This week, I got my ballot for the upcoming election. I’ve been a Republican my whole millennial life. If you haven’t noticed, the party is changing. Good or bad, change is inevitable. Parties are not immutable. They are dynamic, iterative and evolve in response to generational change, shifting economics and cultural variation over time.

Despite the blindingly caustic campaign discourse, before the election is the time to discuss not just wonkery or platforms, but principles. Mine are drawn from perspective as a father and husband and yes, lifelong Republican. Nobody has all the answers, but I hope to contribute to an ongoing conversation about the party’s future.

Some might call this virtue signaling, but the stars guide us when at sea. There is value in stating virtue. So I propose the following pillars of a New Republicanism for Frederick County that champions the humanity of our community, includes all members and appeals to our peoples’ better angels. Through this, we can commit to the same principles presented by George Washington as he paraphrased Micah 4:4, “...every one shall sit in safety under his own vine and fig tree and there shall be none to make him afraid.”

Pillar One: Strengthen the communityRepublicanism ought to focus on localism where folks commune in healthy and vibrant neighborhoods. We must carve out spaces for associational life by supporting faith-based institutions, civil society and business to prosper and respond to emergent needs in society. Helping community groups grow is crucial when loneliness and atomization are so high. Empathy and compassion have to be part of a lexicon that humanizes all life.

Above all, New Republicanism should be family first. This includes increasing the affordability of having a family, advancing a modern approach to child care and improving student education. As citizens, we too have the responsibility to prioritize family and community.

Further, we should embrace diversity in our community. There is real marginalization in society. Social stress impacts community members differently, but marginalization is complex and cannot be reduced to one theory. Unfortunately, pain is prolific and diverse, and so compassion must be equitably abundant. Life should be not just tolerated, but appreciated and every citizen should feel welcome in our community with equal access to opportunities and justice regardless of gender, race, class, ethnicity, belief, sexual orientation or politics.

As a Black man, I can attest that society has issues with individual bigotry and institutional marginalization. This isn’t privilege shaming, but it is about expanding privileges and affirming rights and civil liberties. Between extremes, there can be a moment for progress in our community. It’s complex, but a truth redounds: Justice and law and order must be in equitable harmony, otherwise we have neither.

Pillar Two: Equal opportunityThe party should remain pro-business. Free market solutions are a part of an organic approach to addressing community problems. Businesses bring jobs, resources and support needed to help families and facilitate associational life.

But we can also think about the intended result: accessible opportunity. A strong opportunity climate means that innovators innovate, small businesses grow, competition multiplies and that we ensure that citizens have access to dignified work for diverse skill sets.

Pillar Three: Smart governanceI’ve always been a small government conservative, largely due to a general skepticism for big organizations: big government, big business, big union and big etc. That needs to remain a part of Republicanism going forward. However, effective small government is a tool that can be used incisively when it is adaptive, reliable, responsive and data-based.

This means that governing organizations must practice responsible fiscal management with clear objectives (aware of demands in the community, economy and environment) that can be understood and observed by all citizens.

Good governance in a New Republicanism means that officials and citizens act according to (small “r”) republican virtues. If there is a decent deficit in our politics, it can be rectified. Our officials need to be civil, responsive, open and transparent. Citizens can demand that. Republican principles require a fruitful relationship of responsibility between the governed and those governing.

To prepare our community to pass on something of value to our children, all hands have to be onboard. We benefit from the vibrant exchange of ideas. We cannot cede policy or communities to other parties like they are fiefdoms in a modern duopoly. It is our responsibility in Frederick to meet the new demands burdening our community with a human-centered vision to provide a better and more enriching tomorrow for the next generation.

Dylan Diggs is the vice president of the Republican Club of Frederick County.

(35) comments

public-redux

“Above all, New Republicanism should be family first.”

I hope the New Republicanism has a more inclusive definition of “family” than does the current version of the party.

Dwasserba

We got our ballots when our neighbor brought them because they went to her house.

Greg F

Thanks DeJoy...and trump.

FrederickFan

The Republican party has priorities that don't square with this letter. The Republican party has become judgemental and totally lacking in empathy. They are led by fear of other people - immigrants and people of color. Their leader will not denounce white supremacy and has called covid a hoax until he got it himself. A destroyed economy has been left in the wake. There is no way to put lip stick on this Republican party.

