These letters express the opinions of these writers on the issues America today. But last Friday, while reading these letters, it dawned on me just how divided the country has become, even here in Cherokee County, and how important the First Amendment is to those writing these letters to the editor. It was then I asked myself: "Is political correctness replacing the First Amendment?" We hope not!
But when the White House declared open warfare on the Fox News network last week because they dare to "Question with Boldness" and air the speeches of the president's socialistic leaning czars, especially Anita Dunn's speech, President Barack Obama's White House director of communications, that openly declared her admiration for Mao Tse Tung, it caused me to again question the direction this administration is going. Mao murdered more than 50 million Chinese to gain control of China.
Ms. Dunn's speech frightened me, enough so that I reread the Constitution's First Amendment. It reads: "Congress shall make no law respecting the establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances." Four unalienable rights!
Again I asked: "How long will we as citizens be allowed to express our opinions openly in letters to the editor?" I become concerned when those who "peaceably assemble" to express their displeasure with the direction their country is going are attacked by their government as racists. Then, when I learn how ACORN employees are paid, often with tax money, to intimidate (some call it legalized blackmail) businesses and to register Donald Duck and Mickey Mouse as voters, my concerns grows. Now the Internet is under attack. The Founders didn't have this kind of government in mind when they signed the Constitution in 1787.
But of equal concern for me are the growing attacks on the very cornerstones of our liberty: morality and religion. That clause reads: "Congress shall make no law respecting the establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech." All nations who ever removed moral and religious truths from their society have fallen - shortly. Is America on that path? No one wants to even consider this horrible possibility.
George Washington, in his 1797 farewell address warned our generation with these words. "Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports; in vain would that man claim the tribute of patriotism, who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness, these firmest props of the duties of men and citizens ... Let it simply be asked, where is the security for property, for reputation, for life, if the sense of religious obligation desert the oaths which are the instrument of investigation in courts of justice? And let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion. What may be conceded to the influence of refined education ... reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principles." What would Washington think of today's secularized society? True then, true today!
Will the opponents of America's "unalienable" liberties win the day? They will unless "the people" stand up and fight back. Recently, I read the historical account of how a man, Amalickiah, wanted to become king and used "flatteries" to gain the support of "the greater part of the lower judges (who were) seeking for power" by promising to make them "rulers over the people."
The account described Amalickiah as "a man of cunning device and a man of many flattering words, (a man who) led away the hearts of many people to do wickedly; yea, and (sought) to destroy the church of God, and to destroy the foundation of liberty which God had granted unto them, the blessing [of liberty] God had sent upon the face of the land for the righteous' sake."
The author concluded with: "Thus we see how quick the children of men do forget the Lord their God, yea, how quick (they are) to do iniquity, and to be led away by the evil one. Yea, and we also see the great wickedness one very wicked man can cause to take place among the children of men."
The story ends by telling how Amalickiah's efforts to become king failed after the people rose up and drove him from the country after creating a covenant amongst themselves, symbolized by a flag they called their "Title of Liberty" (their Liberty Bell) on which they wrote: "In memory of our God, our religion, and freedom, and our peace, our wives, and our children."
When righteous people rule liberty reigns, but "when the wicked rule, the people mourn."
Donald Conkey, a retired agricultural economist, lives in Woodstock.