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BREAKING NEWS

What they fought against

EDITOR:

This is about the First Amendment, the ACLU, and the FFRF.

“Congress shall make no law respecting an 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.”

This is very plain English, although it has been so severely misinterpreted by the Supreme Court of the United States and various anti-religion groups that one might think it had been written in Middle English.

Despite what most lawyers would have you believe, you do not need to be a Constitutional lawyer to understand the Constitution and Bill of Rights. It’s all the gobbledygook that has been written since that requires a law degree, and even then I doubt the lawyers really understand it.

Let’s analyze the First Amendment by each of its six rights. “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion.” This clearly reads that Congress may not make any laws either in favor of nor against any religion. That is the separation of church and state. Without laws, there is nothing for the executive branch to execute, and nothing for the judicial branch to judge. The First Amendment does not in any way read that there may be no religious activities or symbols present on federal or state premises. The mere presence of religious activities or symbols does not constitute an endorsement by the government. It merely supports the second (and fifth) right listed in this Amendment.

Consider also that “government property” belongs to the citizens of the United States, by definition, and should not be restricted from any use by these citizens that does not cause physical damage to the property.

“Congress shall make no law…prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” This is the single most overlooked, ignored, and disregarded part of the First Amendment. “Or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” That means that anyone may practice their religion any time, anywhere.

That means that the neither the government nor the courts may in any capacity prevent a religious activity or the display of religious symbols.

That means that the ACLU needs to re-read the Bill of Rights. The Freedom from Religion Foundation needs to shut up and suck it up. Both these organizations are basing their anti-religious campaigns on, at best, specious arguments; at worst, an attempt to bastardize our Constitution to suit their own views.

Regarding the Freedom from Religion Foundation, if you really want to be free of religion, move to North Korea. Don’t try to force your 3 percent minority views down the throats of over 80 percent of Americans. You have a right to your opinion, but not to force it upon others. For the record, seeing a Christmas tree does not constitute having Christianity forced down your throat.

“Congress shall make no law…abridging the freedom of speech.”

Speech is the operative word here. Miriam-Webster defines speech as “a spoken expression of ideas, opinions, etc., that is made by someone who is speaking in front of a group of people.” A reasonable person may also interpret this to include the written word (courts love the term reasonable). This part of the First Amendment does not include by inference flag burning, going naked in public, or trying to force your views on someone else, such as forcing a religious baker to make wedding cakes for gay couples. They are free to take their business elsewhere.

Many people are using political correctness to censor the free speech of those with whom they do not agree. They claim to be offended by whatever word or phrase they are currently trying to suppress in order to silence others. I have read the Constitution and Bill of a Rights dozens of times each, and nowhere in either document is there any mention of the right to never be offended. Deal with it.

The First Amendment also does not require free speech to be practiced in free speech zones. The entire United States of America is a free speech zone.

Even the uber-liberal mainstream media would raise a howling fit if they were told they are restricted to free press zones. If some group tried to insist that reporters, like the Ten Commandments and Christmas trees, not be allowed on government property, they would have apoplectic fits.

“Congress shall make no law…abridging the freedom of…the press.” See the above paragraph.

“Congress shall make no law…abridging…the right of the people to peaceably assemble.”

That includes the people who gathered in their hundreds to support Cliven Bundy. These people were only armed because the minions of the Bureau of Land Management came heavily armed.

As the saying goes, you don’t take a knife to a gun fight. Bundy’s supporters stayed calm and did not fire their weapons, even in the face of deliberate provocation. Yet our illustrious Senate Majority Leader has seen fit to call these peaceably assembled Americans “domestic terrorists.”

The biggest issue here is why did the BLM feel it was appropriate to go into this situation with snipers and 250 people armed with assault weapons and tasers. The BLM has made no claim that they were threatened before they arrived at the location in question, so? Is this how our government intends to respond to all Americans who disagree with it?

“Congress shall make no law…abridging…the right of the people…to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.” Once again, our Senate Majority Leader has obstructed the voice of the American people by refusing to allow the Senate to even consider bills submitted by the very body elected to represent the American people, the House of Representatives.

The Senate represents the States; the House represents the people. The fact that one person has the power to decide what bills may and may not be voted upon is an obscenity.

By flagrantly abusing this particular Senate rule, Reid makes it impossible for any legislation contrary to Obama’s policies to be voted on, let alone passed, thus creating an hegemony for the Democratic Party.

This is absolutely not what our Founding Fathers intended; in fact, it is what they fought against with their lives, fortunes, and sacred honor.

One last item for consideration: Congress is the only federal lawmaking body, so there can be no federal laws respecting these six rights. That includes so-called executive orders.

Take back your First Amendment rights, America.

Arvilla Trag

Iron River