This ad appeared in the Washington Post on 10/20/04. It was written and paid for by George J. Esseff, Sr, Reprints are offered at the web site http://www.whatiam.net/
where there is also a link to email the author.
Maybe you're a Republican?
In today's America ask a growing number of high school and college students,their teachers and professors, the self-anointed media elite and/or hardworking men and women of all ethnicities, the question, "What is aRepublican?" and you'll be told ".. a rich, greedy, egotistical individual,motivated only by money and the desire to accumulate more and more of it, atthe expense of the environment, the working poor....and all whom theyexploit..."
I am a Republican - And I am none of those things....and I don't know anyRepublicans who are!
WHAT I AM first and foremost, is a loving husband of some 52 plus years, thefather of four and an American who's proud of his country...and hiscountry's heritage
WHAT I AM is the grandson of immigrants who risked every-thing, includingtheir lives and those of their children, to escape tyranny in search offreedom.
WHAT I AM is a man who grew up during the Depression and witnessed firsthand the effects of the Stock Market crash and the soup lines that followed.I watched as both my parents and grand parents, who had very littlethemselves, share what food they had with a half dozen other families, whohad even less.
WHAT I AM is someone who worked his way through college by holding downthree and four jobs at a time and then used that education to build a betterlife.
WHAT I AM is a husband who at age 24 started his own business for the"privilege" of working 60, 70 and 80 hours a week, risking everything I hadincluding my health, in search of a better life for myself and my lovedones.
WHAT I AM is a businessman whose blood, sweat and tears....and plenty ofthem..., made it possible for me to provide a secure living not only for myfamily and myself, but also for literally hundreds of my employeesthroughout the years. Employees who in turn were able to buy their ownhomes, raise their own families and give back to their communities and theircountry.
WHAT I AM is a man who believes in God; a God who has blessed thiscountry... and all for which it stands.
WHAT I AM is someone who knows, if you doubt miracles exist in today'sworld, you need only to look into the face of those who received them....andthe eyes of those who give them.
WHAT I AM is an American who's proud that his President embraces a belief inGod; proud of a President who understands, as "politically incorrect" as itmay be, there is evil in this world and for the security and safety of allfreedom loving people everywhere, it must be confronted...and it must bedefeated.
WHAT I AM is an American who takes comfort in the knowledge that ourPresident refuses to allow decisions concerning the very safety and securityof this nation, to be governed by the political whims of foreigngovernments.
WHAT I AM is tired of hearing from leading Democrats who see only negativityin America; racism in her people; class warfare in her society and"political incorrectness" in her character.
WHAT I AM is a former democrat who now understands that it is the soldierand not the reporter that guarantees us our freedoms of press, speech anddissent.
WHAT I AM is a man who believes in the sanctity of life. A man who isrepulsed by the pandering of the political left for votes, at the expense ofthe unborn.
WHAT I AM is a husband and father who believes in the sanctity of marriageand the preservation of the family unit.
WHAT I AM is a ex-movie goer who is repulsed by those insecure, sociallyinept, elementary thinking, ego-inflated "entertainers" who have appointedthemselves "experts" in the fields of national security and geo-politics andthen use their forum to attack this nation, its leaders and itsactions....much to the delight and encouragement of our enemies.
WHAT I AM is an American who understands the difference between "censorship"and "choice." Evidently, these individuals do not, because when these same"celebrities" receive public ridicule for their offensive actions, the firstthing they yell is "censorship." What they seem incapable of understandingis...the right of free speech and dissent is shared equally by thoseoffended...as well as those who offend. I support and will continue tosupport those films and performers whom I choose to and refuse to supportthose I don't. It is my right as an American a right I will continue toenthusiastically exercise.
WHAT I AM is a voter, tired of politicians who ever time their votingrecords are subjected to public scrutiny, try to divert attention from theirpolitical and legislative failures by accusing their opponents of "attackads" and "negative campaigning"....and the news media who allow them to getaway with it.
WHAT I AM is a Catholic who loves his God and his Faith....and who's beentaught to respect all religions whose teachings are based in love, peace andcharity. As such, I am embarrassed and ashamed of those individuals in bothprivate and public life whose decisions and actions are devoid of any senseof character or morals; individuals who are only driven by what's best forthem....rather than what's right... often times at the expense ofmany....including our national security.
WHAT I AM is a realist who understands that the terrorist attack thatmurdered hundreds of innocent Russian children could have occurred here, inour heartland. That's why I sincerely believe America needs now, more thanever, a President who sees with a clear and focused vision and who speakswith a voice when heard by both friend and foe alike is understood,respected and believed.
WHAT I AM is eternally grateful to Ronald Reagan for having the bravery tospeak out against Communism and the courage of his convictions in leadingthe fight to defeat it; and George W. Bush for the vision, courage,conviction and leadership he has shown in America's war on terrorism amidstboth the constant and vicious, personal and political attacks both he andhis family are made to endure.
WHAT I AM is a human being, full of numerous faults and failures, but a mannonetheless who though not always successful has continually strived to do"what's right" instead of "what's easy." A man who is challenging thereligious leaders of all faiths, to not only preach to their congregationsthe fundamentals of "what's right" and "what's wrong," but to also then holdthem accountable for their actions in both the public and private sectors.
WHAT I AM is disgusted with the Courts who on one hand call the murder of apregnant woman a "double homicide," but then refer to the abortion of herbaby as "pro-choice".
WHAT I AM is someone deeply troubled by a political party which embraces acandidate whose primary "leadership" qualities center around his protestingof the Vietnam war and his labeling the honorable men and women who foughtin it, (50,000 of whom gave their lives in that action), as rapists, and warcriminals (John Kerry). That same political party then stepped forward thisyear to block the appearance of a true Vietnam war hero, retired Admiral andformer United States Senator, Jeremiah Denton, (a man who spent seven yearsand seven torturous months in a North Vietnam prison), from speaking beforean open session of the California legislature as part of that state's 4th ofJuly celebration. The reason Democrats gave for refusing to allow thisAmerican hero to speak before their state legislature was because of the"conservative" nature of his views. As an American, that troubles medeeply....as well it should you. (Are you listening Mr. D?)
WHAT I AM is a man who feels the need to spend, ONE HUNDRED& FOUR THOUSAND SIX HUNDRED & FIFTY FIVE THOUSANDDOLLARS ($104, 655.60, tax paid) of his own money, to purchase thisadvertisement, in order to set the story straight. Some may say this moneywould have been better spent feeding the world's poor. At the risk ofsounding self-serving, as an American and as a Republican, for the lastsix decades of my life, I have done exactly that...and more. Followingthe examples of my parents and grand parents, I have used my earningsto feed the poor, shelter the homeless, provide housing for the elderlyand medical care for the sick.....and continue to do so...and I'm notalone in that work.
WHAT I AM is someone who is paying for this announcement at my sole expensein hopes of opening the eyes of those led blindly by ill-informed elementsof our great nation, who, through either ignorance, or malicious intent,repeatedly attack and belittle those of us who belong to a political partythat holds true to the belief, "The rights of the governed, exceed the powerof the government." For those interested, I am speaking only as atax-paying individual who is in no way associated with the RepublicanNational Committee, nor with any of its directors, or delegates.
WHAT I AM is a man who understands, "the American way of life" is a messageof self-empowerment for all.
WHAT I AM is an American who is grateful that our nation gives each of usthe opportunity of self-determination and the right to benefit from thefruits of self achievement.
WHAT I AM is an American who wants to preserve that way of life for all whoseek it.
WHAT I AM is blessed to be an American.... and proud to be a Republican.