The progressive war on Christmas has become one of the fundamental constants of the universe.  Here is one of the more egregious examples from this year’s annual battle to make sure all things religious are exiled from any property that may be considered public and the dreaded Merry Christmas is never uttered.

Indiana Town Removes Cross From Christmas Tree After ACLU Lawsuit

The mythical separation of church and state was once again used as a justification for vanquishing this cross, which was used for decades.  All it took was one complaint and the ACLU bullied the small town into submission with a lawsuit they could not possibly afford to fight.  Yes, the separation church and state is mythical.  It is a fairytale created by Justice Hugo Black when he wrote his decision for the 1947 Supreme Court case Everson versus Board of Education.  Justice Black claimed that the establishment clause of First Amendment prevented any government organization, at any level, from participating in any type religious activity because that clause built a wall of separation of church and state.  This ruling was a complete departure from the reality that existed in this country from the very instant of the ratification of the Bill of Rights right up until the instant he delivered this ruling.  It completely contradicts the transcripts from the writing of the Bill of Rights and the transcripts of the ratification debates in the States.  Here is what James Madison had to say during the debates when this clause was written:

Mr. Madison said, he apprehended the meaning of the words to be, that Congress should not establish a religion, and enforce the legal observation of it by law, nor compel men to worship God in any manner contrary to their conscience.

It is quite clear from this quote, the Establishment Clause prevents the federal government from passing laws that would establish an official religion and it prevents the passage of laws that would force individuals to worship in a specific manner.  Rather than use the official transcripts, Justice Black based this sweeping new constitutional doctrine on a personal letter between Thomas Jefferson and the Danbury Baptist Church.  To add insult to injury, he completely distorted the actual text and meaning of that letter.

What makes the Everson ruling even more inaccurate; Justice Black completely disregarded the free exercise of religion clause of the First Amendment.  This clause specifically prevents the federal government from passing laws that would prevent individuals from freely exercising their religious beliefs.  Free exercise of religion is one of the most important god-given natural rights that every individual is endowed with.  Here is what George Mason had to say about free exercise of religion when he wrote the Virginia Declaration of Rights in 1776.

That religion, or the duty which we owe to our Creator, and the manner of discharging it, can be directed only by reason and conviction, not by force or violence; and therefore all men are equally entitled to the free exercise of religion, according to the dictates of conscience; and that it is the mutual duty of all to practice Christian forbearance, love, and charity, towards each other.

The Virginia Declaration of Rights served as the model for the US Bill of Rights and George Mason played a prominent role in the writing of the US Constitution,

Justice Hugo Black completely massacred one more fundamental constitutional principle when he wrote the Everson ruling = The United States Bill of Rights only applies to the federal government.  It never applied to the States and it most certainly never applied to cities and towns.  That is abundantly clear from the transcripts of the State ratifying conventions for the Constitution when a Bill of Rights was demanded, from the transcripts in the House of Representatives and Senate when the Bill of Rights was written, and from the transcripts when the Bill of Rights was ratified by the States.  How can the establishment clause prevent a town from having a cross on a Christmas tree or any other type of religious display?  It cannot.  There is no constitutional basis or this lawsuit nor any similar lawsuit filed by the ACLU.

Like so many of you, at 2:41 am election night I let out the most tremendous sigh of relief.  As a libertarian, I am greatly relieved that Hillary Clinton lost the election.   Coming after eight years of the radical and fundamental transformation instituted by President Obama there would have been very little left of our Constitutional Republic.   President Hillary would have continued governing by imperial edict, just like President Obama, and the spineless Republicans in both houses of congress would have continued to nothing except whine.  Like everyone else that understands and respects the Constitution, what scared me the most was the fact President Clinton would have had the opportunity to nominate two or three Supreme Court Justices,   I don’t want to freak you out too much but it was rumored that Hillary Clinton was considering appointing President Obama.  It is abundantly clear that whoever she would have appointed it would have been a radical leftist like herself.    Religious freedom, the right to bear arms, and free speech would have been severely curtailed.

