Champion of Liberty: Charles Montesquieu

Dinner Topics for Thursday

key“Those people who will not be governed by God will be ruled by tyrants.”~ William Penn

Charles Montesquieu

Famous for his theory of Separation of Powers

montesquieuCharles-Louis de Secondat, Baron de La Brède et de Montesquieu (/ˈmɒntɨskjuː/;[1] French: [mɔ̃tɛskjø]; 18 January 1689 – 10 February 1755), generally referred to as simply Montesquieu, was a French lawyer, man of letters, and political philosopher who lived during the Age of Enlightenment. He is famous for his articulation of the theory of separation of powers, which is implemented in many constitutions throughout the world. He did more than any other author to secure the place of the word despotism in the political lexicon,[2] and may have been partly responsible for the popularization of the terms feudalism and Byzantine Empire.[citation needed]

Montesquieu’s early life occurred at a time of significant governmental change. England had declared itself a constitutional monarchy in the wake of its Glorious Revolution (1688–89), and had joined with Scotland in the Union of 1707 to form the Kingdom of Great Britain. In France the long-reigning Louis XIV died in 1715 and was succeeded by the five-year-old Louis XV. These national transformations had a great impact on Montesquieu; he would refer to them repeatedly in his work.

Montesquieu withdrew from the practice of law to devote himself to study and writing. He achieved literary success with the publication of his Lettres persanes (Persian Letters, 1721), a satire representing society as seen through the eyes of two imaginary Persian visitors to Paris and Europe, cleverly criticizing the absurdities of contemporary French society. He next published Considérations sur les causes de la grandeur des Romains et de leur décadence (Considerations on the Causes of the Grandeur and Decadence of the Romans, 1734), considered by some scholars, among his three best known books, as a transition from The Persian Letters to his master work. De l’Esprit des Lois (The Spirit of the Laws) was originally published anonymously in 1748. The book quickly rose to influence political thought profoundly in Europe and America. In France, the book met with an unfriendly reception from both supporters and opponents of the regime. The Catholic Church banned l’Esprit – along with many of Montesquieu’s other works – in 1751 and included it on the Index of Prohibited Books. It received the highest praise from the rest of Europe, especially Britain.

Montesquieu was also highly regarded in the British colonies in North America as a champion of liberty (though not of American independence). Political scientist Donald Lutz found that Montesquieu was the most frequently quoted authority on government and politics in colonial pre-revolutionary British America, cited more by the American founders than any source except for the Bible.[9] Following the American revolution, Montesquieu’s work remained a powerful influence on many of the American founders, most notably James Madison of Virginia, the “Father of the Constitution“. Montesquieu’s philosophy that “government should be set up so that no man need be afraid of another”[10] reminded Madison and others that a free and stable foundation for their new national government required a clearly defined and balanced separation of powers.

Besides composing additional works on society and politics, Montesquieu traveled for a number of years through Europe including Austria and Hungary, spending a year in Italy and 18 months in England where he became a freemason, admitted to the Horn Tavern Lodge in Westminster,[11] before resettling in France. He was troubled by poor eyesight, and was completely blind by the time he died from a high fever in 1755. He was buried in the Église Saint-Sulpice, Paris.

Read more about Charles Montesquieu

 

 

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Champion of Liberty: Alexander Hamilton

Champion of Liberty: Alexander Hamilton

Alexander Hamilton Quotes

keyFor it is a truth, which the experience of all ages has attested, that the people are commonly most in danger when the means of injuring their rights are in the possession of those [toward] whom they entertain the least suspicion. (Federalist Papers, No. 25, p.164)

Every unconstitutional action has usually been justified because it was for a “good cause.” Every illegal transfer of power from one department to another has been excused as “necessary.”

There is a certain enthusiasm in liberty, that makes human nature rise above itself, in acts of bravery and heroism.
Those who stand for nothing fall for anything.

A promise must never be broken.

It’s not tyranny we desire; it’s a just, limited, federal government.
Why has government been instituted at all? Because the passions of man will not conform to the dictates of reason and justice without constraint.
alexanderhamiltonAlexander Hamilton (January 11, 1755 or 1757 – July 12, 1804) was a founding father of the United States, chief staff aide to General George Washington, one of the most influential interpreters and promoters of the U.S. Constitution, the founder of the nation’s financial system, and the founder of the first political party.

As Secretary of the Treasury, Hamilton was the primary author of the economic policies of the George Washington administration, especially the funding of the states’ debts by the Federal government, the establishment of a national bank, a system of tariffs, and friendly trade relations with Britain. He became the leader of the Federalist Party, created largely in support of his views; he was opposed by the Democratic-Republican Party, led by Thomas Jefferson and James Madison.

