A Bit of Good News From the Front Line
LRRP (pronounced lurp) is a Vietnam War military acronym meaning long-range reconnaissance patrol. The mission of a LRRP is to penetrate enemy territory and to perform “reconnaissance, surveillance and target acquisition.” The concept is as old as warfare itself, but LRRP became its popular designation during the fighting in Vietnam.
Now, let’s fast-forward to 2023. Let’s assume you’re a workaday American. You’re a chemist, a stone mason, a nurse, a homemaker, a teacher. Maybe you go to church, maybe you have a spouse and kids you love and support, maybe you own a fine house in the country or rent an apartment in the city. Your chief desire is to live your life in alignment with your values without too many restrictions.
If that description fits you, then whether you know it or not, you’re on a long-range reconnaissance patrol. As C.S. Lewis put it years ago in Mere Christianity, though in a different context, we’re in “enemy-occupied territory.” Even worse, the enemy controls the culture and the government, so there’s no perfect place of safety available to us. Make a mistake, step out of line, and we’re in for a battle.
We’ve seen what happens to those who end up fighting these battles. Take the recent case of a pro-life Catholic father, who frequently prays outside a Philadelphia abortion clinic, being arrested for protecting his son against an abortion clinic escort. Luckily, this father was found not guilty.
And it’s not even just those on the right who are targeted. Anyone—including those who are left-of-center—who puts a toe out of line is punished. Progressive Jennifer Sey, for instance, was forced from her position as brand president of Levi Strauss & Co. and lost her chance of becoming CEO for speaking out against COVID school closures.
This assault on character, profession, and free speech continues today. The message of the enemy is clear: Desist or be destroyed.
But here’s some good news: Many Americans and others around the world are fighting back. Their weapons aren’t the firearms and grenades of a combat patrol but are instead virtues like truth, courage, and a passion for freedom. These “warriors for the working-day,” as Shakespeare might call them, are gathering together on this political and cultural battlefield under that grand old rattlesnake “Don’t Tread on Me” banner.
And like Shakespeare’s warriors at Agincourt, their “hearts are in the trim.” Parents are protesting school board policies. Others—like Mike Benz and his Foundation for Freedom Online—are advocates for a free and open Internet. Even in the government, the House of Representatives’ Select Subcommittee on the Weaponization of the Federal Government will investigate accusations of abuse of power by government and its intelligence agencies. There is a ragtag army of patriots springing up in this country.
Others engaged in this battle are less organized but practice, often unknowingly, the hit-and-run tactics of guerilla warfare. Commentators who mock the ineptitude of officials like Vice President Kamala Harris and Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg, the mother who quietly teaches a balanced account of American history to her children, the men and women who staff embattled pro-life pregnancy centers—these and many others are freedom fighters. They are living contradictions against the lies and misinformation daily fed to us by our elites, our government, and our mainstream media.
And all these actions are having an effect. In her article “Wicked Bastards on the Run,” Elizabeth Nickson offers a long list of casualties and defeats suffered by those whose policies have brought ruin to so many Americans.
We’re going to win this war, but we won’t win from numbers alone.
In the War for American Independence, George Washington realized he could eventually defeat the British simply by keeping a force in the field. He didn’t need to win all the battles, or even most of them; he simply had to refuse to be defeated. As long as we do the same, as long as we turn our backs on despair and stand fast, we will keep our freedoms.
With truth and liberty as our cause, our long patrol is going to end in victory.
Image credit: Picryl-DVIDS, PDM 1.0