I did not celebrate President Donald Trump’s victory.  I am cautiously optimistic that he might possibly be an OK president.  He is a big government type.  A lot of his positions are more closely aligned with those of Democrats, although not radical socialist Democrats like President Obama and Hillary Clinton.  During the campaign he promised to govern more like a conservative and promised to nominate strict constructionalists to the Supreme Court.  Even if he does not carry through on all of his promises he still will be infinitely better than President Clinton would have been.

Both the Republican and Democrat parties were major losers during this election.  They both nominated such abysmal candidates.  Both George Washington and Thomas Jefferson warned about the dangers of a two party system.   We should have listened. We the people need to scrap the two major parties.  They have a complete stranglehold and the entire political process and both are corrupt to the core.  It will be a long difficult process but it is necessary.  Unfortunately the Libertarian Party also produced an abysmal nominee this election.

The mainstream media really out did themselves this election when it comes to liberal media bias.  They actively became an extension of the Clinton campaign.  Unfortunately far too many people rely on them exclusively for their news.  That locker room chat video came way too close to being the deciding factor for this election.  This problem needs solution before the next presidential election.

We also need to break the liberal stranglehold on higher education.  Colleges are training a generation of social justice warriors who believe socialism is superior to free market capitalism.  They also believe that the Constitution and our founding principles are garbage because the founding fathers were nothing but while, slave holding racists.

Defeating Hillary Clinton was an emergency stop gap measure to prevent the destruction of our Constitutional Republic.  Restoring our Constitutional Republic will take decades of hard work.  More on that in future articles.

Federal regulations place an enormous burden on our economy.  They are strangling every individual and business with red tape.  Earlier this year the Competitive Enterprise Institute released this report detailing the exact size of this regulatory nightmare.  Here are some highlights from that report.

  • The total cost of regulatory compliance for 2015 alone was $1.885 trillion
  • The cost per household that year was $15000
  • 80000 pages of federal rules and regulations were added to the federal register that year
  • There are about 60 different federal agencies writing regulations

The vast majority of these regulations violate several fundamental clauses of the United States Constitution.

All of these regulations are written by departments of the Executive Branch or by independent agencies.  This violates Article I Section 1 which states:

All legislative powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives.

The legislative branch has been derelict in its constitutional obligations.  For the past several decades both houses of congress have written laws which have delegated legislative power to these regulatory agencies.  Congress does not have the authority to delegate legislative authority to anyone.  They are not granted that power.  John Locke, one of the primary influences of the framers of the Constitution, was quite clear on this when he wrote his Second Treatise on Government:

The Legislative cannot transfer the Power of Making Laws to any other hands. For it being but a delegated Power from the People, they, who have it, cannot pass it over to others. The People alone can appoint the Form of the Commonwealth, which is by Constituting the Legislative, and appointing in whose hands that shall be. And when the People have said, We will submit to rules, and be govern’d by Laws made by such Men, and in such Forms, no Body else can say other Men shall make Laws for them; nor can the people be bound by any Laws but such as are Enacted by those, whom they have Chosen, and Authorised to make Laws for them. The power of the Legislative being derived from the People by a positive voluntary Grant and Institution, can be no other, than what that positive Grant conveyed, which being only to make Laws, and not to make Legislators, the Legislative can have no power to transfer their Authority of making Laws, and place it in other hands.

Regulations written by these regulatory agencies are treated as the law of the land even though they are never passed by both houses and signed by the president.  This is in violation of Article 1 Section 7 of the Constitution, which defines the formal legislative process.

The US Constitution created a limited federal government with only clearly defined powers, which are spelled out in Article 1 Section 8.  All other powers are left to the individual States.  This is declared in the Tenth Amendment:

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

These regulations violate the Tenth Amendment because they grant the federal government the authority to regulate in areas not contained in the powers enumerated in Article 1 Section 8.

The federal government treats these regulations as if they are the law of the land, in violation of the Supremacy Clause, which is Article 6 Section 2:

This constitution, and the laws of the United States which shall be made in pursuance thereof; and all treaties made, or which shall be made, under the authority of the United States shall be the supreme law of the land; and the judges in every state shall be bound thereby, any thing in the constitution or laws of any state to the contrary notwithstanding.

