Pastor Roger Anghis
November 25, 2012
We have seen our constitutional rights be little by little be either restricted or removed entirely. During the last 4 years we have seen our president, elected to represent the people of America and uphold the Constitution and the laws of this land, ignore his oath and rule a s a dictator removing our rights to liberties that our Founders fought and died for.
We will see more of our rights removed and made void during the next four years because the party that has control of the Senate and the White House have no regard for the document that has made America the envy of the world.
Over the years we have seen our Constitution redefined by the Democrat Party to suit their idea of what America should be. Our Founders believed in personal responsibility and for the right of the individual to prosper as he saw fit. The Democrat Party believes that the common person needs to be taken care of by the government from cradle to grave. The major changes began during the administration of Franklin D. Roosevelt. Despite his claim to the contrary Roosevelt was a socialist to the core. His appointments of the Supreme Court show his socialist tendencies. Many of his programs to ‘create jobs’ were overturned by the Court because they did not fall into the constitutional authority of the federal government. He believed that it was the government that created jobs, just as our current president believes. In his years before WW II he was a total failure and his economic advisor even stated that all the spending Roosevelt did had only made the situation worse.
I would like to concentrate this column on what has happened to our First Amendment rights over the years. The First Amendment reads: Congress shall make no law respecting the establishing of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof: or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or the right of the people to peaceably assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.
This Amendment was redefined to mean the exact opposite of what its intent had been mean to understand for the first 156 years of its existence in 1947 in the Everson v. Board of Education Supreme Court case. In my book, Defining America’s Exceptionalism I explained what happened to our First Amendment because of that case: The Everson vs. Board of Education is an important case as it was the case that completely redefined the First Amendment. In David Barton’s book Original Intent, he effectively describes the results of this case: “The question of what the Founders intended as the proper relationship between religious expressions and “public” life (whether in education, law, government, or throughout society in general) is clearly documented in their numerous writings on the subject. Those records establish their intent and thus clarify their two references to religion in the Constitution.
The first reference is in Article VI, Section 3:
[No] religious test shall ever be acquired as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States.
The second is in the First Amendment:
Congress shall make no law respecting the establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof. . .
Through the years, these two constitutional requirements have formed the basis of many judicial decisions. Historically, legal scholars have examined both phrases when seeking the intent of the either; the understanding of each was made more complete through examination of both.12 The goal was always to identify and establish the original context and purpose of those two religious provisos before attempting to apply them.
However, in Everson (1947) the modern Court discarded this objective. It first divorced the First Amendment from its original purpose and then reinterpreted it without regard to either historical context or previous judicial decisions. The result was that the Court abandoned the traditional constitutional meaning of “religion” as a single denomination or system of worship and instead substituted a new “modern” concept which even now remains vague and the Court created a new and foreign purpose for the First Amendment and completely rewrote its scope of protections and prohibitions.”13
From this case we see a complete turnaround concerning the meaning of the First Amendment. This new ‘meaning’ is almost the opposite of what the Founders established. If you ask “How do we know this?” it is simple. The Founders did everyday what the Court today says is unconstitutional. This 1947 misinterpretation has been a cancer to our Constitution and to our rights. At this point I feel that we need to look at historical evidence of the religious grounding of the Founding Fathers. There is a term used in the courts that describes admissible evidence and that term is ‘organic utterances’. This consists of the bulk of historical documents and previous legal rulings which makes up what is known as ‘common law’. We will look at some of these ‘organic utterances’ and see if the Founders were as un-religious as the Courts have declared.
Because of this attack on the meaning of the First Amendment and the complete redefinition of its meaning the Court has used that case to systematically chip away at all of the provisions of the First Amendment. The Everson case set the ground work to remove prayer from schools, the Bible from schools and virtually all other public arenas. The removal of the Ten Commandments from all public buildings has helped keep our religious heritage from the eyes of our children. One has to question these Court decisions all of our public buildings in Washington, D.C. have biblical references carved in their stone walls. On the doors of the Supreme Court even have the Ten Commandments carved into backs of the doors so that when the doors are closed during the session, the jurists would always have the foundation of our laws before their eyes. These actions of the Court have restricted our “freedom of religion and the free exercise thereof”. The Bible was the book for teaching in our schools from the 1600’s until the early 20th century. The Everson case made that illegal. Thomas Jefferson stated that the history of our nation should be taught to our children at the earliest of age so that it will never be forgotten. To teach the Christian faith of our Founders has been deemed illegal because, well, it ‘establishes’ a religion and that is illegal. It is now illegal to teach the true history of America.
Another aspect of the Frist Amendment’s religious freedom is the ‘free exercise thereof’ of our religion. That means we have the right to practice our faith as we see fit. Our current president has denied this right to all American’s through his so-called Affordable Healthcare Act. Even though most of Americans are against abortions this ungodly piece of legislation requires that all participate in the murder of the unborn. That is a violation of our religious principles yet the man elected to protect those rights is denying us those rights.
Even the right to petition our government is being attacked. Since the last election there have been petitions from all States to secede from the union because of the massive voter fraud that won the election for our current president and on the White House website there is a threat to have the citizenship of anyone that signs a secession petition revoked.
It is the philosophy of a Marxist/communist to remove individual freedoms for the ‘good of the state’. Obama has no use for our Constitution or our Bill or Rights because it puts limits on government and keeps the power in the hands of the people. Our job is to maintain the rights garnered for us by the Founders so we can pass those rights to our children as the Founders did to their children.
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To do that we have to elect men and women who love America and will defend our Constitution. For the last two presidential elections we have failed to do that. Our only hope to keep America from complete collapse is the prayers of the Body of Christ and the House of Representatives which is controlled by the Republicans. Between those two sources, prayer being the most effective, we can keep America from destruction.
Volumes could be written concerning how our rights are being taken away and they will be written. We are told in scripture to occupy until He comes and that means to continue to fight the good fight of faith. No power can overcome those who know who they serve. Who will you serve? As for me and my house, we shall serve the Lord.
© 2012 Roger Anghis - All Rights Reserved
Pastor Roger Anghis is the Founder of RestoreFreeSpeech.org, an organization designed to draw attention to the need of returning free speech rights to churches that was restricted in 1954.
President of The Damascus Project, TheDamascusProject.org, which has a stated purpose of teaching pastors and lay people the need of the churches involvement in the political arena and to teach the historical role of Christianity in the politics of the United States. Married-37 years, 3 children, three grandchildren.
Web site: RestoreFreeSpeech.org