Hamilton played a major role in the American Revolutionary War. At the start of the war in 1775, he organized an artillery company and was chosen as its captain. He later became the senior aide to General Washington, the American forces’ commander-in-chief. Washington sent him on numerous important missions to tell generals what Washington wanted. In 1798-99, Hamilton called for mobilization against France after the XYZ Affair and secured an appointment from President John Adams as commander of a new army, which he readied for war. However, the Quasi-War, while hard-fought at sea, was never officially declared and did not involve army action. In the end, Adams found a diplomatic solution which avoided a land war.

Born out of wedlock to a Scottish-French mother and raised in the West Indies, Hamilton was orphaned at about age 11. Recognized for his abilities and talent, he was sponsored by people from his community to go to North America for his education. He attended King’s College (now Columbia University), in colonial New York.[1] After the war, Hamilton was elected to the Congress of the Confederation from New York. He resigned, to practice law, and founded the Bank of New York.

Hamilton was among those dissatisfied with the Articles of Confederation—the first attempt at a national governing document—because it lacked an executive, courts, and taxing powers. He led the Annapolis Convention, which successfully influenced Congress to issue a call for the Philadelphia Convention, in order to create a new constitution. He was an active participant at Philadelphia; and he helped achieve ratification by the thirteen states, by writing 51 of the 85 installments of the The Federalist Papers, which supported the new constitution. To this day, The Federalist Papers are the single most important reference for Constitutional interpretation.[2]

In the new government under President George Washington, Hamilton was appointed the Secretary of the Treasury. An admirer of British political systems, Hamilton was a nationalist, who emphasized strong central government and successfully argued that the implied powers of the Constitution provided the legal authority to fund the national debt, assume states’ debts, and create the government-owned Bank of the United States. These programs were funded primarily by a tariff on imports, and later also by a highly controversial excise tax on whiskey.

Embarrassed when an extra-marital affair became public, Hamilton resigned his Cabinet position in 1795 and returned to the practice of law in New York. He kept his hand in politics and was a powerful influence on the Cabinet of President Adams (1797–1801). Hamilton’s opposition to Adams’ re-election helped cause his defeat in the 1800 election. When in the same contest, Thomas Jefferson and Aaron Burr tied for the presidency in the electoral college, Hamilton helped defeat Burr, whom he found unprincipled, and to elect Jefferson despite philosophical differences.

After failing to support Adams, the Federalist Party candidate, Hamilton lost some of his national prominence within the party. Vice President Burr later ran for governor in New York state, but Hamilton’s influence in his home state was strong enough to again prevent a Burr victory. Taking offense at some of Hamilton’s comments, Burr challenged him to a duel and mortally wounded Hamilton, who died the next day.

Constitution and The Federalist Papers

In 1787, Hamilton served as assemblyman from New York County in the New York State Legislature and was the first delegate chosen to the Constitutional Convention. Even though Hamilton had been a leader in calling for a new Constitutional Convention, his direct influence at the Convention itself was quite limited. Governor George Clinton‘s faction in the New York legislature had chosen New York’s other two delegates, John Lansing and Robert Yates, and both of them opposed Hamilton’s goal of a strong national government. Thus, whenever the other two members of the New York delegation were present, they decided New York’s vote; and when they left the convention in protest, Hamilton remained but with no vote, since two representatives were required for any state to cast a vote.

Alexander Hamilton

Legacy

Hamilton’s interpretations of the Constitution set forth in the Federalist Papers remain highly influential, as seen in scholarly studies and court decisions.[144]

From his first days as a cabinet member Hamilton set a precedent by formulating federal programs, writing them as reports, pushing for their approval by arguing for them in person on the floor of the United States Congress, and then implementing them. Hamilton and the other Cabinet members were vital to Washington, as there was no executive branch under the Articles of Confederation, and the Cabinet itself is unmentioned in the Constitution that succeeded it.

Read more:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexander_Hamilton

US Constitution Series 13: American Safety from Human Corruption

US Constitution should Provide Safety for Americans from Corruption in their Leaders

keyPower corrupts. Absolute power corrupts absolutely. ~Edmund Burke

The Founders’ Basic Principles: 28 Great Ideas that changed the world
5000leapThe practical application of this book review of Skousen’s educated wisdom is to leverage “We, The People’s” knowledge to easily expose ignorance, anarchy and tyranny, and hold the government accountable.
From The 5,000 Year Leap—A Miracle that Changed the World By W. Cleon Skousen

US Constitution Series 13: The Constitution should protect the people from the human frailties of their rulers

 