Because these regulations violate several provisions of the Constitution, they are not in pursuance of the Constitution; therefore they are not the law of the land.

Since all of these regulations already violate several articles of the Constitution, a constitutional amendment preventing the federal government from implementing this regulatory nightmare is not the solution to this constitutional crisis.  Thomas Jefferson proposed the solution to this crisis when he wrote the Kentucky Resolutions of 1798.  The States must refuse to implement these unconstitutional regulations and the States must refuse to help the federal government implement them.

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Contrary to what is taught in colleges and promoted by the media today; the government created by the US Constitution is not a democracy, it is a constitutional republic. About a century ago progressives began systematically transforming this country from a constitutional republic into a European style parliamentary democracy. They accomplished this by elevating laws passed by congress, executive orders, federal regulations, and Supreme Court decisions to the status of the supreme law of the land, while completely ignoring the actual text of the Constitution, which is the supreme law of the land.

In recent decades, progressives have taken this transformation well beyond turning this nation into a parliamentary democracy. They have created a form of government that is more dangerous by greatly increasing the power and scope of the Executive Branch. President Obama now wields almost unlimited legislative power through his unconstitutional use of executive orders.

This fundamental transformation has also included the creation of a fourth branch of the federal government. This branch consists of an army unelected bureaucrats who control virtually every aspect of our lives.

The Constitution created a bottom up government hierarchy, with the federal government as the weakest tier. Local governments were supposed to have the most influence on our daily lives. States were meant to be mostly independent nations tied together by a weak central government. The federal government lacked the power to reach down and affect the lives of those living inside the States. This has now been completely reversed by progressives. Virtually every aspect of our lives is closely regulated by the federal government.

These fundamental transformations, which have been greatly accelerated by President Obama, have produced disastrous results for everyone. To reverse these disastrous transformations, “We the people” must restore our government back to a constitutional republic. Here is my step by step guide to accomplishing this.

We must educate ourselves

I would highly recommend everyone read:

The Notes on the Debates in the Federal Convention
The Federalist Papers
The Anti-federalist Papers
The 5000 Year Leap, by W. Cleon Skousen
The Making of America: The Substance and Meaning of the Constitution, also by Skousen.
The Kentucky Resolutions by Thomas Jefferson
The Virginia Resolutions by James Madison

The Kentucky Resolutions and the Virginia Resolutions are essential reading because they contain the blueprint for restoring our constitutional republic.

We must educate others

Please share this article with as many people and groups as possible thru Facebook, Twitter, and other social media outlets. Please read the texts I mentioned in the previous section and share that knowledge with as many people as possible.

We must educate our State governments.

Most members of State governments are completely oblivious when it comes to the extent of the restorative powers that the States can wield when dealing with a federal government that has exceeded its constitutional limitations. Thomas Jefferson wrote the Kentucky Resolutions in response to the Alien and Seditions Acts,which were passed in 1798. Here is section one:

Resolved, That the several States composing, the United States of America, are not united on the principle of unlimited submission to their general government; but that, by a compact under the style and title of a Constitution for the United States, and of amendments thereto, they constituted a general government for special purposes — delegated to that government certain definite powers, reserving, each State to itself, the residuary mass of right to their own self-government; and that whensoever the general government assumes undelegated powers, its acts are unauthoritative, void, and of no force: that to this compact each State acceded as a State, and is an integral part, its co-States forming, as to itself, the other party: that the government created by this compact was not made the exclusive or final judge of the extent of the powers delegated to itself; since that would have made its discretion, and not the Constitution, the measure of its powers; but that, as in all other cases of compact among powers having no common judge, each party has an equal right to judge for itself, as well of infractions as of the mode and measure of redress.

James Madison echoed Thomas Jefferson when he wrote the Virginia Resolutions. The constitutional doctrine laid out in these documents, which is called nullification, is the single most important tool for restoring the federal government to its constitutional boundaries. To implement nullification States need only to declare that a certain action by the federal government violates the Constitution, therefore it is null and void, and the State will not enforce it. States can use nullification on all federal laws, regulations, executive orders, and Supreme Court decisions that violate the Constitution. This process is independent from the Supreme Court.