MD1756

I have a hard time reconciling this LTE writer's positions with what governments should actually do. For example:

In pillar one he states " We must carve out spaces for associational life by supporting faith-based institutions..." How does that quare with the concept of separation of church and state?

In pillar two he states "The party should remain pro-business." What happens when the business is at odds with the health and welfare of the surrounding community? Jjust look at almost any petroleum refinery, chemical plant, power plant, etc. Some earn huge profits while polluting the environment and killing at least some of their neighbors because they are not controlling their pollution to the point where it does not harm their neighbors. Is that what government should support? I guess the writer is too young to remember when we had rivers that would burn.

In pillar three the LTE writer states "Smart governanceI’ve always been a small government conservative, largely due to a general skepticism for big organizations: big government, big business, big union and big etc." Well' I don't think anyone would argue for dumb governance, but what is smart governance is up for debate. I also have a hard time reconciliating small as almost always being better. He the writer not heard of the concept of economies of scale. By promoting small business over any other size business the LTE writer is potentially promoting inefficiencies and thus increasing costs and wasting resources.

The LTE writer does have one good concept. That is "governing organizations must practice responsible fiscal management with clear objectives (aware of demands in the community, economy and environment) that can be understood and observed by all citizens."

DickD

Good analysis, MD.

awteam2000

The author of the “letter to the editor” is Dylan Diggs, the vice president of the Republican Club of Frederick County. Not the VP of Trumpism in Frederick.

MD1756

Just curious, how is your reply relevant to my comment? My comment was not about Trump or really even republicans but about the LTE's concepts of what government should do.

threecents

Quite to the contrary, I don't see the Republican party changing. It is still the party of Trump, and Trump is definitely not about inclusion or free self expression. If the party was changing then those challenging Trump would have had some success in the primaries. They had zero success.

C.D.Reid

The Republican party is still the party of Trump? I hate to tell you, but the Republican Party was around long before Trump was ever born and it'll be around long after he's gone. If anything, it's the party of Lincoln, the first Republican to run for the presidency.

DickD

Lincoln was no coservative. He was liberal and was elected by northern states. The South was mostly Democrat back then. After 1965 and allowing Blacks to live where they want and desegregation of public schools all of that changed.

phydeaux994

Today’s Republican Party is not like any Republican Party that ever existed, even worse than Newt Gingrich’s “Contract ON America” version. The REAL Republican Party ceased in 1994 when Newt started the move to the FAR, FAR, FAR, RIGHT a.k.a. the RRR(RadicalRightRepublican)/Trump Party. This Trump Party is composed of spineless wimps, liars and Conspiracy Theory believers. We should have been rid of Donald John Trump on February 5, 2020 but for the Cowardly, Mitch McConnell led Republican Senate who Pardoned him for his crimes against America. We wouldn’t be in this horrible quagmire of corruption and malfeasance if they had been Patriots.

Dwasserba

Lincoln wouldn't recognize it.

threecents

Thanks to CD and Phy for correcting me: "Today's" Republican Party is still the party of Trump and McConnell, and it bears no resemblance to the Republican Party of Lincoln.

Greg F

💿, your party has been hijacked by oligarchs who are in deep with Russia and those who feign religious devotion to hornswaggle you into voting against your better interests, as well as the overwhelming interest of the nation and it’s people. Dangle a Jesus emblem over it and you’ll swallow about any tall tale and policy. Waive confederate and Nazi flags...you won’t say a word. Mention NRA and you’ll do about anything your masters want, even if it takes every last penny out of your pocket to give to other wealthy folks.

DickD

Some lofty goals, Dylan. It is okay to have them, but how do you achieve them? Look at the POTUS signs around Frederick County. Go to Wolfsville and all you see are Trump /Pence signs. Go to Frederick City or Middletown the signsare mostlyBiden /Harris. Frederick City has been mostly Democrat, but Middletown was mostly Republican. What happened? Trump tapped into a divisive strategy that bought him the election in 2016. That was then, now that strategy isn't working. How do you change the Trump cult strategy, which is not what you are aiming at in your presentation?

Fleawest

These pillars are things we all want; strong community, equal opportunity, and smart governance. It's really sad that the media has painted the left and right in such a bad light, only focusing on the extreme platform positions and opinions. There is a huge middle ground and the author of this article just laid it all out. I'm a registered Democrat but like most people, I don't fully support what the party is trying to do. There are some great ideas put forth by Republicans. The key to getting the best of both worlds is to compromise which unfortunately has been demonized in politics. We can change that on the local level.

public-redux

It would be helpful if Mr. Diggs identified the current leaders of FredCo’s Republican party that are standing in the way of this New Republicanism.

