Around here, you are the Man of the Year. America doesn’t have time for anything less.
You are concerned about the future of your country. You, like Sen. Marco Rubio — who has credited NR with helping him get to Washington — look around at his colleagues and protest their lack of a “sense of urgency.”
We don’t have all the time in the world to fix what’s broken.
And what’s broken is not just a mess the government has made.
You read National Review Online because you know there is more to life than some smooth-talker — even an authentically inspiring one — with a political plan. It’s up to us, and the choices we make in our daily lives, to get our country back on the right track. We respect the dignity of human life not only through laws, but also by what we watch and what we do and who we are. We want government to not infringe on our rights — but we also want a culture that isn’t a poison to those we love. We want the freedom to raise our children with our values, to not have to pay for things we oppose. We want an America where we do not bitterly protest the wealthy man, but aspire to get to keep a little more of our hard-earned wages, so that we can provide for our families and help our neighbor and save a little for a rainy day or a vacation.
These are tough times — in a lot of our bank accounts and in our headlines. Uncertainty, as it will in life, abounds. And it’s presidential-primary time, so emotions are high as we all try to discern who and what is best for our country. Even as well-intentioned circular firing squads are out, you’re here on National Review Online because you know it’s a home for honest opinion and analysis and reporting. Where conservatives will hash out differences while united in core conservative values that transcend any given candidate or election. It’s a place you come to be reminded of just what those values are. It’s a practical and intellectual browse. It’s relentless in consistently offering you exactly that.
This next year is an important one. Our nation is at something of a turning point. Are we going to continue to be a beacon for freedom, for justice? Or are we going to be transformed into just another secular socialist state? Man is getting lost in the state. Human dignity and freedom are getting lost to ideology. But you stand against that. You’re not an Occupy Wall Street protester, you’re a Get America Back on Track laborer. You work hard, you raise a family, you’re an informed voter. Over these next few months, you’ll click on National Review Online daily and share a Mark Steyn or Jonah Goldberg or Andy McCarthy or Ramesh Ponnuru or Rich Lowry item with friends and family and co-workers, some of whom don’t quite see the election as you do. You’ll rely on our growing reporting staff to provide the meat and potatoes that you need to build your case.
We rely on you to make that content possible. Before you spend your final Christmas dollar on that LED Snoopy at Target, consider sending us a small investment in the future — and getting our bills paid. Simply having a website costs money, even with a stable of experts who will respond to my requests for analysis at a moment’s notice for free, day after day, year after year. Getting Bob Costa to Iowa over New Year’s costs a few dollars, after all. And New Hampshire and South Carolina and two conventions are coming as well. On the ground, we can highlight what others won’t. We can help paint the full picture, in compelling colors. And we’ll make sure that those campaigning for House and Senate service don’t get lost in the national focus.
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Thanks again. And even though we have comments now, we still take e-mails. Send your wish lists to me anytime at email@example.com and I’ll share your ideas as we move forward.
I pray you and yours have a Merry Christmas and peaceful 2012 . . . or as peaceful as it can be in a presidential election year. We’ll be seeing a lot more of each other here, and, we hope, celebrating the opportunity to really get something good done in Washington come November.
— Kathryn Jean Lopez is editor-at-large of National Review Online.