I was honored to speak before the National Committee of the Constitution Party on Thursday, October 25, 2007 in Council Bluffs, Iowa. Today's column is a condensed version of that address.
Daniel Webster is regarded as perhaps America's most notable jurist. Webster said,
"Hold on, my friends, to the Constitution and to the Republic for which it stands. Miracles do not cluster, and what has happened once in 6000 years may not happen again. Hold on to the Constitution, for if the American Constitution should fail, there will be anarchy throughout the world."
Please remember that this is the same Daniel Webster who said:
"If we abide by the principles taught in the Bible, our country will go on prospering and to prosper; but if we and our posterity neglect its instruction and authority, no man can tell how sudden a catastrophe may overwhelm us and bury all our glory in profound obscurity."
You see how Daniel Webster (like most of America's founders) was a man with deeply-held Christian convictions. He believed the Bible. He was a devout believer. And he found no contradictions between the Bible and the Constitution. In fact, he believed (as do I) that the Constitution is the best safeguard for Christian liberty that we have.
When any constitutionally-elected officeholder assumes office, he or she promises to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States. They don't promise to represent "conservative principles" or to be "loyal to a political party," etc. The Constitution is the contract between "We the people" and our civil magistrates.
When you or I hire an electrician or plumber to do work for us, we sign a contract for specific work to be done. And at the end of the day, I really don't care whether he claims to be a Christian or where he goes to church or how religious he claims to be. When the work is finished, I want my lights to turn on and my toilet to flush. In other words, I expect him to live up to his contract.
When we elect people to public office, we should expect only one thing: that they uphold their contract to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States.
You see, adherence to the Constitution protects our freedom of speech and assembly; our freedom of worship; our right to keep and bear arms; our right to a trial by jury; the right to be secure in our own homes against police overreach; our right to witness for Christ in public, as a Christian; the right to own property; the right to not be deprived of life or property without due process of law; the right to face our accusers, and the right to keep government local and limited.
In fact, keeping government local and limited is the cornerstone doctrine of American government. In most nations, the federal government holds power over virtually every area of the lives of its people. Not so in America—at least, not in the America that was originally crafted.
Most of the problems that we are now dealing with socially, culturally, financially, etc., stem from America abandoning the basic founding principle that "the government that governs least governs best."
Accordingly, America's commitment to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness has been (and is being) systematically stripped from us—not by State legislatures, but mostly by agencies of the federal government.
Consider how it has been federal courts that have banned prayer in school, and legalized abortion and homosexual marriage. Even in the liberal State of Massachusetts it was the courts (along with a compliant liberal governor, Mitt Romney), that forced acceptance of homosexual marriage upon the people.
Today, we have federal departments and agencies almost without number. We have the Department of Education, the Department of Transportation, the Department of Energy, the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Agriculture, the Department of Commerce, the Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Department of Justice, the Department of Labor, the Department of State, the Department of the Treasury, the Department of the Interior, etc., etc., ad infinitum, ad nauseum.
Each and every federal department and agency, in its own way and for its own purposes, to one degree or another, ignores or violates constitutional government. And as a result, they contravene and strip away the rights and freedoms of States collectively and of the people individually.
The result of this gargantuan federal monstrosity includes back-breaking taxation and over-regulation, which fuel inflation, stymie productivity, and invite foreign influence.
One only has to observe how President Bush is now appealing to the U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of an illegal Mexican alien who raped and murdered two Houston, Texas teenagers, arguing that his death sentence should be overturned and that he should be given a new trial. Bush's reason? Illegal aliens should be under the authority of a UN "world court" instead of the State of Texas' authority.
Observe how Bush is pushing for amnesty for illegal aliens. See how he has merged these United States into a regional government by signing onto the Security and Prosperity Partnership agreement with Canada and Mexico. See how he is pushing for a NAFTA superhighway. Observe how he and other globalists are planning to replace the U.S. dollar with a regional, multinational currency called the Amero.
Furthermore, virtually every administration for the last fifty years has engaged in an aggressive nation-building foreign policy. (Can anyone say, "Iraq"?) In addition, in contradiction to the stated warnings of our nation's founders, they have actively pursued entangling alliances with unfriendly governments. The past three administrations in particular have deliberately steered our country down a path of multiculturalism, globalism, and elitism.
Pastors, especially, should fight for constitutional government! Do you preachers really think that there will be any room for the old-time Gospel when the globalists and elitists in the federal government have finished with their diabolical schemes?