Distrust of Power Not Necessarily Disrespect For Leaders

The Founders had more confidence in the people than they did in the leaders of the people, especially trusted leaders, even themselves. They felt the greatest danger arises when a leader is so completely trusted that the people feel no anxiety to watch him.

alexanderhamiltonAlexander Hamilton:

For it is a truth, which the experience of all ages has attested, that the people are commonly most in danger when the means of injuring their rights are in the possession of those [toward] whom they entertain the least suspicion. (Federalist Papers, No. 25, p.164)

Every unconstitutional action has usually been justified because it was for a “good cause.” Every illegal transfer of power from one department to another has been excused as “necessary.”

jeffersontyrannygovThomas Jefferson

In questions of power, then, let no more be said of confidence in man, BUT BIND HIM DOWN FROM MISCHIEF BY THE CHAINS OF THE CONSTITUTION. (emphasis added) Skousen, 164

George Washington

George WashingtonGovernment is not reason, it is not eloquence—it is force! Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master.

Leaders Are Not Angels, But Fragile Human Beings

James Madison saw the problem of placing power in the hands of fallible human beins who, by nature, contain a complexity of elements reflecting both good and evil. the purpose of a constitution is to define the area in which a public official can serve to his utmost ability, but at the same time provide strict limitations to chain him down from mischief. In every human being there is a natural tendency to practice Parkinson’s law of perpetual expansion and to exercise personal proclivities toward ego-mania and self-aggrandizement. (Skousen, 165)

madisontyrannydefineJames Madison

It may be a reflection on human nature that such devices [as Constitutional chains] should be necessary to control the abuses of government. But what is government itself but the greatest of all reflections on human nature? … If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on government would be necessary.

I believe there are more instances of the abridgment of the freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments of those in power, than by violent and sudden usurpations …This danger ought to be wisely guarded against.

Why the Original Constitution Will Never Be Obsolete

constitution2And that is what the Constitution is all about—providing freedom from abuse by those in authority. Anyone who says the American Constitution is obsolete just because social and economic conditions have changed does not understand the real genius of the Constitution. It was designed to control something which HAS NOT CHANGED AND WILL NOT CHANGE—NAMELY, HUMAN NATURE. (Skousen, 166)

Next—

Principle 14: Life and Liberty are Secure Only so Long as the Right to Property Is Secure

US Constitution Series 12: Democracy Attacks American Republic

 

U.S. Constitution Series 1: Founding Fathers and Cicero

U.S. Constitution Series 1:

Founding Fathers and Cicero

Cicero was born January 3, 106 B.C.

The Founders’ Basic Principles: 28 Great Ideas that changed the world

keyWorldly philosophies endeavor to blur the distinction between good and evil and eliminate accountability. However, the foundation of Natural Law (the law of the Creator) is the reality of good and evil. The U.S. Constitution was successful in creating a free and prosperous society because its foundation of Natural Law is based on moral accountability to a just God. ~C.A. Davidson

5000leapFrom The 5,000 Year Leap—A Miracle that Changed the World

By W. Cleon Skousen

1. First Principle: the Genius of Natural Law

(Notes from pp. 37-47)

What is Natural Law?

The Creator’s order of things is called Natural Law.

The only reliable basis for sound government and just human relations is Natural Law.

Cicero

Cicero cut through the political and philosophical errors of both Plato and Aristotle to discover the touchstone of good laws, sound government, and the long-range formula for happy human relations. (p.37) He was the only Roman political writer who has exercised enduring influence throughout the ages. He studied law in Rome and philosophy in Athens.

Cicero’s compelling honesty led him to conclude that once the reality of the Creator is clearly identified in the mind, the only intelligent approach to government, justice, and human relations is in terms of the laws which the Supreme Creator has already established.

In the Declaration of Independence Jefferson referred to the “laws of Nature and of Nature’s God.”

In Natural Law we are dealing with factors of absolute reality.

Since the Biblical God is the author of Natural Law, the first two great commandments indicated by Jesus Christ provide the standard for government and human relations.

Internal and External Government

Society cannot exist unless a controlling power upon will and appetite be placed somewhere, and the less of it there is within, the more there must be without. It is ordained in the eternal constitution of things, that men of intemperate minds cannot be free. ~Edmund Burke

1. The first great commandment is to love and honor God (the God of Israel).  The simplest way to honor God is to abide by the Ten Commandments. These provide moral absolutes, which if obeyed, build in us a strong internal government, or good moral character.

