Former Lt Governor and 2010 Republican Gubernatorial candidate James ‘Duke’ Aiona spoke to a luncheon organized by Hawaii Republicans for Life in Kakaako Wednesday. Here are some excerpts from his talk:
…Edmund Burke (said) ‘The only way for evil to triumph is for good people to do nothing.’
I think about that more and more each day as I read the paper.
Actually I’ve kind of come out of my cave a little bit now and I am catching up on the news more and more. For a while I was just staying away from all the news that was coming out.
And it hasn’t changed. Its still kind of negative. Its about what our leaders are doing or not doing and it obviously clashes … with a lot of the values that I have as a person and as a candidate that ran for governor of the State of Hawaii.
So I’m more and more coming in tune with that right now. I remind myself about that: ‘The only way for evil to triumph is for good people to do nothing.’
So what I fall back on is what is a good person? Am I a good person and what is a good person? And so I fall back on my faith and my belief.
If you don’t believe that you’re a good person, if you don’t have faith in yourself and what you believe in, then obviously you’re not going to be a good person, right?
So I try to believe that I am a good person. And I want to try to overcome evil. I do not want evil to overcome us. And if I do nothing, that’s exactly what is going to happen.
It’s pretty interesting today … I don’t know how many of you saw the same news story I heard. It was about a Wall Street Occupier protester … she was basically crying about being criticized by her fellow protesters.
And why was she crying about being criticized by her fellow protesters? Because she took a job with a Wall Street company….
So I laugh about it, and I think you can all see where I’m going here: What triumphs in this case?
It is the principle that she believes in or was it the money?
We stand for principle. And when you stand for principle if you don’t stand for it 100%, then don’t get behind it.
Because if you’re going to compromise—and especially if you’re going to compromise on something that’s in regard to life—then don’t stand behind it.
I take exception to anybody that says, “Life is when you’re 18 weeks old, when you’re two days old, or whatever it may be. Life is upon conception.
Only the Lord, only our God our Creator dictates life and death. From, as we say from the womb to the tomb. Only God can control that.
So I don’t see any compromise whatsoever. I can’t. If I’m principled and I truly believe it.
And I don’t think that’s taking a hard stance, not on an issue life this. There is always room for compromise in other issues…. But when it comes to this issue of life and death, there is no compromise. There is only one … Creator that can determine life and death.
So (unlike) that the Wall Street Occupier, I hope that when it comes time for a bill or when we’re criticized by the newspaper. Or if there’s a group out there that’s protesting … I hope we don’t succumb to something because … money, and here comes the stupid contract and it’s right in front of me and there we go, we compromise.
And that’s why I admire all of you and I admire Jacquelyn (Skaf), who put this event together. She always brings it back to life. Never, never compromise ….
… (tells story about 2002 GOP Lt Governor’s race) …
We have civil unions, we will soon have gambling, we will have assisted suicide, we will have the legalization of marijuana, we will soon have all of these, I guess they call them progressive bills. We will have all of that in front of us unless we stay unified as best as we can ….
I tell you right now, being out of office for one year, I’ve been approached for how many times, somebody said, ‘You’re in the wrong party. Here’s the card that you need to have. I’ve been approached by people who’ve been Republicans who said, “I’m thinking about running as a Democrat.”
I can’t tell you how difficult it is…. Why call yourself a Republican, run as a Republican, and then all of a sudden say, well ‘now I’m going to run as a Democrat.’
What’s the only reason? They’ll say, you can’t win as a Republican.
I thought we’d dispelled all that when we won eight years ago—and won as Republicans …. I still believe in this party. I still believe in our values. It’s just a matter of us sticking together. Yeah, we’re going to disagree, we’re going to have our differences. But when it does come to the core issues—and even my friends who are staunch Democrats—I keep telling them, you are Republicans at heart. Because when we have discussions, about these various issues, we all end up on the same side. They’re all about pro-life, they’re all about family, they’re all about having traditional marriage, they’re all about that…. That means you’re really a Republican, because you have these core values.
We might differ on some economic issues. We might differ on some of the social issues. But its not a great difference. But its these core issues that are really decisive when it comes to Democrats and Republicans….
With that said, I encourage you to please keep up the good fight. I’ll do all that I can now that I’m in a position in an organization (St Louis School) where I can… you know its so good, I can say ‘God’ every day. I can pray every day…. I can come out and speak boldly now about pro-life. I can speak boldly about traditional marriage. I don’t have to worry about any repercussions. I can stand up and say what … I believe in because of where I am right now…..
Am I going to run for office again in the near future? The answer is “no” in regards to anything but a possible run in 2014 for governor. And I’m not committed to that, I’m open to it. I have to remain open to it. I don’t believe that God has really shown me the way that He wants me to go right now. He’s opened a door for me. He’s got me in a place now where I don’t know if this is temporary or this is permanent. I don’t know where he wants me to be. There’s still a lot of time and I take my direction from Him. So we’ll see. But I can’t say. I’d be disobedient, I wouldn’t be faithful to Him, if I said at this point in time, absolutely not….
Let me tell you. It has crossed my mind many times in regards to running for office again. Obviously I’m not a bred politician like some people are. There are some out there that that’s their whole life. They just want to be in office. I don’t think you have to look very far in any of the races that are happening right now to kind of identify those who are that type of candidates--that will run for any office that opens up. They’ll be there, they’ll be running. I don’t think you need to go very far.
Those are the ones you’ve got to be cautious about. Look at their motives--why they’re running. They’ll give you the right answers. It’ll be textbook perfect and some people fall for it and say, ‘They have the heart for it.’ They have the heart because they’re saying the right stuff. But we’ve got proof right in front of us.
And I don’t want to say, ‘I told you so’ but the person in office (Abercrombie) right now, leading our state, I believe that he fooled a lot of people. The thought they saw a heart in this guy, but that wasn’t true.…
So I am open. I’m thinking about it. But I haven’t made any decisions….
Related: Duke Aiona to Address Pro-Life Group