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Frogs Eat Their Own

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By Carl Mumpower- Each week the editors of The Tribune are selecting a communication from the Buncombe County Republican Party we feel will be of interest and value to our readers. You can learn more about your local Republican Party’s efforts at

Buncombe County is challenging turf for conservatives. As Asheville’s home base, we suffer the downsides of living in a hotbed of liberal-progressive-socialism.

No need to recycle those hurdles, but it might help to note a few positives. Though some would have one believe conservatives and unicorns suffer the same fantasy status, there are actually a lot of us. Buncombe County has 45,000 registered Republicans and a whole lot of other voters who lean in the right direction. Importantly, we carry the responsibility of being the largest population center in our region.

Being in the middle of so much left-minded irrationality sometimes garners sympathy from sister counties. The B.C.G.O.P. appreciates the support, but actually views our reality as a blessing – we are in a target rich environment providing much opportunity for mischief.

There are a surprising number of conservative thinkers in Asheville. Amidst all the hostility, many of us operate on a low-profile basis. We call that being “Quietly Conservative.” We do so with the understanding that quiet and passive are not the same thing. Ponder the power of a quiet Marine scout-sniper for clarity.

As an important bridge between the 10th and 11th Congressional Districts, Buncombe’s Republicans need to be on our ‘A” game. Look no further than our national representatives – Congressman McHenry and Congressman Meadows – for cues on why it’s so. Both have a big footprint in Washington and are thus targets for malice. The Republican Party is the only organized body to counter the left’s antagonism to the word ‘normal’ and those who apply that filter to political leadership.

Having a front row seat on the state of affairs with Buncombe’s Republicans, I can freely offer we are not yet on our A game. Why? Because we sometimes think more like frogs than elephants. Elephants unite – frogs eat their own.

Buncombe County is blessed with a growing group of Republican volunteers who genuinely want to contribute and uplift the conservative mission in WNC. Unfortunately, amidst that mix are those who find solace in anger, criticism, antagonism and the dubious game of “gotcha.” The latter represent the use of “rods” in a circumstance where “love and a spirit of gentleness” are much more likely to carry us to good places.

Why is a positive approach important? Remember where we live. We have more than our fair share of hostility coming from the other side. In a jungle full of left-minded cannibals busily downgrading our culture, Asheville is the last place Republicans need to be eating our own.

Getting rid of people is not the answer. As Republicans we share a common set of values – our real enemy remains those who wish to dismantle America’s traditional success equation – Liberty + Opportunity + Responsibility = Prosperity. For that important mission we need all our conservative thinkers and doers. We just need them at their positive best.

It remains a constant challenge for all of us to work toward compassion, cooperation, communication and consideration over other temptations. We remain free to disagree with one another – but doing so with a respectful hand and voice is key to the health and effectiveness of our conservative community.

That which is rewarded is repeated. If we support eating our own, we’re just going to get better at a bad habit. If we quietly say “no” to those behaviors and work to model something better, that’s what we will become.

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