2. The second great commandment is to “love thy neighbor as thyself.” This commandment is based on love. When we serve our fellow man, we are serving God. Jesus taught that we should treat others as we would like to be treated. If we have strong internal government, (we discipline ourselves and do no harm to others, by our own choice), then there is little need for much external government, which forces people to obey the rules of civilization.  Internal government is based on love of God, ourselves, and our neighbors. External force is not based on love.

Legislation in Violation of God’s Natural Law is a Scourge to Humanity

All Law Should Be Measured against God’s Law

ciceroCicero set forth the means by which people may discern between good and evil laws. All laws must be measured by God’s Law, which he described as follows:

Therefore Law [of the Creator] is the distinction between things just and unjust, made in agreement with that primal and most ancient of all things, Nature; and in conformity to Nature’s standard are framed those human laws which inflict punishment upon the wicked and protect the good. (Dr. William Ebenstein, Great Political Thinkers, p. 135)

It was clear to Cicero as he came toward the close of his life that men must eliminate the depravity that had lodged itself in society. He felt they must return to the high road of Natural Law. They must pledge obedience to the mandates of a loving and concerned Creator. (Skousen, pp. 45-46)

The Following are Examples of concepts based on Natural Law

  • Unalienable rights
  • Unalienable duties
  • Habeas Corpus
  • Limited government
  • Separation of powers
  • Checks and balances to correct abuses by peaceful means
  • Right of contract
  • Laws protecting the family and the institution of marriage
  • Justice by reparation or paying for damages
  • Right to bear arms
  • No taxation without representation

Principle # 2:  Moral and Virtuous Leaders

Constitutional Law: Constitution Article 3 vs. Judicial Tyranny

Constitutional Law:

American Thinker

Constitution Article 3 vs. Judicial Tyranny

Judicial Tyranny and What to Do about It

By Jon N. Hall, American Thinker

 

What can be done to rein in a runaway federal Judiciary?

It is thought that the only way to deal with misbehaving judges is impeachment. Impeachment is a difficult means of dealing with rogue federal judges, and it may be even more difficult once the House is taken over by Democrats in January. In 2006, however, the Yale Law Journal ran “Removing Federal Judges without Impeachment” by Saikrishna Prakash and Steven D. Smith, who argue that judges can be removed through other means than impeachment.  They examine the history of the term “good behavior,” as required by the second sentence of Article III:

Those who think judges may only be removed by impeachment might suppose that history reveals that “good Behaviour” was a term of art that meant something like “tenure for life defeasible only by impeachment.”  History actually proves that good behavior was independent of impeachment.

It doesn’t seem right that one person in one branch of government can summarily stop the activities of another branch of government.  Something needs to be done.  But if impeachment is too much, then what’s to be done about these lower-court judges throwing monkey wrenches into the executive?  At the very least, appeals of these injunctions need to be greatly expedited.

Article III of the U.S. Constitution outlines the role of the Judiciary in our system.  It’s rather shorter than the first two articles, as it consists of 377 words and can easily fit on a single page.  In the first sentence of Article III, we read that the “judicial power of the United States, shall be vested in one Supreme Court, and in such inferior courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish.”

Article III gives Congress the authority to create and to destroy “inferior courts.”  

Article III gives Congress the authority to create and to destroy “inferior courts.”  During our entire history, such federal courts have been abolished only twice.  There was the Judiciary Act of 1801 that backed out the “midnight judges” of President Adams.  Then there was the short-lived Commerce Court in 1913.

Except for the Supreme Court, it would seem that Article III gives the Congress carte blanche to abolish the entire federal judiciary.

If such a radical reorg of the judiciary seems “a bridge too far” right now, then perhaps Congress could abolish just the Ninth Circuit – just to send a message.

American Thinker: The Tyranny of the Judiciary and What to Do about It

Inoculate your Children against Socialism and Atheism HERE

US Constitution Series 12: Democracy Attacks American Republic

US Constitution Series 12: The United States of America shall be a Republic

There are many reasons why the Founders wanted a republican form of government rather than a democracy.

IMPORTANT: See Republic and Democracy Defined—Read this First

democracyjeffersonThe Founders’ Basic Principles: 28 Great Ideas that changed the world

The practical application of this book review of Skousen’s educated wisdom is to leverage “We, The People’s” knowledge to easily expose ignorance, anarchy and tyranny, and hold the government accountable.

