We all know that politics is chock full of special interest groups. In fact, in some cases, it can be said that special interest groups are a part of the problem and that they present a roadblock to the greater good of the people. That case can be made when our legislative leaders allow themselves to cater exclusively to special interests. Doing so causes them to lose sight of the big picture and the comprehensive effects of their legislation on society as a whole.
But not all so-called special interest groups are self absorbed, greedy blocks of voters seeking more than their fair share. Some don’t exist for the purpose of more money or attention. Some exist simply to make sure that their concerns are not ignored. They make sure that their concerns are taken into consideration.
Recently, I came across such a group.
It is a group of people who share in common something that crosses all religious, ethnic, sexual and class boundaries. Rich or poor, black or white, gay or straight, male or female, these people have disabilities. They are impaired by handicaps that steal them of things that we take for granted, like seeing or hearing or mobility. They are the truly less fortunate among us in America. They are the people who no matter what the shape of their 401k is or how good or bad the economy is, they have other or additional, ever present, hurdles to overcome.
Yet these same people believe that the only disability in life is a bad attitude. In fact, these people are defying their adversities and the term disability, altogether.
They call themselves Can Do Conservatives of America and they are organizing themselves to make sure that their voices are heard and that their good example is made.
The group’s creator is a 26 year old conservative from Lawrenceville, Georgia who describes himself as someone who has been “blind since birth and blessed with other handicaps”. His name is Brian Donegan and he is relatively new to politics.
His first foray into politics took place this past year when he volunteered for his favorite Republican candidate during the primaries. In the time following the primaries Brian noticed attempts by both major political parties to reach out and appeal to different groups. But he also noticed that those attempts failed to target the disabled.
So with a “can do” attitude and his conviction to ideological principles, Brian created a coalition designed at organizing the efforts and message of conservatives with disabilities.
Mr. Donegan describes the principles of Can-Do Conservatives as follows:
We are looking for a hand up, not a hand out. We are in favor of liberty and freedom to pursue the American dream like anyone else.
We resolve that we cannot have the freedom to pursue the “American Dream” under socialism.
We are in favor of less but competent government that allows us to retain our dignity while getting the help and assistance we need.
We are in favor of an economic system that allows us the freedom to move up the economic ladder through hard work and determination, most especially getting the Fair Tax enacted.
We are in favor of reforming Health Care by focusing on preventative care that will lower the cost and burden on the individual.
We are in favor of passing a Veteran’s bill of rights. They are our heroes and deserve all the thanks and help we can give them after serving and fighting to protect our freedom.
We are in favor of reforming education to allow the freedom to choose how our children are educated to increase competition in order to improve the system so everyone wins.
Now you may disagree with some of those points and you may even oppose the conservative ideology that Brian believes in but one thing you can not do is deny Brian Donegan credit. As a blind man, not only does he have more clarity of purpose and sense of civic duty than many others, he has the ability to make us see more clearly.
Despite having a handicap that makes life tougher than it may already be for some, Brian is doing more than pontificating and sitting on the sidelines. He is setting an example and taking part in shaping our nation, not just complaining about it. He is also going a long way in achieving the goal set out by disabled poet Robert Hansel who once wrote “ We, the one’s who are challenged, need to be heard. To be seen not as a disability, but as a person who has, and will continue to bloom. To be seen not only as a handicap, but as a well intact human being.”
Brian is doing just that. Despite the fact that we should be the ones going out of our way to assist people like Brian, he is proving to be intact and he is advancing a cause greater than self.
Brian is what being American is all about.
No matter what the circumstance, no matter what the condition, being an American is something special. Being American is something that is suppose to unleash the power of freedom like no where else and Brian Donegan is demonstrating to us all that the power of freedom can overcome just about any situation or diversity. The power of freedom gives everyone the opportunity to be whole and productive people.
Brian Donegan is an inspiring figure. I am glad to have him in the ranks of the Republican Party and I am heartened by his taking part in advancing a conservative ideological cause and strengthening the cause of freedom in America.
If you would like to lend a hand in this effort, you can begin by reaching out to Can-Do Conservatives of America and their officers on Facebook by clicking here. Initiated only a few days ago, Can-Do Consevatives have already begun to make their presence known and are getting a great response.
Why should you never iron a 4-leaf clover?
You don’t want to press your luck.