OPINION — I’ve long admired the yearly tradition of the late Charley Reese, a columnist for the Orlando Sentinel, who would provide his readers with an annual disclosure of who he was and where he stood.
His reasoning was that if an opinion columnist is going to write all year about the passing scene, we deserve to have a clear understanding of exactly where he or she stands.
That seems fair to me.
For better or worse, here’s who I am and where I stand.
I’m a Salt Lake City native who has spent nearly 20 years in Southern Idaho, two years in Oklahoma, 22 years in Southern Utah and now resides in Utah County.
I am registered as a Republican and have served as a delegate at the precinct, county and state level. That is about as pragmatic as I’ll get and I do so as a matter of civic duty rather than a pathway to power.
I despise partisan politics and only participate in them to the degree that I can use my personal influence to support the principles of proper limited government.
To my understanding, legitimate government is created by the governed for the express purpose of securing and protecting our natural, inherent rights. That means the rights of the individual are to be protected from the predations of the collective.
It also means that man’s laws are secondary to natural laws, which exist before and in the absence of man-made government. If an act would be considered morally reprehensible for an individual to do, it will not become a moral act when performed by government at any level.
This is why I also believe that good government is necessarily checked by a competing moral authority. Otherwise, the relativistic nature of man can justify nearly any atrocity out of “necessity.”
For this reason, I cannot support the initiation of aggressive force against another person. We have a natural right to defend our lives, property and self-determination. We have no right to use personal or collective force against peaceful individuals to bend them to our will.
The most life-changing discovery I have ever made was not that God exists but rather when I began to notice evidence of His hand in the smallest details of my own life.
This realization has added depth of purpose and a dimension of gratitude to my life that defines my priorities. It also informs and guides how I choose to use the skills and abilities I’ve spent a lifetime developing.
I make my living by providing written and spoken commentary and content for a number of podcasts, broadcasts and nonprofit organizations. I do this as a private contractor through my company With One Voice LLC.
The name of my company doesn’t refer to my own voice. It alludes to the goal of informing and inspiring others to rally “with one voice” around the time-tested ideas and principles that lift and bless mankind.
Though it’s often an uphill battle, to put it mildly, it’s humbling to help repay the debt I owe to those who paved the way before me.
Somewhere, back in my 40s, I likely crossed the statistical “hump day” of my life expectancy and the years ahead of me became shorter than the years behind me. Since that time, I’ve made time to conduct a yearly personal accounting of sorts.
More than compiling a tally sheet of accomplishments and acquirements, I try instead to ascertain my current position as well as where my life’s trajectory is leading me.
My goal is not to keep up with the Joneses.
It is to use whatever time and influence I may have as wisely as possible. Impact and purpose matter more than fleeting conditions like fame or fortune.
That is who I am and where I stand.
On a completely unrelated note, today marks the realization of a long-term dream to be able to speak the truth from a national media platform.
The Loving Liberty Radio Network officially launches today and represents a needed alternative for the truth-seekers who are experiencing a crisis of credibility in much of our mass media. These are the people who recognize the priceless value of individual liberty, freedom of conscience, private property rights and the principles that make them possible.
In today’s over-politicized climate, too much of the crucial information about the world around us is tainted by red team vs. blue team melodrama. The Loving Liberty Radio Network brings together a diverse team of national hosts who fluently speak the language of liberty without bogging down in partisan outrage.
The free streaming app is available on Google Play as well as through the iTunes App Store.
Time alone will tell if it is a success or not. Either way, it has been a privilege to help with building this platform.
Bryan Hyde is an opinion columnist specializing in current events and liberty viewed through what he calls the lens of common sense. The opinions stated in this article are his own and may not be representative of St. George News.
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