Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Phyllis Schlafly Interview

(OL) 1. It is an honor to be with you. Thanks for your time. How have you been and what are the latest happenings in your world?

(Phyllis Schlafly)
I went to David Horowitz’s Restoration Weekend, so I've been in Palm Beach for three days, I just got back and it was very enjoyable.

(OL) 2. You have written many books on various subjects such as family, feminism and religion. When you look back on the success of those books, what is your hope that people will take from reading them?

(Phyllis Schlafly)
The most influential and really the most important was the first one, "A Choice Not An Echo," and really what that did was to tell the grassroots to rise up and not let the establishment give us any more losing candidates. To get the kind of candidates the grassroots wanted. "A Choice Not An Echo" brought people into the conservative movement. It was a major factor in the building of the conservative movement

(OL) 3. One of your most recent books, No Higher Power: Obama’s War On Religious Freedom, goes in depth about this administration’s continuous efforts to abolish religious liberty. With a second term left to complete, what is your solution to combat these assaults against people of faith?  

(Phyllis Schlafly)
I think they can speak against it and write against it and if there are any Supreme Court decisions that go wrong, they should rise up and attack the Supreme Court decision. They shouldn't just sit around and let the Supreme Court wipe out the First Amendment, which is what Obama wants. So I think public protest and public action is simply very important.

(OL) 4. Can you tell us about your involvement in the fight against common core and briefly explain it to our readers?

(Phyllis Schlafly)
Common core is the latest of the attempt to have federal control of the curriculum in public schools. Now, it's against the law for the federal government to try to run our curriculum in the public schools, but they do it in devious ways. You notice that the common core people will say, "Oh, there isn't any curriculum, it's just the standards." But that's playing with words, because the common core is moving to control all the testing in the country. If the kids are going to pass the tests, the teachers are going to have to teach to the tests. I also think that the attempt to have a national standard is dumbing down. It's like that radio slogan, where all kids are above equal; we know that's not possible.

I think everything is bad about it. I think it's a tremendous money making scheme. There's just hundreds of thousands of dollars that have gone into enforcing it on the public schools and other schools, from the testing mechanism. I haven't seen anything good about it at all. Parents are very upset about the math assignments and other assignments that their kids are coming home with. I think we would be better off if we just leave the curriculum up to the state and local school boards, which is what Canada does. Canada doesn't have a national control over their education and they get along fine.

(OL) 5. In 1972 you founded the Eagle Forum, a national organization that encourages everyday citizens to participate in the public policymaking process. What led your inspiration to start this movement?

(Phyllis Schlafly)
I started writing my newsletter, The Phyllis Schlafly Report in 1967 as a result of a campaign I waged to be President of the National Federation of Republican Women, an election that I lost. But I had all of these thousands of women who wanted to follow my leadership. I devised the newsletter as a way of communicating with them and sending them a message every month about politics.

In those days I wrote mostly about the strategic ballots, about the Soviet Missile threat and I would write an issue each month about some important national political topic. In February of 1972, I wrote one issue called, "What's Wrong With Equal Rights For Women?" And it kind of took off into orbit. A few weeks after I mailed it, a friend from Oklahoma called and said, "Phyllis, we took your newsletter to our legislators and they voted down ERA (Equal Rights Amendment)." ERA just came out of the congress and I hadn't paid any attention to it until I researched it for that newsletter, but then I took a look at it and read it and thought it was a very bad deal, basically a fraud.

(OL) 6. Out of all your years as a staunch defender of upholding conservative values, what has been the most challenging obstacle that you had to overcome and why?

(Phyllis Schlafly)
I guess the most challenging obstacle is the media. They are against what the grassroots want in most cases and they are very powerful. They repeat their bias again and again.
(OL) 7. Being a seasoned platform debater, what is the most important trait one must possess to be as impactful as you have when it comes to debating the issues in the political arena?

(Phyllis Schlafly)
I think you have to know your facts. My speeches and debates are very fact intensive. I try to give people information that is truthful information. They can check it out and can find I was telling them the truth. I have found that a lot of my opponents didn't really tell it like it is. I found if I stuck to the absolute truth I was better off and could win most of the debates.

(OL) 8. What advice can you give to the rising electorate of young Americans to be better informed and remain involved in the future of politics?

(Phyllis Schlafly)
I think politics is a battle and a lot of people don't like that, but there are enough people who do. They enjoy the competition of it and they're also impressed with how important it is because it means what kind of a country we're going to live in. I urge those who that can take it to be active in politics and be active as a volunteer. I think it's very important to have as many people as possible to do that.

(OL) 9. What is your vision for America?

(Phyllis Schlafly)
People are very depressed, our kind of people are very depressed at the present time. But I gave them I hope encouragement that a small group, a minority group, can rise up and turn the country around. That’s what I'm trying to do and I hope that we can have enough people who will help on that.

(OL) Can you quote that beautiful scripture you are famous for saying in your speeches?

(Phyllis Schlafly)
"They who wait upon the Lord will rise up with wings as eagles, they will run, and not be weary."

I urge people not to be weary in trying to defend our country. I think Obama's taking us down the wrong road and it's up to conservatives to get our country back on the right track. We need everybody. I encourage people to be volunteers in politics. It's difficult, a lot of times it’s not fun but it's very important. I have gathered quite a lot of people who are willing to go into the battle and sustain themselves in the battle for a long time, which I’ve done for many, many years.

(OL) 10. How do you want your legacy to be remembered?

(Phyllis Schlafly)
I think I showed people that good people and conservatives can accomplish a great deal despite tremendous odds; I think that's what I did. I showed the conservatives that they can win despite all the odds being against them, despite the media, despite the big money of the RINOS, despite the power of people who are in government; we can still win.

Photo credit, Christian F. Scalise, Operation Liberty.

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