I have discussed this elsewhere, and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich has made the same point over here at Fox News.
It was October 27, 1964. Ronald Reagan, then an actor and private citizen, had been asked to give a nationally televised addressed for the Republican presidential nominee, Arizona Sen. Barry Goldwater. Reagan did so, the title of his speech being “A Time for Choosing.”
In his speech Reagan said the following:
This is the issue of this election: Whether we believe in our capacity for self-government or whether we abandon the American revolution and confess that a little intellectual elite in a far-distant capitol can plan our lives for us better than we can plan them ourselves.
You and I are told increasingly we have to choose between a left or right. Well I’d like to suggest there is no such thing as a left or right. There’s only an up or down — [up to] man’s old-aged dream, the ultimate in individual freedom consistent with law and order, or down to the ant heap of totalitarianism. And regardless of their sincerity, their humanitarian motives, those who would trade our freedom for security have embarked on this downward course.
Reagan was right. And that speech skyrocketed him two years later into the governorship of California and, in 1980 and 1984, to two landslide presidential victories. And in those eight years Reagan was relentless in driving home that message of freedom as he, against all odds and a chorus of naysayers, won the Cold War by defeating the “Evil Empire” (as he correctly called it) of the Communist Soviet Union. The latter eventually collapsing onto, again as Reagan said, “the ash heap of history.”
As America stands on the threshold of the 2020 election, Reagan’s “Time for Choosing” speech is precisely relevant today. The principles and concerns he expressed are in fact at the very core of what can easily be termed the Trump Revolution.
Make no mistake.
Taken together it is disturbingly — some would say frighteningly — clear that this collectively is exactly what Reagan was warning about a full 56 years ago when he warned that the time for choosing came down to choosing between the “ultimate in individual freedom consistent with law and order” or “the ant heap of totalitarianism.”
One doesn’t have to be the proverbial rocket scientist to see that as Americans prepare to vote, one side in this debate is openly defending media censorship, the raw power of unelected bureaucrats, the outright violence of looting and burning cities, and, spectacularly dangerously, the raw power of Silicon Valley to control what Americans can and cannot say or see on the all-powerful social media platforms of the 21st century.
As Speaker Newt Gingrich says: “In short, what we’re witnessing is an undermining of the United States of America.”
On Saturday night, I was in Montoursville, Pennsylvania, to take in my third Trump rally of the fall campaign. There were thousands and thousands (and thousands!) of Pennsylvanians there. And in talking to them it is crystal clear that they vividly understand what is at stake in this election. That understanding is exactly why they have swarmed to Donald Trump, spontaneously breaking out into chants of “We love you!” and “USA! USA!” They understand all too well that they — and their freedom — are the targets of the American Left. They understand the Left’s all-too-visible intentions of remaking America as an authoritarian state by, among other things, packing the Supreme Court, packing the U.S. Senate, and abolishing the Electoral College to ensure that the voices of dissent are in a permanent minority. As a friend observed taking in the crowd of thousands, this isn’t a “movement” — it’s a revolution. The Trump Revolution.
Ronald Reagan closed out his “Time for Choosing” speech this way:
You and I have a rendezvous with destiny.
We’ll preserve for our children this, the last best hope of man on earth, or we’ll sentence them to take the last step into a thousand years of darkness.
Now, 56 years later, that is exactly the point of the Trump Revolution. It is a 21st-century rendezvous with destiny. A rendezvous to “preserve for our children this, the last best hope of man on earth, or we’ll sentence them to take the last step into a thousand years of darkness.”
Yet again, America faces a Time for Choosing.