Profiles in courage in Georgia

Nick R. Brown Contributor
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I was recently speaking with one of my teachers from high school, reflecting on her summer reading assignment, JFK’s Profiles in Courage.  If you have never read the book, it can be summarized quite simply in that it follows the actions of statesmen throughout the history of our country that took serious resolve and unwavering confidence.  That’s not to say that these individuals who were profiled did not face fear in their hearts, fear for their jobs, and possibly fear for their lives.  Fear is an emotion and it is understandable to have felt such emotion when placed in the situations that these men were embroiled.

Emotions, however, are not actions and actions are not words.  Words are funny things.  They form sentences and go on to form speeches.  Speeches stir emotions and cause people to talk about issues.  Sometimes this causes people to become involved and take action, which is good.  However the difference between words and actions is that a word may or may not cause an action, while an action will always be the process of doing.  And the men of Kennedy’s most renowned work were doers.

In February of this year, my Congressman, John Linder, announced his retirement from public office.  I’ve always liked Mr. Linder even though I was turned down for a position at his state office when I was 20 and looking for work while in college.  It has always given me a sense of pride for some reason that my congressman introduced the Fair Tax legislation, even though I obviously had nothing to do with it.  So now Linder will take his leave, and Georgia’s 7th District looks for new leadership.  The heart of the 7th is Gwinnett County, a suburb of Atlanta, home of the Triple-A Gwinnett Braves and 800,000 of your closest friends (except during rush hour).  The district also contains other metro counties including Forsyth, Barrow, Newton, and Walton.

A Republican will win the district.  That’s not a prediction; it is a statement.

So the question many are asking in the 7th at this moment is, “Who can be as good as Linder?”  That’s the wrong question.  Let’s ask who can be better than Linder.  And that’s not a knock on Linder.  It’s simply American to raise the bar and our expectations of our leaders.  And to Linder’s credit, he set the bar rather high.

In the past months we’ve seen a lot of candidates in the 7th.  Some have come late and some have gone early.  Some even left the race to return to houses of waffles only to wind back up in state politics.  There are many candidates in the race. Most of them have words.  Some of them have even had careers of political words for years.

There is one candidate, however, who is a candidate of action and most certainly can raise the bar.

Some of you will recognize the name Jody Hice from The Jody Hice Show, a nationally syndicated talk show featured on over 400 stations across the country.  Others of you will recognize the name from his courageous battle with the American Civil Liberties Union.  Several years ago, the ACLU journeyed to Georgia to force the Ten Commandments out of the Barrow County courthouse. Jody formed an organization that raised money to fund the county’s defense, standing toe to toe against one of the most anti-American institutions of the last hundred years.

Ultimately, this fight against the ACLU later led to legislation that was passed in Georgia allowing the display of the Ten Commandments in front of government buildings as long as it was displayed in historical context along with the Declaration of Independence, the U.S. Constitution, and the Bill of Rights.

In the Fall of 2008, Dr. Hice stood with 33 other pastors across the country to challenge an IRS code that strips pastors of their right to freedom of speech by way of threatening the removal of the tax-exemption status of the churches they pastor.  Get this: He mailed a copy of his speech to the IRS daring them to come after him.  They didn’t.  Probably a good decision on their part.

Earlier this year in January, Hice decided to step down from the pulpit.  He felt strongly that his current call was in defense of his nation and he had determined that he would make a bigger push with his radio show.  Now before dollars start clouding your vision, understand that Hice is not paid to run his radio program.  He stepped down from a paying gig in order to do a non-paying gig full time, having no idea how he would support his family all for the sake of restoring the Republic.  Take a second with that in this economy.  Don’t brush over that fact.

In March of this year Hice was approached and recruited to run for Congress and was made aware he could retain his radio show while representing the people of Georgia.  So Hice accepted being tapped to run.

In case you didn’t catch that, I’ll write it again. The Jody Hice Show will be retained in some fashion even if Dr. Hice is elected to Congress.

Hice will be the only member in Congress who can walk out the door of the assembly chamber and walk into a radio station and sit there and tell you exactly what is going on in your government.  We aren’t talking about members of Congress getting 30 seconds here and there on your favorite news network.  We are talking about a radio show of several hours for a Representative to sit down and hash out with the public what is actually happening in the chamber.

That’s political Direct Media at its finest.

In the coming weeks, individuals will begin to pull levers here in Georgia during early voting leading up to the 20th of July.  The vote will be of vital importance for the second most populated district in Georgia.

I have personally endorsed Dr. Jody Hice.  And in full transparency so has ConservativeCongress.com, a conservative candidate evaluation platform of which I am a co-founder.  But that group has also endorsed other candidates in the district who met organizational criteria as well.  I was not paid to write this, I don’t work for Hice, and I have not donated to any primary campaign.  (Rules of which all members of ConservativeCongress.com agreed to abide by at the projects onset.)

The simple truth is that I am of the conviction that actions speak louder than words.  And the profiles in courage of Dr. Jody Hice putting his feet to the fire speaks for itself as the representative leadership that we need in Washington, D.C.

Nick R. Brown is the founder of the political commentary site thelobbyist.net, and director of the candidate evaluation site ConservativeCongress.com.