, then it is not on the agenda. Simple as that. We are solid in our message that government is too big, spends too much, and constantly gets in the way of individual choice. The GOP presents a similar message but delivers something quite different, on a regular basis.
We are the Party of Principle! Sometimes, that hurts us. When you hold to a set of principles even when public opinion is shifting towards an ever-growing, intrusive state, it costs you votes and support. But in the end, we stand steadfast and we have to believe that this steadfastness is what will draw more uncompromising individuals, like ourselves, to our cause and eventually help us compete, at every level of public office.
As we celebrate the milestone of 50 years, as a political party in America, we must acknowledge the realization that we are not where we could be but we are also not where we started. We continue to be the only growing political party in this nation and we are a consistent voice for the individual, a voice of compassion and of peace.