By Rod Miller, guest columnist
Rod Miller is a lifelong Republican who was a Republican candidate for U.S. House in 2018 and was the Rawlins Outlaws Outstanding Wrestler in 1968
I don’t need anyone to tell me how to be a Republican, I’ve been SHOWN how to be a good Republican by many great members of the party throughout my life.
The list of names is too long to put down here, but it includes Milward Simpson, Al Simpson, Pete Simpson, Della and Vern Vivion, Charlotte and Bob Vivion, Elmer Peterson, Cliff Hansen, Stan and Bobbie Hathaway, Harold Johnson, Doc Jeffrey, Bob Adams, and a whole bunch of Millers.
These and so many more were good examples to me of the Republican ethic … honest, fair, tight with a buck, and with the best interests of the State of Wyoming always uppermost in mind.
The name Frank Eathorne is nowhere in the list.
I’m a Republican because I choose to be, not because anyone tells me what I should be. I like to think that my membership in the GOP makes the party better, and not the other way around.
The verbose screed by the current chair of the party represents the Wyoming GOP resorting to threats, cajoling, intimidation, blackmail and whiny wheedling directed at its members in order to foster party purity.
What a sad state of affairs my party has gotten itself into!
Taken in an historical context, Eathorne and the GOP leadership’s dictum isn’t far off from the Chinese Cultural Revolution under Mao, when dissidents were purged to promote loyalty within the party.
When an organization’s leadership loses the ability to lead based upon strength and wisdom, it can only lead through coercion, the last resort of tyranny.
Nobody should be shamed into being a Republican. That is not how Blair, Lincoln and Stevens formed the Republican Party. The GOP was formed to be an incubator of new ideas, compassion, tolerance and a better way of solving the nation’s problems. The only “purity” test was patriotism.
I don’t need anyone telling me how to ride or brand. Trust me on that one. That would be like some drugstore cowboy telling me how to wear my hat.
A lifetime of being a Republican in Wyoming has taught me all I need to know. And, for Frank’s information, the brand that I ride for is the same one we should all ride for – not a D or an R, but a great, big Brown & Gold W!