The future of the Republican Party

(To the editors, WSJ, Nov. 17) The 11 letters to your newspaper today read like they were churned out of a Democratic talking points focus group. So, the Republican party will become a successful enterprise whenever it abandons its core principles? All this while "going back to its roots?" Anyone who thinks that abandoning the powerless unborn children and the endangered institution of marriage is somehow in line with Republicanism knows nothing about its true roots. Back in 1854, when the ruling Democratic Party committed itself to aiding and abetting the spread of slavery into Western territories and, in principle, to all states, old as well as new, North as well as South, the anti-slavery members of the Democrat and Whig parties coalesced into what soon became the Republican Party. If ever there was movement which appeared to be unlikely to succeed, this was it. A Democratic President, a Democratic Congress and, yes, a Democratic Supreme Court were poised to make slavery national.

Contrary to the naive theory of "progress" so alluring to many of our elites today, the Negroes' prospects for justice were worse, not better, than they were in 1776 or 1789. The reigning opinions and even the science of the day had decreed that blacks were inherently inferior and could never be accorded the same civil rights as whites. Leading Democrats like Sen. Stephen A. Douglas were amazed that Republicans would cause such a fuss for the sake of the rights of "a few miserable Negroes."

But Republicans in the beginning stuck to their guns and prevented the nation from acquiesing in the triumph of the slave power. Today's Republicans should be no less steadfast. As the Republican Party of 1856 declared its opposition to slavery and polygamy, those "twin relics of barbarism," so should the party of 2008 stand for the natural rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness against the threats posed by the cultures of death and immediate sexual gratification.