We must make nullification a major campaign issue.

It is vital that we ask every elected member of State government if they support nullification as a means of restoring our constitutional republic. If they do not, we must find alternative candidates that do, and we must make every effort to get them elected.

I do not believe the Article 5 amendment process is the answer.

The federal government has completely ignored or distorted every single clause of the Constitution and every single amendment. I firmly believe the federal government will do the same with any new amendment that is ratified. The federal government will not reform itself. Under the Constitution, the States were always meant to be the ultimate restorative force.

Please check out my previous articles:

Politically Correct equals Newspeak
The Intoxicating History of Beer
Climate Change Has become a religion
Freedom of Religion not Freedom From Religion
Time to bust some Second Amendment Myths

A note from DaTechGuy: This is the last week of Da Magnificent Tryouts. If you like Jon’s Piece(s) and want him to stay now is the time to hit DaTipJar in his support and share his pieces

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I first encountered political correctness back in September of 1991 when I first attended the University of Massachusetts in Amherst.  It became immediately apparent to me that this political correct nonsense was a dangerous form of Orwellian censorship.  Newspeak, from George Orwell’s 1984, leapt to mind the first time I encountered the PC thought police in action.  For those of you who haven’t read 1984 recently, here is how George Orwell described Newspeak in the Appendix “The Principles of Newspeak.”

The purpose of Newspeak was not only to provide a medium of expression for the world-view and mental habits proper to the devotees of Ingsoc, but to make all other modes of thought impossible. It was intended that when Newspeak had been adopted once and for all and Oldspeak forgotten, a heretical thought — that is, a thought diverging from the principles of Ingsoc — should be literally unthinkable, at least so far as thought is dependent on words.

Here are excerpts from article “The Origins of Political Correctness” from the Accuracy in Academia.  They will demonstrate the parallels between Newspeak and Political Correctness.

If we look at it analytically, if we look at it historically, we quickly find out exactly what it is. Political Correctness is cultural Marxism. It is Marxism translated from economic into cultural terms. It is an effort that goes back not to the 1960s and the hippies and the peace movement, but back to World War I. If we compare the basic tenets of Political Correctness with classical Marxism the parallels are very obvious.

First of all, both are totalitarian ideologies. The totalitarian nature of Political Correctness is revealed nowhere more clearly than on college campuses.

And finally, both have a method of analysis that automatically gives the answers they want. For the classical Marxist, it’s Marxist economics. For the cultural Marxist, it’s deconstruction. Deconstruction essentially takes any text, removes all meaning from it and re-inserts any meaning desired.

To further emphasize the parallels here are excerpts from the article “Political Correct is Cultural Marxism” which appeared in the American Thinker

PC, just like Marxism, forces people to live a lie by denying reality.  PC takes a political philosophy and says that on the basis of the chosen philosophy, certain things must be true, and reality that contradicts its “truth” must be forbidden

PC, just like Marxism, has a method of analysis that always provides the answer it wants.  For PC, the “answer” is found through deconstruction, which takes any situation, removes all meaning from it, and replaces it with PC’s desired meaning.

Both Newspeak and political correctness are totalitarian in nature.  George Orwell wrote 1984 as a warning against what was happening in the Soviet Union so Newspeak was based on Marxist principles. just like political correctness.  Both seek to control thought by controlling language.

Unlike Newspeak, political correctness is alive and well here in the United States, where it has infected all aspects of our culture.  Colleges and universities were the first to be infected by political correctness, which is now preached in just about every class, and where contrary ideas are not welcome. Hollywood was also infected along with the news media, which has turned both into propaganda arms for progressives.

All across the United States people are afraid speak their minds because they are afraid to be labeled bigots.  In far too many cases, individuals are denied the opportunity to speak their minds because the media is so infected and contrary opinions are not allowed.

Political correctness is dangerous.  All criticism of Islam is deemed islamophobic no matter how valid the criticism is.  Whenever there is a terrorist attack by Islamic extremists all connections to Islam are swept under the rug.  A pathological fear of guns is a central tenet of political correctness with gun control a central theme.   All criticism of illegal immigration is labeled xenophobic.

