Dear Family and Very Special Friends:
Since Tuesday Night I have been struggling with feelings that can best be described as “bereavement”, aka, “grieving”. As a physician I recognize that I am experiencing the aspects of the classic stages of grief described by Dr. Kubler-Ross:
Denial >> Anger > >Bargaining >> Depression >> Acceptance
Each stage is rather time dependent, and they sometimes jump back and forth. I have wanted to write to you all, in part to be your “Grief Counselor”, but I have had to heed the admonition, “Physician, Heal Thyself” first. So please forgive my delay in reaching out to you while I’ve been trying to rush my own Acceptance. I haven’t achieved that fully yet, and probably won’t for a while, and maybe never will completely. It remains a mystery to me how our nation could have chosen such a pathway of sustained and further inevitable failure over the best person to present for the presidency in recent history, with proven abilities and track record to fix broken things and to bind up the wounds of a bitterly divided nation.
On the positive side, let me say to each of you that the experience of getting to know so many people who are just WONDERFUL in their love of God, Country and Sound Principles, has been incredibly sweet and uplifting. I want to thank you each personally for your responses to my requests for support for Mitt, for your leadership in the cause of trying to get him elected, for the goodness of soul I feel in each of you, and for the bonding that all of this has brought about between us. Along with the following statement from the late Howard W. Hunter, former leader of my Church (It was he , BTW, who recommended to Mitt and me 44 years ago that we read Napoleon Hill’s Think and Grow Rich, to understand principles of success, which go far beyond financial success!), the bonds of friendship forged in this campaign are the most comforting walls I’m leaning on at present. Said he, “If our lives and our faith are centered on Jesus Christ …, nothing can ever go permanently wrong. On the other hand, if our lives are not centered on the Savior and his teachings, no other success can ever be permanently right.”
While I have been trying to “get a grip”, one of my dear younger sisters, Tanya Skeen, of Charlottesville, wrote the letter that essentially I knew I was going to write to you, but hadn’t been able to just yet. So please read her thoughtful reflections, with which I fully agree.
Letter from Dane’s Younger Sister, Tanya
My Dear Romney Supporters and Friends,
I would like to thank everyone who worked in any way to elect Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan. I so appreciate your support and encouragement, and I especially appreciate knowing that there are so many who share the same hopes and desires for this wonderful country. I am very disappointed with the results of the election, but I agree with those who would encourage us to pray for President Obama and for this country. I have not lost faith either in our country or in the God who led and inspired our Founding Fathers in the establishment of our Constitution.
We must, I believe, be judicious in how we support the President. We owe it to our future generations to be sure that we do not blindly support those policies that are counter to what we know to be right. I believe in supporting what is right, not simply an elected position. Therefore, I cannot easily and quickly dismiss the several ways that this president has weakened our country, particularly when, as far as we know, he will continue with this same kind of leadership. I think of the saying, “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.”
I love our country and will try to do my part to protect and defend our freedoms and liberties. If our leaders do not do the same, and if those leaders are not truthful with our citizens, and if they promote measures that are designed to undermine the natural family and take away our freedoms and rights, I will do all that I can to support changing that leadership through the democratic process.
We live in a country founded upon Judeo-Christian values, blessed by God, as long as we remember Him. I cannot support actions that are contrary to those beliefs and values, such as same sex marriage, ignoring pleas for protection to Americans, abortion on demand, redistribution of wealth, socializing medicine, and weakening our military. In Proverbs 4:7, we are told, “With all Thy getting, get understanding.” With this “understanding” it becomes incumbent upon us to become informed, and when necessary, to do what is within our power to protect and defend our liberties, our families and our religion.
I do not believe that the Lord wanted Obama to win, but I do believe that He gave us our moral agency, and with that, we are free to choose, and we are accountable for our choices. The Lord blessed us with Mitt Romney, who could have restored America to its greatness. The majority of America rejected that blessing. To me, this is tragic. I am not concerned with which party wins the election, I am concerned with America staying America, being strong and true and free – and better! – and being “one nation under God.” However, I do not believe God has or will abandon us. We must now look ahead. We must do what we can to prepare for the future – whatever that may bring with it. As Mitt Romney stated earlier, with Obama’s past record, we have been forewarned about the future of our country.
I do, however, have hope for the future. Let me share a quote with you that I so appreciate from a leader of our church. When speaking about a month ago, he referred to both domestic and foreign issues and said, “The Lord knows the schedule of the train…, and the train is running on time.” It brings me great comfort to know that God is all knowing and all powerful. I am so thankful for His great love for us.
There can be good things that come from this loss, and I am grateful for the good. Mitt Romney has given us the very best example of what a president could be. There is nothing amiss in his character or his background. I am hopeful that if honesty, integrity, patriotism, Biblical values, and true leadership, are once again valued as they should and must be, that new leaders will come forth to bless our country in the future. I think as the campaign progressed it showed that there can be a bright future for the Republican party. We have, as Dr. Charles Krauthammer put it, a new generation of Republican leaders, who in only a couple of years will be prepared to lead our country, such as Sen. Ayotte, Paul Ryan, Marco Rubio, Bobby Jindal, Texas Congressman Ted Cruz, Nikki Haley, and others. He pointed out that Obama is a “man of the Left” and won by being “small and negative.” Romney went “large” and “did honorably well.”
It is also very heartening to me to have seen so many people in our country who have enthusiastically supported the values that Mitt Romney has supported in his campaign. As my brother Dane McBride reminded me, if God were prepared to save Sodom if only 10 righteous souls could be found, then we can be encouraged that we can still have His blessings. I know that there are millions of God-loving people who love our country and have hoped and prayed for righteous leadership.
As we hope for the future, we need to also learn from the past. Mitt endured attacks from the Obama Campaign, the mainstream media, and frequently, even attacks from members of his own party. (My opinion is that the Primary debates seemed to be bent on destroying the best qualified person and with disregard, provided our opposition with fodder for future attacks. Loyalty and support seemed to trickle down eventually, but quite slowly.) We also need to learn to better communicate conservative values to the younger voters, Hispanics, and others, in ways that will resonate with them. Yesterday, I met with some local Republican women leaders, and we discussed possibilities we might consider in this effort. (Ideas that I think can really work!)
We have truly been the recipients of some of God’s choicest blessings. As stated in the beautiful prayer at the Romney Rally in Lynchburg, Virginia, given the day before the election, “This is a land which is choice above all other lands.” No other country has as many freedoms as we are blessed with in America. We must be diligent in maintaining our freedoms and never become casual about them or complacent, as we go forward in this uncertain time. We must never forget from whom those blessings come, and how easily they can be lost if we are not diligent.
Thank you all for your support, your many hours of service, and your love of God, family and country. What a blessing and joy it has been to my family and me to work side by side with such great people as you. I pray that God will continue to bless Mitt Romney and his family, and others, for their patriotism, courage, sacrifices, for all that they have endured, and their goodness.
May God bless America, and may we pray for the president to lead our country with integrity and a commitment to what America has always stood for.
Much warmth and gratitude,
Tanya K. Skeen