Dr. Ben Carson at CPAC 2014: ‘The most important person, when it comes to the future, is you.’
Wise and gentle neurosurgeon Dr. Ben Carson hates political correctness. He’s not wild about “dummies” who twist common-sense things he says into absurd slander. And anyone who wants to tell him America is not an exceptional nation is cordially invited to “go jump in a lake.”
Simple common sense is Dr. Carson’s watchword. He looks around the Beltway and sees a neurotic, overwrought dominant culture that has ordinary folks “beaten into submission” and “afraid to speak up for what they believe.” He’s not going to be bullied himself, and he encouraged everyone else to follow his lead, tearing the badges away from the P.C. police and enjoying a few laughs at their expense. He understands the Left’s game, as laid out by radical guru Saul Alinsky, and he’s ready to play.
Carson was greeted by a packed hall festooned with flags urging him to run for President. He began his speech by introducing his wife to the crowd. When he glanced at the clock and announced he was running out of time, the walls rang with cries for him to keep going. There is a great appetite for the intelligence, good humor, and common sense that he offers. His speech was a half-dozen seemingly disconnected things that happened to be on his mind that day. The audience would happily have remained if another twenty thoughts had occurred to him.
What makes Carson so arresting? I think it’s the contrast between his soft-spoken manner and the sheer defiance of his words. His voice is a pitcher of fresh lemonade, but what he’s saying echoes with the sound of thunder. He’s not interested in pushing anyone around… or in getting pushed. There are a lot of decent, hard-working, community-minded people in the world who recoil from declarations of defiance shouted by fiery revolutionaries, but they’ll nod in agreement with Ben Carson. He’s conservative in the purest sense of the word, bearing witness of a recent past that worked better than much of what we have today, reminding people of truths they have been ordered to forget.
For example, he mentioned that he’s often asked if he misses his medical practice. “I miss what medicine used to be,” he mused. “I don’t miss what it has become.” He views ObamaCare as “the most massive shift of power that ever occurred,” and encourages returning that power to the people.
How did he rise from humble beginnings to become a world-renowned surgeon? “Because we live in a land of opportunity, because I had a mother who took no excuses, and because I believe in God.”
“I still believe that marriage is between a man and a woman,” he stated simply, adding that “of course gay people should have the same rights as everyone else, but they don’t get extra rights. They don’t get to re-define marriage.”
Carson bristled as he recounted pressure brought to bear against a friend, Dr. Melanie Cooper, who faces boycotts of her banquet for a diabetes foundation because Carson was invited to attend. “They say, ‘We don’t want him spewing his poison, particularly to the young people.’ Well, I wonder what that poison would be? Would that be the poison of self-reliance and self-respect that people should have? Would that be the poison of telling people in minority communities that they need to learn how to turn over the dollar a few times in their community, before they send it out and that’s how you create wealth… and that you should reach back and pull others with you… and if you do that, you don’t have to depend on anybody else? Would it be the poison of talking about how education is the key, that you don’t have to be a victim, that it’s a matter of your mind and what you decide to do, and that the most important person when it comes to your future is you, and the decisions that you make, and the things you decide to do? This is America. We are free, and we can do that.”
“And most importantly, would it be the poison of putting what God says before what any man says?” he concluded. Yes, I think that might just be the poison his adversaries have in mind.
I don’t know if the people carrying all those Ben Carson for President signs will get what they want. He doesn’t give off that “running for President” vibe. He’s still a lovably awkward speaker – he plows right through his applause lines, appearing surprised when the roof comes down. He doesn’t seem interested in rounding up the kind of organization he would need to mount a run for office.
We all love the idea of plain-spoken Cincinnatus striding from his daily labors into high office, but we should also realize that a presidential run is incredibly hard work. Carson himself might chuckle at the notion of getting politics out of politics; he’s devoid of both cynicism and illusions. For right now, he just has a few things he wants to talk about, a bit of advice to offer… and he really hates seeing good people get pushed around by bullies.