Tonight we are gathered here for something that, in a rational world, wouldn’t be very important—politics. Why do I say it is really not all that important?
If I were to ask you to sit down and write down the five most important things in your life, I can assure you that politics would not be one of them. What really is important?
Perhaps it’s a walk on the beach with the person you love most in this world; or a son’s graduation, the birth of a grandchild, the joy of wonderful music, the discovery of new places, the quest for knowledge, finding a flower that you have never seen before, the satisfaction of productive work, or the thrill of scientific discovery.
The lists we would make would vary from person to person. But I think I’m on safe ground when I say that none of us would list a political campaign.
Most people instinctively dislike politics—and probably with good reason. What we see when look at it is back room deals, low ethics, big promises but poor delivery, lies, lies, lies and then to cover them up, usually more lies. The quality of people attracted to such ventures is not very high. There seems to be a direct inverse relationship between electability and decency.
When we think about those things in our lives that are important we realize that there is one crucial ingredient that makes all of them possible. It doesn’t matter what you value because the inescapable nature of man is such that liberty is absolutely necessary.