Political correctness is designed to influence elections.  Conservative policies and ideals are labeled bigoted, extreme, and offensive by the media while liberal ideals are lionized.  All efforts at securing elections through voter ID are labeled racist.

Refusing to be silenced is the only way to counter political correctness.  We must always speak our minds. We must speak out about the evils of political correctness.  On my dorm room door I had a large sign proclaiming “political correct is censorship.”  The sign was vandalized often and I took a lot of heated criticism because that was not a popular position at UMASS but the sign remained.  I am frequently critical of political correctness on Facebook and I post whatever I want no matter how much it offends my liberal friends.  Fortunately for us the internet has provided a multitude of options for people to get non PC news and express non PC views.


A note from DaTechGugy: I hope you enjoyed Jon Fournier’s piece. Remember we will be judging the entries in Da Magnificent tryouts by hits both to their post and to DaTipJar So if you like Jon Fournier’s work please consider sharing this post, and if you hit DaTipjar because of it don’t forget to mention Jon Fournier’s post is the reason you did so.

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Most likely the first individuals to brew a beer like substance were lazy farmers who invented this marvelous beverage completely by accident.  These slothful farmers left grains outside and the grains were allowed to sit in water for an extended period of time.  This caused natural enzymes in the grain to convert the starches into sugars and then over a period of many weeks airborne yeast converted the sugars into alcohol.   It didn’t taste very good but it gave the drinkers a cool buzzy feeling if they drank enough.  This took place in various regions of the world approximately 9000 years ago when grain cultivation was becoming common.

Over time individuals in different regions of the world began experimenting with this intoxicating elixir.  These intrepid brewers discovered that if they collected the sugary liquid that is left over from steeping grains in hot water and then boiled it with bitter herbs or spices they ended up with a much tastier brew.  What they did not realize was that by boiling this mixture to brew the beer they were killing off the harmful organisms that were living in the water,

Before the advent of proper sanitary practices, water quality limited the number of people that could live in close proximity.  With all of the grains used, beer is also very nourishing.  The health benefits of drinking beer rather than contaminated water quickly became evident.  Beer became the beverage of choice.  This allowed more people to live in close proximity to each other which allowed larger cities.  More grain was needed to brew beer which led to advances in agriculture.

Without bitterness beer would be cloyingly sweet.  Many herbs and spices were used in different regions to add the necessary bitterness.  One particular herb, the flowers of a fast growing vine called hops, proved far superior to all of the rest.  Not only do hops provide the right amount of bitterness and wonderful flavor combinations, they are also a preservative.  No harmful organisms can grow in beer when hops are used.  The first recorded use of hops happened in the Hallertau region of Germany around 1000 AD.   By the 1400s hops replaced all other brewing herbs in Europe.

Beer played a major role in the founding of this nation.  In 1620 the Mayflower was heading for the Virginia Colony.  Due to a navigation error the ship ended up off the coast of what would become Boston.  The ship was running low on beer so rather than sail to the intended destination the captain left the colonists off at Plymouth.  The brew house was one of the first buildings built.

Even though the water in North America was pristine, new colonists did not trust the water.  Beer was believed to be essential for survival in the new world.  Most village taverns brewed their own beer along with farmers.    Large commercial breweries opened in cities.

Beer was one of the primary fuels for the American Revolution.  Colonists would congregate in taverns, drink beer, and plot ways to answer England’s outrageous taxes and policies.  On December 16, 1773 a group of colonists gathered in Boston’s Green Dragon Tavern.  Among them were Samuel Adams and John Hancock.  Barrels of beer were donated by John Hancock.  Fortified by those barrels of beer the colonists, who called themselves Sons of Liberty, climbed aboard ships anchored in Boston Harbor and dumped copious amounts of tea in the harbor.

After the revolution beer played a major role in maintaining liberty.  Rather than rely on a standing army the framers of the Constitution relied on militia units made up of the body of the people.  Members of the militia had to train in order to be effective.  At first getting the militia members to attend training proved difficult.  To encourage greater attendance towns provided barrels of beer, making sure the beer was consumed after training.  Free beer greatly increased attendance.