Already, President Bush repeatedly tells us that Christians and Muslims—and all other religions—worship the same God. How long will you preachers be able to preach the narrow message of salvation, that Christ is the only way to Heaven, when Bush's doctrine of Universalism is the accepted religion? And make no mistake about it: Universalism is the national religion of the United Nations, the European Union, and the emerging North American Union.
The Department of Homeland Security is already holding seminars for pastors, instructing them how they should ask their congregants to turn in their firearms in the event that the President declares a national emergency. How many of you pastors are prepared to become an instrument of gun confiscation for global government?
This is what happens when we abandon constitutional government.
It is not enough that a candidate says he is a Christian. Every politician I know, or have ever known, says they are a Christian—at least every four years. It is not enough that a candidate carries a giant-print Bible to church. It is not enough that he says he prays or says that "faith is important."
The truth is, if the candidate is a sincere Christian, he or she will all the more readily obey his or her oath to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States. After all, does not our Lord tell us that our yea is to be yea and our nay is to be nay? In other words, genuine believers are to be true to their word. How, then, could a true Christian make a promise before God and the American people to preserve, protect, and defend the U.S. Constitution and then turn around and ignore that promise? He couldn't.
Therefore, a professing believer who is elected to public office and then ignores his or her promise to the Constitution proves that he or she is not a true Christian but a phony who only uses a religious testimony to dupe Christians.
Take the issue of abortion, for example. Ron Paul proposed the "Sanctity of Life Act of 2005" (and 2007), which would require that "human life shall be deemed to exist from conception, without regard to race, sex, age, health, defect, or condition of dependency"
The bill also provides that "the Congress recognizes that each State has the authority to protect unborn children..." And that "the Supreme Court shall not have jurisdiction to review ...the performance of abortions; or the provision of public expenses of funds, facilities, personnel, or other assistance for the performance of abortions."
In other words, Dr. Paul understands that Article. III. Section. 2. of the U.S. Constitution gives to Congress the authority to rein in an abusive judiciary and take the issue of abortion (or homosexual marriage or fill in the blank) out from under the jurisdiction of the Court. This means that should Congressman Paul's bill become law, abortion on demand ends and Roe v Wade is overturned.
So, please tell me why, after having control of both houses of Congress and the White House for six years, did these "pro-life" Republicans in Congress and a "pro-life" President not pass Dr. Paul's bill? Why? Because they really do not give a hoot about abortion, but only use pro-life rhetoric to dupe conservative voters.
In addition, those conservatives who have followed President Bush's preemptive war doctrine are the ones who have abandoned historical conservative principles. Before G.W. Bush changed the landscape, conservatives—especially Christian conservatives—mostly subscribed to Augustine's "just war" theory regarding accepted protocols for the conduct of war. Today, however, many professing conservatives have foolishly followed Bush's "preemptive war" theory, which, before now, was practiced mostly by pagan emperors. As Christians, however, we should still subscribe to "just war."
In concert with "just war" philosophy (not to mention American history), Christians should agree with Ron Paul's approach to dealing with terrorists. He authored H.R. 3076, the September 11 Marque and Reprisal Act of 2001. According to Paul, "A letter of marque and reprisal is a constitutional tool specifically designed to give the president the authority to respond with appropriate force to those non-state actors who wage war against the United States while limiting his authority to only those responsible for the atrocities of that day. Such a limited authorization is consistent with the doctrine of just war and the practical aim of keeping Americans safe while minimizing the costs in blood and treasure of waging such an operation."
This is precisely what President Thomas Jefferson did when America's ships were confronted with Barbary pirates on the high seas.
If the United States government had listened to Ron Paul, we would not have lost nearly 4,000 American soldiers and Marines, spent over $1 trillion, and gotten bogged down in an endless civil war from which there is no equitable extraction. Furthermore, had we listened to Dr. Paul, Osama bin Laden would no doubt be dead, as would most of his al-Qaeda operatives, and we would be less vulnerable to future terrorist attacks, instead of being more vulnerable, which is the case today.
How can anyone say with a straight face that they are fighting a war on terrorism while at the same time doing absolutely nothing to secure our borders and ports?!
I submit that every true American, especially conservative Christians, should enthusiastically support constitutional government. I further believe that a President who would take his oath to the Constitution seriously would bring a new birth of freedom to America the likes of which has not been seen since 1776. May God give us such a man!