I don’t watch the news, but I read plenty of it online. I listen to plenty of talk radio. I know Greece is on fire, and I know why. I also know that most of the rest of Europe is teetering.
More locally, I see the insanity of our porous Southern Border, and wonder why it took Arizona so long to pass the immigration bill that it did. Further, I am absolutely outraged that they HAD to pass that bill, but I know why they did.
I hear our President saying things like, “information becomes a distraction, a diversion, a form of entertainment…It is putting new pressures on our country and on our democracy.” I read about Nancy Pelosi telling Catholic Bishops what to say: “The people, some (who) oppose immigration reform, are sitting in those pews, and you have to tell them that this is a manifestation of our living the gospels.” (Really? Ms. Pelosi, can you show me just where the Gospels cover immigration policy?)
Even with my limited knowledge of the Constitution, I know that many of the things that our leaders are saying and doing are in direct violation of the Constitution. Need proof?
Start with the most obvious, and easiest to define, the Arizona Immigration Bill. It never should have been passed. Not because I disagree with it, think it’s racist, or that it promotes “racial profiling”. No. It never should have been passed, because it shouldn’t have HAD to be passed. Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution says, “Congress shall have the power to…provide for the Common Defence (sic) of the United States…” That means that it is CONGRESSES job, not Arizona’s, to protect our Southern Border from invasion. Unfortunately, Congress is fiddling while Arizona burns, so Arizona had to take the battle into their own hands.
Second, the comment made by Mrs. Pelosi. It doesn’t directly violate the Constitution, but, in light of other arguments of the day, such as not allowing children to pray or read the Bible in school… her words are ominous. How does she get the right to dictate to Catholic Bishops what they should preach from the pulpit? Article 1 of the Constitution says, in part, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or preventing the free exercise thereof…” Perhaps she’s not establishing a religion, but, by telling Bishops what to say, she sure is preventing the free exercise of that religion. If you are told what to do, you are no longer “free”.
The next one is not so easy, but can still be given a ‘constitutional test’. Mr. Obama says that ‘information is a diversion’. How so? Since when is it a ‘diversion’ to have more information available? Is it not our right, prerogative, and obligation to sort that information for ourselves and determine, from that vast font available, what is the truth? And what does it have to do with the Constitution? Article 1 again: “Congress shall make no law…abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press…” Are Obama’s words abridging our freedom of speech, or the press? Not yet. But he’s put forward the idea that there is “too much information” being bandied about, and that it is a “distraction” that is “putting new pressures on our country…” In a weird coincidence, Congress is tossing about the idea of ‘net neutrality’, many Congress Critters are big fans of reinstating the ‘Fairness Doctrine’, and there has been talk of placing the FCC in ‘control’ of the internet. Speculation – and yes, it is speculation – runs the gamut about the institution of these things… everything from providing broadband internet access to every home in America to controlling the content of the internet, including requiring EVERY SITE to provide an alternate view to whatever it is that they are presenting. (a simple example would be… for opinion that Rush Limbaugh puts forward, he would have to provide a link to an opposing opinion)
So what is the point of all of this paranoid rambling?
To convince you to read the Constitution. There are many ways to do it.
- You can find it online here: US Constitution Online or here Western Kentucky University or here National Constitution Center (that page has a printable version)
- You can order a free, pocket-sized copy from Heritage Foundation (I have one. they’re nice)
- You can go to your local library and find a copy – they might still have them there.
When you’re done, when you’ve read the Constitution, feel good that you have started (or are continuing) to be a more informed citizen of your country. And then, pass it on. Encourage your friends, family and neighbors to read it. Encourage your Liberal/Progressive friends to read it before they try to convince you that whatever the issue of the day is the right thing to do. Maybe it is. Maybe it isn’t. But the Constitution is a really good place to start. You’ll notice that there is a little tag over on the right hand side of our blog. It’s there because I’ve read the Constitution. I encourage you to do the same. You can find the little blog-tags here.
Read it. Pass it on. I did.