The oft-repeated expression “the most important election of our lifetime” might sound hyperbolic. But it can’t be understated what an impact the policy response during the pandemic has had on people’s lives. So let us examine what is at stake this November.
Over the last two and a half years the Democrats have emerged as the pro-lockdown and pro-mandate party. Just how wrong did they get it? Consider both the devastating immediate economic effects to small business owners and their employees, and the longer-term ripple effects and precedents that have been set. While some of the policy makers may have considered this a necessary trade off at the time, multiple studies have shown that the lockdowns did nothing to curb the spread of Covid.
This preceded the firing and coercion of thousands of healthcare workers, military servicemen and women, and other employees, merely for having apprehension about taking a novel mRNA-based injection for the “common good” (which proved to be a falsehood, since mass vaccination during the pandemic also did nothing to curb spread).
Never mind some of the adverse effects of the jab itself, which have been widely reported to the government’s VAERS database but have been mostly ignored by our captured media. As Congressman Thomas Massie (R-KY) recently tweeted, “Any medical treatment, for which DEATH or DISABILITY is a possible side effect, must be an informed CHOICE free of coercion. I can’t believe we’re even arguing this in this century.”
And yet, Democrats supported these policies across the board. To an extent there was lackluster resistance from many Republicans as well. But a few, like Senator Doug Mastriano, did clearly fight for us (look up PA Senate bills SB1103, SB1141, and SB1191 from 2020, or SB 471 and SB1004 from 2021, for a sampling). And that’s one of the biggest reasons I am door-knocking and voting for him.
We must not fall victim to short term memory. Though mandates have eased in PA, and lockdowns seem to be behind us, Covid-era policies are still in place around the country, with new ones still emerging. In California, a bill (AB 2098) was recently passed that targets doctors who spread “misinformation” or “disinformation” related to Covid-19, which can result in their suspension of license or other discipline.
This bill is indicative of the censorship and attacks on free speech that have pervaded in recent years, and doctors everywhere are taking notice. According to Virginia-based pediatrician Dr. Liz Mumper, “Scientific truth evolves over time — what is labeled as today’s misinformation may be tomorrow’s ingenious breakthrough.” Renowned cardiologist Dr. Peter McCullough adds, “This new law hurts the most vulnerable at a time when they need their physicians to be honest and forthright. California is on a slippery slope of medical totalitarianism.”
We must never let Pennsylvania quietly fall down that slope towards becoming California. Yet here we are, on the precipice of another Democratic governorship and a possible U.S. Senate flip, if the polls are to be believed.
How is this happening? The Democrats have been cleverly diverting attention away from the pandemic response and towards just about any other issue. Some topics have been traditional points of contention. Progressives are quick to point out the sins of the fossil fuel industry, but seem to be completely okay now with the influence of Big Pharma, which donates twice as much money to Congress. Abortion has been rekindled as a rallying cry to vote blue. And where politicians stand on both January 6 and the validity of the 2020 Presidential election have become new litmus tests.
The Democrats would rather have you talk about President Trump than actual issues. Instead of discussing candidate platforms, their media allies would rather have you hear about which outlier Republicans are voting against party lines on the Governorship (a technique meant to create a false bandwagon effect, and the same playbook they used on Trump in 2016).
Moreover, the term “extremist” has been thrown around to new levels this election season. It is a rhetorical device that aims to move the goalposts of the Overton window of acceptable dialog on these issues. And it relies on the calculus that voters will make decisions purely on a surface level, which reveals the low regard in which party establishments actually hold the voting populace. Democrats would rather fearmonger about the banning of D&C’s and treatment of ectopic pregnancies, than admit Mastriano’s actual platform wouldn’t prevent these life-saving procedures. In my State House district 96, April Weaver, who has gone out of her way to campaign as a moderate, is also being attacked for her private pro-life views…views that aren’t even listed on her campaign website. They would rather not talk about her strong bipartisan central plank of mental health care reform – her area of expertise as a social worker, and an area that has needed yet more mitigation since the harmful lockdowns.
Imagine being called an “extremist”, merely for expressing that you are pro-life (as if there is anything extreme about wanting to protect the unborn). Imagine being called a “traitor”, merely for being passionate about electoral integrity and calling for investigations. The danger isn’t just in the normalization of such rhetoric, it is in the normalization of actual government aggression against its own citizens. Examples of this can be seen through the recent raiding of pro-life advocates’ homes (e.g. Mark Houck, Chet Gallagher) by the Democrat-captured FBI, or by the indefinite holding of protesters from the January 6 rally as political prisoners.
Congress is also currently considering several bills, such as H.R. 6448 and S. 3860, that could result in the co-opting and federalizing of our local police forces. These bills, by extending federal funding to local law enforcement, would behold them to follow unconstitutional federal standards. The government’s heavy-handed response to the pandemic has helped pave the way for these types of intrusions.
I don’t presume that adopting a purely partisan stance will fix things. The Lancaster Patriot editor Chris Hume recently wrote, “the Republican Party is not part of the solution—it’s part of the problem.” I would agree, in part. Not every candidate on the Republican ticket is as strong as Mastriano or Weaver. Wouldn’t it be great if political parties didn’t exist at all, and everyone could judge candidates objectively based solely on their actual substance?
I believe the problems often happen when politicians, who are already stretched thin across many different issues, end up balancing a surface level grasp of a specific issue, with their own careerism. Many politicians might base their decision, either consciously or sub-consciously, on which way the political winds are blowing and what is safe, and thus may never dig deep enough to strengthen their own convictions. When self-preservation is paramount, there is less incentive to be cognizant of power structures, to seek news from alternative sources, and to come to one’s own conclusions based on rigorous cause and effect analysis.
And this is what makes it so difficult to get to the whole truth about things like the integrity of our elections, the true prominence of vaccine injury, and the circumstances that supposedly justify our involvement in military conflict and foreign wars.
I submit that this and every election should be a referendum on political careerism and the practice of surface-level voting and legislation. It should be a referendum on regulatory capture, government overreach, and the legacy media outlets that brazenly support political parties and cover for the government’s and its lobbying influencers’ misdeeds.
This November, please vote with the worst of pandemic-era policies in mind. We must all vote as if we are all still being locked down, and our private businesses being forced to close. We must vote with the image of masks on our kids in school all day, with no end in sight. We must vote as if we’re all still being mandated new shots with unproven safety records, under penalty of job loss. Whether or not any of these policies affect you personally now, you never know when they might be instituted again, and what precedents they may yet set.
Voting is not a magical panacea, but an incremental step. But there has been such an incremental backslide into tyranny and totalitarianism over the last few years, that I believe the best way to combat it at this point in Pennsylvania’s trajectory is via a red wave. I say this as a career independent voter, who only recently re-registered as Republican.
If you do not believe, as I do, that the Republican Party is currently the best vehicle of change, please at least do what you can to invest in America’s long game. This starts by getting educated on issues, digging below the surface, and recognizing propaganda and the power structures behind it. Please call your Senators to vote against bills like H.R. 6448. Be vigilant that a bill like California’s AB 2098 never gets introduced here, and vote against the kind of politicians that would sponsor one. Every little incremental step helps.
Daniel Martin is an IT Specialist, musician, and freelance writer living in Manheim Township. His articles have appeared in The American Conservative, The Libertarian Institute, Catholic Digest, Counterpunch, and elsewhere. In May 2022, he was elected to the Manheim Township Republican Committee.