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To a great many on the political left climate change has become a religion. They believe passionately in man caused global warming despite a lack of any valid scientific evidence.  There is plenty of evidence but is it valid scientific evidence?  No it is not. If you examine this evidence closely you will see it falls into three categories.  Most so called scientific evidence is based on computer models which have proved to be inaccurate time after time.  Secondly, inaccurate observations in the form of poorly sited monitoring stations, usually surrounded by growing cities that trap in more heat, are very common.   The final category masquerading as scientific proof consists of anecdotes in such publications as mountain climbing magazines.  If you question their belief these true believers will point out that 97 percent of all scientists believe in man caused global warming.  This widely cited statistic is based on one deeply flawed survey of published scientific journals.

Those that question this belief in man caused global warming are treated as heretics.  Sixteen liberal attorneys general have begun the process of prosecuting climate change deniers in their states.  The first time I questioned global warming on Facebook a liberal friend very sarcastically asked me if I believe in gravity.  That was just the beginning of the onslaught from my liberal friends.

President Obama, along with the help of Democrats in congress, is in the process of establishing climate change as the official religion of the United States.  It has been reported on several conservative sites that President Obama is in the process of implementing the Paris Climate Accord even though the Senate has not ratified the treaty.  Article 2 Section 3 Clause 2 of the Constitution is quite clear on what is required for a treaty to be legally binding:

He shall have power, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, to make treaties, provided two-thirds of the Senators present concur.

The Obama administration is implementing this agreement through executive orders.  This use of executive orders would also violate the following provisions of the Constitution: Article 1 Section 1 which states only congress has the power to legislate, Article 1 Section 7 which is the formal legislative process, and Article 6 Section 2 which is the Supremacy Clause.

President Obama has waged a war on coal power plants by enacting debilitating regulations through executive orders.  The Supreme Court has temporarily put a stop to these regulations.  If these regulations go into full effect a great many coal fired power plants will shut down causing energy prices to “necessarily skyrocket” as President Obama has promised.

Preaching climate change has become the central mission of NASA under President Obama.  Manned space flight has been put on the back burner to make room for the climate missions.  Schools at all levels are preaching climate change as gospel.  Contrary information is not welcome.

Please check out my previous 2 articles

Time to Bust Some Second Amendment Myths

Free Exercise of Religion not Freedom from Religion


A note from DaTechGugy: I hope you enjoyed Jon Fournier’s piece. Remember we will be judging the entries in Da Magnificent tryouts by hits both to their post and to DaTipJar So if you like Jon Fournier’s work please consider sharing this post, and if you hit DaTipjar because of it don’t forget to mention Jon Fournier’s post is the reason you did so. If you missed Jon’s last two posts he linked them above before I could, check em out.

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Judges are ordering the removal of crosses from war memorials.  Ten Commandment sculptures are being removed from court houses.  Nativity Scenes have been removed from a great many town commons.  Members of state and local governments are being barred from opening meetings with prayers.  Religious statements are being banned from school graduations.  This is just a small sample of instances where public displays of religion are being removed and members of government are being prevented from freely exercising their religious beliefs in public.  The battle cry for this war on public displays of religion is always the same; there is a separation of Church and State which is supposed to be an integral part of the US Constitution.   This phrase cannot be found anywhere in the Constitution yet, according to David Barton from the organization Wall Builders; it has been cited in over 4000 cases.

The Supreme Court Case Everson vs. Board of Education in 1947 marked the beginning of this war on public displays of religion.  Here is an excerpt from that ruling.

Neither a state nor the Federal Government can, openly or secretly, participate in the affairs of any religious organizations or groups and vice versa. In the words of Jefferson, the clause against establishment of religion by law was intended to erect ‘a wall of separation between Church and State.

To create such a sweeping new constitutional doctrine, Justice Hugo Black borrowed that phrase from a personal letter rather that Constitution itself.  That letter was from Thomas Jefferson to the Danbury Baptist Association.  Here is the text of that letter:

Believing with you that religion is a matter which lies solely between man and his God, that he owes account to none other for his faith or his worship, that the legislative powers of government reach actions only, and not opinions, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should “make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,” thus building a wall of separation between Church and State. Adhering to this expression of the supreme will of the nation in behalf of the rights of conscience, I shall see with sincere satisfaction the progress of those sentiments which tend to restore to man all his natural rights, convinced he has no natural right in opposition to his social duties.

