Virginia Deserves Strong Leaders
Why the Upcoming Senate Elections are a Pivotal Moment for the Commonwealth
→Virginia will always be home for me.
Although I moved away over a decade ago, the sight of Massanutten and the Blue Ridge Mountains on the horizon as I exit I-81 fills me with an immediate sense of belonging. That's why the recent changes in the state have been so hard to stomach. From the rise in crime rates in major cities to the spread of radical left-wing ideologies in schools and the removal of historical monuments, I'd begun to worry that the Virginia I once knew was slipping away.
Returning home had become an exercise in frustration. Each visit seems to unveil yet another poorly-conceived policy that chips away at the state's character and history. I had all but given up hope, resigned to the belief that Virginia was destined to follow California's trajectory. The charming, historic streets of Richmond, I feared, would soon be overrun with social and economic problems, erasing any trace of the culture and history that make Virginia unique. Friends heard me lament that Virginia had become the "East Coast California," its long-term shift toward the left making it, in my eyes, a lost cause.
But I was wrong, the political landscape began to shift when Governor Glenn Youngkin entered the arena. For the first time in years, I saw a leader genuinely willing to advocate for conservative voices across Virginia. Youngkin astutely focused on transforming the educational landscape—a move that assured me of his imminent victory. Not only did he win the gubernatorial race, but he also secured a favorable General Assembly, granting Virginia a momentary respite from the destructive policies that Democrats had imposed on the state.
Eighteen months into his tenure, Governor Youngkin has already made significant strides. He has restructured school boards, eliminated radical policies, and most crucially, restored robust leadership to Virginia's Republican Party. His victory was a watershed moment for both conservatives and the state at large. Yet, as the next election cycle approaches, Virginia finds itself at another crossroads.
This election provides the sole opportunity during Youngkin’s term to secure a Republican-controlled State Senate while maintaining the House of Delegates. Failing to do so would give Democrats free rein to stymie Youngkin's progress, leaving Virginians to grapple with the aftermath of years of misguided left-wing governance.
Consequently, the upcoming Senate elections are the most critical that Virginia has faced in over a decade. It's a vote that will indelibly shape the future of the Commonwealth. But faced with this pivotal decision, Virginians must ask themselves several crucial questions: Which future should they choose? Who are the leaders worthy of their trust? And most importantly, which candidates genuinely have Virginia's best interests at heart when they step into office?
For anyone with a vested interest in the future of Virginia, the choices should be abundantly clear. Take, for instance, District 24, where Sheriff J.D. "Danny" Diggs is challenging incumbent Senator Monty Mason. Sheriff Diggs is not just another candidate; he is a lifelong Virginian and a strong conservative with an unwavering support for law enforcement. His dedication to the people of the Virginia Peninsula is evident in a career that spans over 45 years. He entered the field of law enforcement at the age of 19 as a police dispatcher in Poquoson. From there, he tirelessly worked his way up, taking on roles in corrections, serving as a uniformed officer, and eventually becoming an investigator.
For more than two decades, Sheriff Diggs has led law enforcement efforts in York County and Poquoson City, bringing a level of expertise and experience that is nearly unparalleled. His outstanding service hasn't gone unnoticed either; he's been recognized by numerous organizations, both within Virginia and across the United States.
In stark contrast to Sheriff Diggs stands his opponent, Senator Monty Mason, whose record and history raise serious questions about his qualifications for public office. While Diggs was already serving his community at 19, Mason was in college at William & Mary, where his fraternity held an event advertised as a "slave auction" in 1989. Despite previously claiming to have no knowledge of such an event during his tenure as fraternity president, newly uncovered evidence contradicts Mason's claims.
The significance of this cannot be overstated. Not only does it imply that Mason was aware of an egregiously insensitive event, but it also suggests a pattern of dishonesty. For instance, Mason was caught disparaging parents' rights as "garbage" and "stupid" when he thought no one was listening. This tendency to be less than truthful extends to his professional life as well; he has been known to take credit for Republican policies that he actually opposed.
But Mason's questionable past is only the tip of the iceberg. His voting record in office paints an even more concerning picture. Mason has been an advocate for radical left-wing policies that do little to better the lives of ordinary Virginians. He was among those who supported tying Virginia's environmental policies to California's stringent regulations, effectively outsourcing our state's policy-making. Moreover, Mason voted to double the gas tax, a move that hits the working class hardest. All of these actions reveal a consistent pattern of voting against policies that would genuinely benefit the residents of the Commonwealth.
The contrast between the two candidates could not be clearer. Mason's track record paints a picture of a man who cannot be trusted, a far cry from Sheriff Danny Diggs, whose long service to Virginia law enforcement stands as a testament to his integrity. Virginia needs more leaders like Diggs—leaders who are honest, forthright, and unimpeachably dedicated to the welfare of their constituents.
As Virginia stands at this historical precipice, the choices made in the coming elections will determine whether the Commonwealth returns to its storied legacy or continues down a path of ideological and moral decay. Governor Glenn Youngkin has proven that conservative leadership can restore sanity, dignity, and effectiveness to government. Like a lone sentinel against the chaos of recent years, his administration embodies the principles of fiscal responsibility, integrity, and a deep respect for the unique culture and history of Virginia.
Men like Sheriff Danny Diggs represent the epitome of what public service in the Commonwealth should be: principled, diligent, and wholly committed to the well-being of its citizens. They stand as guardians of Virginia's historical legacy, a bulwark against those who would dilute the state's proud heritage to suit modern political whims. These are the types of leaders that Virginia not only needs but also deserves. Leaders who understand that the future of the Commonwealth rests on the American values of personal responsibility, individual liberty, and limited government.
On the other hand, figures like Senator Monty Mason symbolize a different path—a path of deceit, disregard for constituents, and a willingness to align with harmful ideologies that serve not the people but a narrow, radical agenda. Such individuals have shown that they are undeserving of the trust and responsibility that come with public office. They do not embody the Virginia that many of us hold dear, a Virginia rooted in historical consciousness, bound by a sense of community, and guided by the tenets of good governance.
The future of Virginia is not merely an abstract concept to be debated in political circles; it is a living, breathing entity shaped by the collective will of its people. As the elections loom large, Virginians should not just be voting for candidates but for the very soul of the Commonwealth. We should choose leaders like Governor Youngkin and Sheriff Diggs—men of honor, dedicated to preserving the essence of Virginia that we all love. At this momentous juncture, anything less would be a disservice to the history, the values, and the very future of the Commonwealth.
Virginia, the choice is yours to make. Let it be a choice that honors the past, secures the present, and lays the foundation for a prosperous future.