I believe all things happen for a purpose. As I walked toward my polling place on Super Tuesday, I was approached (outside and at a legal distance) by a man, who asked for my support. I had been vaguely familiar with the name and already had plans to vote for him. He was Ohio state senate candidate Paul Isaacs.
I thanked him for being out there and continued on to go exercise my constitutional right. As I was leaving, I felt compelled to ask him for information about his campaign and some of his beliefs. The conversation was continually interrupted as he would greet every voter walking towards the polling center; but through the half-sentences and pauses, I came to know a man who put his convictions and faith above other people’s opinions and the odds. This most obviously demonstrated by the fact that he was asked to run and start a campaign two months before. As we spoke, I came to learn that Mr. Isaacs’ main reason for running was the lack of interest in the Heartbeat Bill that the current District 06 state senator has shown over the last year. I listened to his abbreviated campaign story and saw conviction and passion that one rarely sees expressed in an individual. I stayed that afternoon helping Mr. Isaacs hand out literature and asking voters to support him. Between the requests, we spoke about our politics, convictions, and our faith in the Lord. Before I knew it, the sun had gown down and the polls were about to close. Mr. Isaacs had left a few minutes before to wrap up some loose ends before the results were announced. Standing there alone in the dark, I found myself campaigning for someone who I’d just met.
Mr. Isaacs lost the election. His two month old campaign garnered a little bit over 31% of the vote from OH -District 06 voters. For a campaign born not more than two months before Super Tuesday, that is nothing short of incredible, but that’s not the point. Although we only spent three hours together, I could tell the drive Mr. Isaacs has for his beliefs cannot be stamped out by the loss of an election. The revelation I experienced that evening was that I have a duty to be active for my beliefs or I need to sit down and be silent. The middle ground is the easy place to be; in fact, it may be the easiest position. What could be easier than being silent when dissidents are present and expressing “convictions” when in friendly circles? Nothing could be simpler than to blend in with your surroundings, avoiding confrontation with the people around you.
I cannot call myself a conservative, if I am not willing to speak it. The biggest spark to this realization was a comment that Mr. Isaacs made to me that evening. In a discussion around religious beliefs, he said he did not believe that people will die for something they don’t genuinely believe in. I realized that this is a level of conviction that one must have if they truly believe in something, and it’s time to apply this all areas of life. Young and old conservatives must live by this; or we must fade away, taking our beliefs with us. There isn’t really any middle ground anymore; perhaps there never really was.