As you can see from the letter, the mechanism Jefferson mentioned for erecting that wall between church and state is the actual text of the First Amendment religion clauses.  The first clause prevents the US Congress from passing laws that would establish a national religion.  The second clause prevents the US Congress from passing laws that would interfere with the free exercise of religion by individuals.  James Madison went into great detail when he proposed this amendment in the House of Representatives.  Here is an excerpt from the debates during the writing of the Bill of Rights:

Mr. Madison said, he apprehended the meaning of the words to be, that Congress should not establish a religion, and enforce the legal observation of it by law, nor compel men to worship God in any manner contrary to their conscience

James Madison, the author of the First Amendment, issued the following  presidential proclamation in 1814.  As you can see this proclamation contains religious language.  Madison believed such a proclamation did not violate the establishment clause so how could town officials participating in prayers violate the same?

The two Houses of the National Legislature having by a joint resolution expressed their desire that in the present time of public calamity and war a day may be recommended to be observed by the people of the United States as a day of public humiliation and fasting and of prayer to Almighty God for the safety and welfare of these States, His blessing on their arms, and a speedy restoration of peace.

It is quite clear from the entire transcripts from the drafting of the Bill of Rights that those amendments only applied to the federal government.  James Madison proposed extending certain clauses from the Bill of Rights down to the States.  This was defeated.

When Justice Black issued his Everson vs. Board of Education ruling he claimed that the Fourteenth Amendment extended this separation of church and state down to the States by incorporating the Bill of Rights down to the States.  According to that ruling this was accomplished because the entire Bill of Rights was included in the word liberty found in the due process clause of that amendment.  That is the height of absurdity because this clause of the 14th Amendment is a copy of the due process of the 5th Amendment.  The 14th Amendment did extend the due process clause of the 5th Amendment down to the States however that was the only clause of the Bill of Rights that was extended down to the States by this amendment.

Many states had official religions at the time of the ratification of the Bill of Rights.  After the ratification of the Bill of Rights those same states still had an official religion.  On their own those states de-established their official religion.  If the establishment clause did not prevent states from having official religions how did it stop state and local government officials from leading others in prayers?

Both Madison and Jefferson were instrumental in de-establishing the official church of Virginia.  James Madison wrote “Memorial and Remonstrance Against Religious Assessment” and Thomas Jefferson wrote “The Virginia Statute for Establishing Religious Freedom.”  Both works have been quoted by proponents of this modern, all inclusive, idea of a separation of church and state to prove Jefferson and Madison advocated for this doctrine.  These quotes are taken out of context.  The full text of those documents does not support that conclusion.

A note from DaTechGuy: I hope you enjoyed Jon Fournier’s piece. Remember we will be judging the entries in Da Magnificent tryouts by hits both to their post and to DaTipJar So if you like Jon Fournier’s work please consider sharing this post, and if you hit DaTipjar because of it don’t forget to mention Jon Fournier’s post is the reason you did so. His piece from last week is here.

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On July 19th Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey unilaterally banned the sale of most semiautomatic rifles in the State simply because they share characteristics with already banned “assault rifles”.  This is the newest in a long series of threats to our right to bear arms.  The best way to fight against these threats is by arming ourselves and others with knowledge about the original meaning and purpose of the Second Amendment.   We must combat all of the distortions and out right lies about the Second Amendment.  Most of the distortions of the Second Amendment come from those on the left however those on the right are also guilty on a couple key points so please keep reading even if you consider yourself to be an expert on the Second Amendment.

How many times have you heard the one about the Second Amendment being just about hunting?  If you’re like me you’ve heard it way too many times.  The framers of the Second Amendment made it abundantly clear the purpose was defense — self defense, defense of the community, defense of the State, and defense of the nation.