PurplePickles aka L&M

@Public-redux

That is an excellent point, because it would seem this letter was directed more at them than the general public.

yogib

While I appreciate Mr. Diggs efforts, he still outlines ways that the "new" Republican party really looks like the old one. e.g. he does not discard the "money elitisms" which are destroying the old Republicans. The idea that only the Democrats give money away has long been discarded as the Republicans show their corruptness in their relationships with the working classes, racism, the environment and political power i.e. huge tax cuts, corporate subsidies, and military support of resource stripping and facism. Nice try Mr. Diggs but until the party values change, we will never have again a significant Republican party in a free America.

Reader1954

republicans expect to work for a living. Democrats think the government owes them a living

Fleawest

I'm surprised that you would post such an idiotic comment after such a poignant article supporting what is in essence the middle ground between the left and right to which the majority of America can subscribe. You sir are the problem and not part of the solution.

threecents

If you respect the idea of working for what you get, then why do you support Trump? That is exactly the opposite of Trump.

phydeaux994

You need some new material Reader. That’s the dumbest one of the Republican stereotypes. Vote for Biden and America not for Trump and Dictatorship.

Hayduke2

Reader, what a nonsense post and so out of touch with reality. Take a look at data about which states "take" from the federal and state governments.

MD1756

Reader1954, you write "republicans expect to work for a living. Democrats think the government owes them a living" How does that stand with the LTE's statement "Above all, New Republicanism should be family first. This includes increasing the affordability of having a family, advancing a modern approach to child care and improving student education. As citizens, we too have the responsibility to prioritize family and community."

Does it need to be more affordable or should people work art jobs that allow them to easily afford children? With the growing human population and all the problems associated with it, we shouldn't be making it easier for people to have children.

DickD

And all this time I have worked and been a Democrat. Reader, why didn't you tell me sooner, so I could have just gone fishing?

Dwasserba

Independents ask, "Generalize much?"

Greg F

You’ve swallowed the lies fully, that much is obvious. You realize red states by far have the most welfare recipients....surely...well...of course not.

gary4books

This can be a good way for local Republicans to move into the future. I am happy to see the work in progress.

Comment deleted.
C.D.Reid

Why? Because you don't agree with his opinion he's a moron? I don't agree with yours, would you like me to tell you what you are, franklin3?

phydeaux994

CD, anyone who makes a moronic statement that is obviously a lie, not an opinion, can be considered a moron. And you tell everybody that doesn’t agree with you what they are anyway. What made you such an angry man?

C.D.Reid

"Anyone who makes a moronic statement that is obviously a lie, not an opinion, can be considered a moron." Is that one of your rules, fido? Like how many comments I can post a day, and when I can start posting them and when I have to stop? And just where did you see anger in my reply to franklin3, fido? I can't ask someone a question without you putting your worthless two cents in?

bosco

CD.....[lol][lol][lol][lol][thumbup][thumbup][ninja]

phydeaux994

Who’s making the rules now CD?? Before you post anything you should ask yourself “do I do this to other commenters”? The answer is always “yes I do”!! Now if you can’t show me where I have ever limited or constrained anything you do on this Forum I will have to call you a LIAR, not that you haven’t always been. BTW CD, why are you such an angry man??? Hi bosco👋🏼where you been?😷

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it clean. No vulgar, racist, sexist or sexually-oriented language.
Engage ideas. This forum is for the exchange of ideas, not personal attacks or ad hominem criticisms.
TURN OFF CAPS LOCK.
Be civil. Don't threaten. Don't lie. Don't bait. Don't degrade others.
No trolling. Stay on topic.
No spamming. This is not the place to sell miracle cures.
No deceptive names. Apparently misleading usernames are not allowed.
Say it once. No repetitive posts, please.
Help us. Use the 'Report' link for abusive posts.

Thank you for reading!

Already a member?

Login Now
Click Here!

Currently a News-Post subscriber?

Activate your membership at no additional charge.
Click Here!

Need more information?

Learn about the benefits of membership.
Click Here!

Ready to join?

Choose the membership plan that fits your needs.
Click Here!