 

From The 5,000 Year Leap—A Miracle that Changed the World

By W. Cleon Skousen

How the American Constitutional Republic became known as a Democracy

Modern Emphasis on “Democracy”

In spite of efforts to clarify the difference between a democracy and a republic, the United States began to be consistently identified in both the press and the school books as a “democracy.”This transformation of our Constitutional republic into a “Democracy” began with the Progressives in the early 20th century. President Wilson, a leader in the Progressive movement, helped contribute to this confusion when he identified World War I as the effort to “make the world safe for democracy.” ~Skousen, 158

 

Socialists use a Front Group to mask their true purpose

Definition: (A Front Group is an organization that uses a false name to deceive people about their true purpose)

Two leftists, Harry Laidler and Norman Thomas, set up an organization called the Intercollegiate Socialist Society. (ISS)They spoke at campuses from coast to coast, calling America a democracy. The ISS adopted a snappy (socialist)slogan for the times: “Production for use, not for profit.”

By 1921, with the violence and brutality associated with the Communist revolution, “socialism” became repugnant to people. So ISS changed their name to “The League for Industrial DEMOCRACY.”

 

“Democracy” Loses Its Identification with Socialism

Following World War II, an interesting semantic transition began to take place in the American mind with reference to the use of the word “democracy.”

To begin with, the Communists, the National Socialists of Germany, and the Democratic Socialists throughout the rest of Europe had all misused the word “democracy” to the point where it had become virtually meaningless as a descriptive term. As a euphemism for socialism, the word had become totally innocuous.

The word “democracy” used to cover up the abject worldwide failure of “socialism”

obamaSocialistDemWOrkersPartyFurthermore, socialism, whether spelled with a capital or small “s”, had lost its luster. All over the world, socialist nations—both democratic and communistic—were drifting into deep trouble. All of them were verging on economic collapse in spite of tens of billions of dollars provided by the United States to prop them up. Some had acquired a notorious and abhorrent reputation because of the violence, torture, starvation, and concentration-camp tactics they had used against their own civilian population. All over the world, socialism had begun to emerge as an abject failure formula. To the extent it was tried in America (without ever being called “socialism”), it had created colossal problems which the Founding Fathers’ formula would have avoided. (Skousen, 160)

 

The Attack on the Constitution

With the preceding historical picture in mind, it will be readily appreciated that the introduction of the word “democracy (to describe the United States) was actually designed as an attack on the Constitutional structure of government and the basic rights it was designed to protect.

signers3As Samuel Adams pointed out, the Founders had tried to make socialism “unconstitutional.” Therefore, to adopt socialism, respect and support for traditional constitutionalism had to be eroded and then emasculated. In view of this fact, it should not surprise the student of history to discover that those who wanted to have “democracy” identified with the American system were also anxious to have Americans believe their traditional Constitution was outdated, perhaps totally obsolete. (Skousen, 160)

 

Next: Principle 13

A Constitution should be Structured to Permanently Protect the People from the Human Frailties of their Rulers.

US Constitution Series 11: Liberty of the People vs. Government Force

 

Political Cartoon: Acosta, CNN and Trump

Political Cartoon:

Acosta, CNN and Trump

Freedom of Screech

Self-serving obnoxious cry-bully Jim Acosta has got his press pass back but may have damaged Journalism in the process. Political Cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2018.

See more Legal Insurrection Branco cartoons, click here.

Acosta Has No Constitutional Right to a White House Pass

Nov 17, 2018 01:00 am
Revoking Acosta’s press pass did not threaten the First Amendment rights of either CNN or Jim Acosta.

Judeo-Christian Culture: Free Will and Religious Freedom

Judeo-Christian Culture:

Free Will and Religious Freedom

Is religious liberty for everyone?

The Religion then of every man must be left to the conviction and conscience of every man; and it is the right of every man to exercise it as these may dictate. This right is in its nature an unalienable right.

Ed Vitagliano

November 2018 – It has been observed that, in the Bill of Rights, religious liberty is literally the “first freedom.” Of the five rights listed in the First Amendment, religious liberty is listed first. The wording is simple, yet sublime: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof. …”

With growing controversies over immigrants and refugees entering the U.S., both legally and illegally, Christians have struggled to answer this question: Does this first constitutional freedom apply to religions other than Christianity? There are good reasons to answer yes.

A right to disobey?


Most Christians are probably happy to include religious freedom among the collection of “natural” rights in the Declaration of Independence, rights that are according to “the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God.” In one of the most well known sentences in the English language, author Thomas Jefferson famously stated:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.

Ironically, this creates something of a paradox for the Christian who is loyal to God. On the one hand, the believer sees religious liberty as something that allows the mission of the church to proceed unhindered by government opposition.

On the other hand, it would appear that the Christian is also saying the God of the Bible has granted to every person the “natural right” to worship a false god, a million gods, or even the devil himself.

Religious liberty for all?