The Virginia Declaration of Rights, which was written in 1776, served as a model for the Bill of Rights.  It is very similar to amendments proposed during the New York and North Carolina ratifying conventions for the Constitution.  The final version of the Second Amendment was an edited down version of this which conveyed the same meaning with less words.  Here is section 13 of that document:

That a well-regulated Militia, composed of the body of the people, trained to arms, is the proper, natural, and safe defence of a free State; that Standing Armies, in time of peace, should be avoided as dangerous to liberty; and that, in all cases, the military should be under strict subordination to, and governed by, the civil power.

Two common distortions which are linked together are that the Second Amendment is a collective right that only applies to members of the militia and the militia was exactly same as the National Guard is today.  Both points are incorrect.  None of the rights mentioned in the Bill of Rights are collective rights.  The framers of the Constitution and Bill of Rights believed only in individual rights.  The National Guard, which came into existence in 1933, is made up of formal military units composed of a limited number of individuals.  The militia was made up of the entire population.  That was clearly stated in the Virginia Declaration of Rights and the amendments proposed during the ratifying convention.  Here are two more quotes regarding the make up of the militia and scope of the right to bear arms:

Richard Henry Lee Federal Farmer 18

To preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of people always possess arms, and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them…

George Mason Virginia Ratifying Convention 1787

I ask who are the militia? They consist now of the whole people, except a few public officers.”

The right to bear arms is not granted to us by the Second Amendment.  That right is granted to every individual by God.  It is one of the God given Natural Rights.  The Second Amendment protects and preserves that right by preventing the federal government from interfering with that right in any way.  All federal restrictions and regulations involving firearms are unconstitutional.  The only role the Supreme Court should play involving the Second Amendment is to declare all federal restrictions unconstitutional.  Unfortunately the federal government, including the Supreme Court, stopped following the Constitution decades ago.

I know I’m going to take heat from some on the right about this but the Second Amendment does not prevent the States from placing restrictions on firearms.  The Bill of Rights does not apply to the States in any way.  That is quite clear from the transcripts form the drafting and the ratifying of the Bill of Rights.  James Madison proposed extending some of the Bill of Rights to the States but that was shot down.  The US Constitution created a bottom up federal republic not a top down national government with the federal government in complete control.  No rights are absolute,  At some level decisions have to be made to determine where exercising your rights becomes an abuse of your rights,  If freedom of speech is absolute what would prevent someone from standing outside your bedroom window all night screaming threats and obscenities at you?  If freedom of religion is absolute then there would be no way to prevent human sacrifice.  The framers of the Constitution believed these decisions should be made at the State level.

There are two levels of defense built into our constitutional system to prevent the States from becoming abusive to our rights.  The first line of defense is the State Constitutions.  Every State Constitution has a Bill of Rights.  All but a few protect the right to bear arms.  Here is what the Massachusetts Constitution has to say on this subject:

Article XVII. The people have a right to keep and to bear arms for the common defence. And as, in time of peace, armies are dangerous to liberty, they ought not to be maintained without the consent of the legislature; and the military power shall always be held in an exact subordination to the civil authority, and be governed by it.

Since guns are meant for common defense and those so called assault weapons are perfect for common defense aren’t they protected?

The ultimate line of defense is “we the people”.  It is up the people of the States to decide when the State governments go to far in the regulations of firearms,  They must play an active role and hold the State governments accountable.  They must educate their fellow citizens, organize protests, and vote out all that want to go to far with restricting guns.  I firmly believe that permit less open carry with no restrictions is the model for all States.

Who is Jon Fournier — Im a strict constitutionalist who has studied the Notes on the Debates in the Federal Convention, the transcripts of the State ratifying conventions, The Federalist Papers, The Anti-Federalist Papers, and the writings of the framers of the Constitution. I have also studied economics through the writings of Adam Smith, F A Hayek, Ludwig von Mises, and Milton Friedman.

A note from DaTechGugy: I hope you enjoyed Jon Fournier’s piece. Remember we will be judging the entries in Da Magnificent tryouts by hits both to their post and to DaTipJar So if you like Jon Fournier’s work please consider sharing this post, and if you hit DaTipjar because of it don’t forget to mention Jon Fourniers post is the reason you did so.

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