Freedom and our Constitution are on the 2020 ballot because you can't have one without the other. We are the freest people on the planet, and for the longest time, because of the U.S. Constitution. No governing document has harnessed those who govern us more fully or better than this document.
This is so because it is based upon natural inalienable rights coming from God. It cannot be understood fully without viewing it as an extension of the Declaration of Independence in which God was referenced five times. The document authorized our right to rebel from tyranny and, with victory, we constructed a document ensuring government tyranny could never return. This inspired document gave Americans freedom from excessive government. Yes, it took a war and some time to make freedom apply to everyone, but we succeeded.
Freedom is always on the ballot but more so now than at any other time. This column does not name parties or persons because these are stumbling blocks to some but is asking Americans to consider what we have before voting to lose it.
The Second Amendment, "a well-regulated militia," (the people are the militia then and today), such "being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed." No other amendment uses these last four words, which means off-limits to government. No city, county, state nor even the federal government can make any laws infringing on our inalienable right to protect ourself and our collective right to resist our own government should it defy constitutional government -- the same right used by our founders to resist the British government by force when it became tyrannical.
It is ironic that, in our day as anarchy reigns in our biggest cities, that these same cities elect to defund or disband those hired to protect us from violence, that gun sales automatically escalate. The major political parties are polar opposites on your right to self-defense. One presidential primary candidate stating, "Hell yes, were going to take your AR-15, your AK-47."
"Vote wisely, all other freedoms hinge on this one."
There are other areas in which "Congress shall make no law." The First Amendment specifically named: religion, speech, press, assembly and the right to petition the government for grievances. The prohibitions were extended to state governments also by the 14th Amendment.
But in 2020 it was in these areas that more rights of Americans were taken than in any other single year in U.S. History -- those who love freedom viewed the actions of some governors as dictatorial, even tyrannical.
The most violated of these were freedoms of assembly, religion, and press. With stay-at-home decrees, "peaceably to assemble" vanished -- unless you were rioting.
"Congress shall make no law, respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof."
One political party supported governors arbitrarily prohibiting religious gatherings, limiting the number of participants, and enforcing other provisions for their meetings during the Wuhan Virus Scare -- all unconstitutional. The other maintained that everything in life is a risk and left the assessment of risk, and its consequences, to parishioners, honoring the Constitution which prohibited any government involvement. The very definition of liberty is freedom from excessive government. One party wants government intervention in potentially every aspect of human life; the other thinks that the best government is the least government. This is called freedom.
Congress shall make no law abridging the "freedom of the press." Certainly, censorship of the press by the government is constitutionally forbidden but what about the government (Congress) allowing monopolies Google, Facebook, YouTube and Twitter exemption from lawsuits for their horrendous censorship practices. Only the views of one party are censored so it obviously objects. One party encourages the disclosure of information regarding candidates before a vote; the other endorses -- even practices censorship. Today big tech has more power over press issues than the federal government -- they are social media. Some data shows a marriage between big tech and one of the major political parties. When that party returns to power so does big tech.
Other issues divide the parties as well. One such is globalism vs. American independence. Our system of government is designed to problem solve from the bottom up, essentially never elevating to a higher level that which can be resolved at a lesser level. But there are many today who wish to problem solve from the top down -- even from the United Nations down. This notion has different and changing names: world government, internationalism, new world order, and now globalism. Globalists see nationalism as an enemy and seek to transfer decision making power to unelected international bureaucratic organizations. Today, one political party endorses globalism; the other American independence.
Until 2016, both parties failed to follow the Constitution as written, distorting sections when convenient. Today, the biggest divide of the political parties is over the Constitution itself: one party undermining it, distorting it at every turn, the other now seeking to adhere to it more strictly, "as written."
This election, the Constitution and liberty are clearly on the ballot, making it the most important in our history. We must retain what has been tried and proved. We must choose freedom over tyranny, the free market over socialism and the Constitution as written.
It would be wise to consider what we have before voting to lose it.
Harold W. Pease, Ph.D., is a syndicated columnist and an expert on the United States Constitution. He has dedicated his career to studying the writings of the Founding Fathers and applying that knowledge to current events. He taught history and political science from this perspective for more than 30 years at Taft College. To read more of his weekly articles, visit www.LibertyUnderFire.org. Opinions expressed are those of the author.