However, the answer to the paradox explains why the founders instituted religious liberty in the first place. They understood religious liberty as something congruent to the biblical teaching of “free will.”*

That is to say:

(1) because God has granted people free will, they can decide for themselves what God, god, or gods they will serve;

(2) because they are free before God to worship whomever they choose, our Bill of Rights guarantees freedom safe from government coercion;

(3) because true Christian conversion requires a commitment of faith in Jesus Christ, allowing Christians to proselytize and allowing unbelievers to reject the gospel is actually the most biblical approach to take.

James Madison, one of the most influential Founding Fathers, said in his tract Memorial and Remonstrance Against Religious Assessments (1785):

The Religion then of every man must be left to the conviction and conscience of every man; and it is the right of every man to exercise it as these may dictate. This right is in its nature an unalienable right.

The trigger for Madison’s tract was a bill he opposed in the General Assembly of Virginia that would have created from the state treasury a subsidy for Christian preachers. At the time, many were warning that piety and religious observance in Virginia were waning. The solution: government should promote the gospel so the detrimental trends could be arrested.

Not only should government not prefer one religion over another, Madison argued. Religious freedom must be available to everyone. He said:

Who does not see that the same authority which can establish Christianity, in exclusion of all other Religions, may establish with the same ease any particular sect of Christians, in exclusion of all other Sects?

It is reasonable to argue that a freedom which one Christian treasures for himself might also be a freedom that another Christian – or even a pagan – might equally treasure.

Coerced to become Christian?
It seems axiomatic for evangelicals today to assert that one can be forced to become a Christian. True, a person can be coerced to confess with his mouth that Jesus is Lord – or to demonstrate any number of outward signs of “conversion.” But Paul makes clear in Romans 10:10 that authentic outward expression must accompany faith in the heart for there to be true salvation.

Madison asserts that this is precisely why religious liberty must be granted to all:

James Madison

Whilst we assert for ourselves a freedom to embrace, to profess, and to observe the Religion which we believe to be of divine origin, we cannot deny an equal freedom to those whose minds have not yet yielded to the evidence which has convinced us. If this freedom be abused, it is an offence against God, not against man. …

Thus, the rebel who rejects the gospel is answerable to God; he is not and should not be answerable to the state for that rejection.

Moreover, the state cannot do what only the church, through Christ, can do – produce true converts. If the state attempts to empower government “magistrates” to coerce Christian conversion, Madison said, it becomes “an unhallowed perversion of the means of salvation.”

Against the darkness
It’s important to recognize that Madison is not arguing against Christians “voting their values.” Instead, he is declaring that government must not officially – and thus with coercive power – promote one religious view over another.

The Judeo-Christian worldview is part of the foundation of America. We should seek to convince our fellow citizens that the only way for our society to thrive is for Christian principles to be the bedrock of civic and cultural life.

In fact, it is quite biblical for Christians to warn non-believing Americans that God blesses nations for doing right in His sight and judges nations for committing evil (Jeremiah 18:7-10).

Followers of Christ are called to be salt and light (Matthew 5:13-16), and it is no exaggeration to state that, without that cultural influence, decay and darkness will ultimately triumph.

Nevertheless, while it is important for Christians to protect and promote religious liberty, both for themselves and for those with whom they disagree, it is equally important to remember that followers of Christ should not help false religions with their work. For example, they should not aid in the construction of Muslim mosques or otherwise contribute to the spread of Islam.

We believe that God has spoken through Jesus Christ (Hebrews 1:1-2), and those who deny this are of “the spirit of error” and “the spirit of the antichrist” (1 John 4:1-6). New Testament writers were severe when warning against cooperating with false religions. In 2 John 10-11, the apostle emphasizes that false teachers should be neither welcomed nor aided:

If anyone comes to you and does not bring this [gospel] teaching, do not receive him into your house, and do not give him a greeting; for the one who gives him a greeting participates in his evil deeds.

Whether all earthly freedoms are granted to us or are denied, the Christian’s first allegiance is to Christ the King and His kingdom.

*For those who point to Scriptures such as John 3:1-8 and conclude that sinners are free to choose Christ only as the Holy Spirit changes their heart, this substitute might be preferable: For those who are granted the grace to become born again, religious liberty is a blessing that allows men and women to follow that conversion impulse with minimal hindrance from the government.

____________________
For more studies on freedom of religion in the U.S., consider The Bible: America’s Source of Law and Liberty, America’s Providential History, and other books and video resources by Stephen McDowell. Founder of Providence Foundation, McDowell is a highly esteemed historian who chronicles the nation’s Christian roots. Visit providencefoundation.com or call 434-978-4535 for more information.

Ann Coulter: Birthright Citizenship History vs. Media Bias News

Ann Coulter:

Birthright Citizenship History vs. Media Bias News

It’s often said that journalism is the first draft of history. As we now we see, fake news is the first draft of fake history.

 The True History of Millstone Babies

The all-star panels rush to Wikipedia, so they can pretend to be experts on things they knew nothing about an hour earlier.

Such is the case today with “anchor babies” and “birthright citizenship.” People who know zilch about the history of the 14th Amendment are pontificating magnificently and completely falsely on the issue du jour.

If you’d like to be the smartest person at your next cocktail party by knowing the truth about the 14th Amendment, this is the column for you!

Of course the president can end the citizenship of “anchor babies” by executive order — for the simple reason that no Supreme Court or U.S. Congress has ever conferred such a right.

It’s just something everyone believes to be true.

How could anyone — even a not-very-bright person — imagine that granting citizenship to the children of illegal aliens is actually in our Constitution?

The first question would be: Why would they do that? It’s like being accused of robbing a homeless person. WHY WOULD I?

The Supreme Court has stated — repeatedly! — that the “main object” of the citizenship clause of the 14th Amendment “was to settle the question … as to the citizenship of free Negroes,” making them “citizens of the United States and of the state in which they reside.”

Democrats, the entire media and House Speaker Paul Ryan seem to have forgotten the Civil War. They believe that, immediately after a war that ended slavery, Americans rose up as one and demanded that the children of illegals be granted citizenship!

You know what’s really bothering me? If someone comes into the country illegally and has a kid, that kid should be an American citizen!

YOU MEAN THAT’S NOT ALREADY IN THE CONSTITUTION?

Give me a scenario — just one scenario — where the post-Civil War amendments would be intended to grant citizenship to the kids of Chinese ladies flying to birthing hospitals in California, or pregnant Latin Americans sneaking across the border in the back of flatbed trucks.

You can make it up. It doesn’t have to be a true scenario. Any scenario!

As the court has explained again and again and again:

“(N)o one can fail to be impressed with the one pervading purpose found in (the 13th, 14th and 15th) amendments, lying at the foundation of each, and without which none of them would have been even suggested; we mean the freedom of the slave race, the security and firm establishment of that freedom, and the protection of the newly made freeman and citizen from the oppressions of those who had formerly exercised unlimited dominion over him.”

That’s why the amendment refers to people who are “subject to the jurisdiction” of the United States “and of the state wherein they reside.” For generations, African-Americans were domiciled in this country. The only reason they weren’t citizens was because of slavery, which the country had just fought a civil war to end.

The 14th Amendment fixed that.

Squanto and the miracle of Thanksgiving

The amendment didn’t even make Indians citizens. Why? Because it was about freed slaves. Sixteen years after the 14th Amendment was ratified, the Supreme Court held that an American Indian, John Elk, was not a citizen, despite having been born here.

Instead, Congress had to pass a separate law making Indians citizens, which it did, more than half a century after the adoption of the 14th Amendment. (It’s easy to miss — the law is titled: “THE INDIAN CITIZENSHIP ACT OF 1924.”) Why would such a law be necessary if simply being born in the U.S. was enough to confer citizenship?

Even today, the children of diplomats and foreign ministers are not granted citizenship on the basis of being born here.

President Trump, unlike his critics, honors black history by recognizing that the whole purpose of the Civil War amendments was to guarantee the rights of freed slaves.

But the left has always been bored with black people. If they start gassing on about “civil rights,” you can be sure it will be about transgenders, the abortion ladies or illegal aliens. Liberals can never seem to remember the people whose ancestors were brought here as slaves, i.e., the only reason we even have civil rights laws.

Still, it requires breathtaking audacity to use the Civil War amendments to bring in cheap foreign labor, which drives down the wages of African-Americans — the very people the amendments were written to protect!

Whether the children born to legal immigrants are citizens is controversial enough. But at least there’s a Supreme Court decision claiming that they are — U.S. v. Wong Kim Ark. That’s “birthright citizenship.”

It’s something else entirely to claim that an illegal alien, subject to deportation, can drop a baby and suddenly claim to be the parent of a “citizen.”

This crackpot notion was concocted by liberal zealot Justice William Brennan and slipped into a footnote as dicta in a 1982 case. “Dicta” means it was not the ruling of the court, just a random aside, with zero legal significance.

Left-wing activists seized on Brennan’s aside and browbeat everyone into believing that anchor babies are part of our great constitutional heritage, emerging straight from the pen of James Madison.

No Supreme Court has ever held that children born to illegal aliens are citizens. No Congress has deliberated and decided to grant that right. It’s a made-up right, grounded only in the smoke and mirrors around Justice Brennan’s 1982 footnote.

Obviously, it would be better if Congress passed a law clearly stating that children born to illegals are not citizens. (Trump won’t be president forever!) But until that happens, the president of the United States is not required to continue a ridiculous practice that has absolutely no basis in law.

See more Legal Insurrection Branco cartoons, click here.

It’s often said that journalism is the first draft of history. As we now we see, fake news is the first draft of fake history.

Ann Coulter: The True History of Millstone Babies

Anchor Baby Boom: More Born Every Year Than U.S. Births in 48 States

Birthright Citizenship: A Fundamental Misunderstanding of the 14th Amendment

C-SPAN Poll: How Americans Feel About Birthright Citizenship Might Shock You

 

 

US Constitution Series 11: Liberty of the People vs. Government Force

US Constitution Series 11:

The Majority of the People may Alter or Abolish a Government Which has Become Tyrannical

key“If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be.” ~Thomas Jefferson

It is important to note that our Constitutional republic does not need to be changed. Congress has 2 duties assigned to accomplish the restraint or removal of a tyrant: 1) impeachment 2) Using the power of the purse to withhold funding from tyrannical actions.

When Congress fails in its duties, the tenth amendment still gives power to the states and the people. We do not have a majority of Constitutionalists in Congress, and the majority of the voters lack the wisdom and understanding needed to fix this from Washington. Our best option is to keep our states sovereign, teach our families righteous principles so they can govern themselves, elect persons of character to all levels of government, and work in our communities at the grass roots level to rebuild our nation. ~C.A. Davidson

The Founders’ Basic Principles: 28 Great Ideas that changed the world

The practical application of this book review of Skousen’s educated wisdom is to leverage “We, The People’s” knowledge to easily expose ignorance, anarchy and tyranny, and hold the government accountable.

5000leapFrom The 5,000 Year Leap—A Miracle that Changed the World

By W. Cleon Skousen

The Founders were well acquainted with the vexations resulting from an abusive, autocratic government which had imposed injuries on the American colonists for thirteen years in violation of the English constitution. Thomas Jefferson’s word in the Declaration of Independence therefore emphasized the feelings of the American people when he wrote:

Prudence, indeed, will dictate that governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and, accordingly, all experience has shown, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.

But, when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object, evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security.

 

John Locke

Whensoever, therefore, the legislative shall transgress this fundamental rule of society, and either by ambition, fear, folly, or corruption, endeavor to grasp themselves, or put into the hands of any other, an absolute power over the lives, liberties, and estates of the people, by this breach of trust they [the government officials] forfeit the power the people had put into their hands …and it devolves to the people, who have a reight to resume their original liberty, and provide for their own safety and security. (Second Essay Concerning Civil Government, pp. 75-76, emphasis added.)

Power Rests in the Majority

However, it is important to recognize that the “government” was established by the Majority of the people, and only a majority of the people can authorize an appeal to alter or abolish a particular establishment of government. (Skousen, 149)

No Right of Revolt in a Minority

When the Founders altered the British government, they got the consensus of the majority of the American people. The abuses of Americans were perpetrated by a minority—the British monarchy. Comparing this history to today, we have abuses heaped upon us again by a minority—Obama and his army of unelected bureaucrats. ~C.D.

. . .it [is] impossible for one or a few oppressed men to disturb the government where the body of the people do not think themselves concerned in it …

johnlockeBut if either these illegal acts have extended to the MAJORITY of the people, or if the mischief and oppression has light [struck] only on some few, but in such cases as the precedent and consequences seem to THREATEN ALL, and they are persuaded in their consciences that their laws, and with them, their estates, liberties, and lives are in danger, and perhaps their religion too, HOW THEY WILL BE HINDERED FROM RESISTING ILLEGAL FORCE USED AGAINST THEM, I cannot tell. (John Locke, Ibid., p. 73 208-9; emphasis added.)

Virginia Declaration of Rights

Our best option is to keep our states sovereign, teach our families righteous principles so they can govern themselves, elect persons of character to all levels of government, and work in our communities at the grass roots level to rebuild our nation.

That government is, or ought to be, instituted for the common benefit, protection, and security of the people …And that, when any government shall be MAJORITY of the community hath an indubitable, inalienable, and indefeasible right to reform, alter, or abolish it, in such manner as shall be judged most conducive to the public weal. (Annals of America, 2:432; emphasis added.)

So, granted that the people are sovereign and the majority of them can take over whenever necessary to restructure the political machinery and restore liberty, what is likely to be the best form of government which will preserve liberty? The answer to this question was a favorite theme of the American nation-builders.

NEXT:

Principle 12: The United States of America Shall be a Republic

US Constitution Series 10: God and People vs. Government Control