Let’s Make America Free Again: 230 Years After the Constitution, We’re Walking a Dangerous Road

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“I tell you, freedom and human rights in America are doomed. The U.S. government will lead the American people in — and the West in general — into an unbearable hell and a choking life.”—Osama bin Laden (October 2001)

Ironically, during the same week that we mark the 16th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, we find ourselves commemorating the 230th anniversary of the U.S. Constitution.

While there has been much to mourn about the loss of our freedoms in the years since 9/11, there has been very little to celebrate. Indeed, we have gone from being a nation that took great pride in serving as a model of a representative democracy to being a model of how to persuade a freedom-loving people to march in lockstep with a police state.

What began with the passage of the USA Patriot Act in the wake of the 9/11 attacks has snowballed into the eradication of every vital safeguard against government overreach, corruption and abuse.

Since then, we have been terrorized, traumatized, and tricked into a semi-permanent state of compliance. The bogeyman’s names and faces change over time, but the end result remains the same: our unquestioning acquiescence to anything the government wants to do in exchange for the phantom promise of safety and security.

All the while, the Constitution has been steadily chipped away at, undermined, eroded, whittled down, and generally discarded to such an extent that what we are left with today is but a shadow of the robust document adopted more than two centuries ago. Most of the damage, however, has been inflicted upon the Bill of Rights—the first ten amendments to the Constitution—which historically served as the bulwark from government abuse.

Set against a backdrop of government surveillance, militarized police, SWAT team raids, asset forfeiture, eminent domain, overcriminalization, armed surveillance drones, whole body scanners, stop and frisk searches, roving VIPR raids and the like—all sanctioned by Congress, the White House, the courts and the like—a recitation of the Bill of Rights would understandably sound more like a eulogy to freedoms lost than an affirmation of rights we truly possess.

We can pretend that the Constitution, which was written to hold the government accountable, is still our governing document. However, the reality we must come to terms with is that in the America we live in today, the government does whatever it wants, freedom be damned.

Here is what it means to live under the Constitution today.

The First Amendment is supposed to protect the freedom to speak your mind, assemble and protest nonviolently without being bridled by the government. It also protects the freedom of the media, as well as the right to worship and pray without interference. In other words, Americans should not be silenced by the government. To the founders, all of America was a free speech zone.

Despite the clear protections found in the First Amendment, the freedoms described therein are under constant assault. Increasingly, Americans are being arrested and charged with bogus “contempt of cop” charges such as “disrupting the peace” or “resisting arrest” for daring to film police officers engaged in harassment or abusive practices. Journalists are being prosecuted for reporting on whistleblowers. States are passing legislation to muzzle reporting on cruel and abusive corporate practices. Religious ministries are being fined for attempting to feed and house the homeless. Protesters are being tear-gassed, beaten, arrested and forced into “free speech zones.” And under the guise of “government speech,” the courts have reasoned that the government can discriminate freely against any First Amendment activity that takes place within a government forum.

The Second Amendment was intended to guarantee “the right of the people to keep and bear arms.” Essentially, this amendment was intended to give the citizenry the means to resist tyrannical government. Yet while gun ownership has been recognized by the U.S. Supreme Court as an individual citizen right, Americans remain powerless to defend themselves against SWAT team raids and government agents armed to the teeth with military weapons better suited for the battlefield. As such, this amendment has been rendered null and void.

The Third Amendment reinforces the principle that civilian-elected officials are superior to the military by prohibiting the military from entering any citizen’s home without “the consent of the owner.” With the police increasingly training like the military, acting like the military, and posing as military forces—complete with military weapons, assault vehicles, etc.—it is clear that we now have what the founders feared most—a standing army on American soil.

The Fourth Amendment prohibits the government from conducting surveillance on you or touching you or invading you, unless they have some evidence that you’re up to something criminal. In other words, the Fourth Amendment ensures privacy and bodily integrity. Unfortunately, the Fourth Amendment has suffered the greatest damage in recent years and has been all but eviscerated by an unwarranted expansion of police powers that include strip searches and even anal and vaginal searches of citizens, surveillance and intrusions justified in the name of fighting terrorism, as well as the outsourcing of otherwise illegal activities to private contractors.

The Fifth Amendment and the Sixth Amendment work in tandem. These amendments supposedly ensure that you are innocent until proven guilty, and government authorities cannot deprive you of your life, your liberty or your property without the right to an attorney and a fair trial before a civilian judge. However, in the new suspect society in which we live, where surveillance is the norm, these fundamental principles have been upended. Certainly, if the government can arbitrarily freeze, seize or lay claim to your property (money, land or possessions) under government asset forfeiture schemes, you have no true rights.

The Seventh Amendment guarantees citizens the right to a jury trial. Yet when the populace has no idea of what’s in the Constitution—civic education has virtually disappeared from most school curriculums—that inevitably translates to an ignorant jury incapable of distinguishing justice and the law from their own preconceived notions and fears. However, as a growing number of citizens are coming to realize, the power of the jury to nullify the government’s actions—and thereby help balance the scales of justice—is not to be underestimated. Jury nullification reminds the government that “we the people” retain the power to ultimately determine what laws are just.

The Eighth Amendment is similar to the Sixth in that it is supposed to protect the rights of the accused and forbid the use of cruel and unusual punishment. However, the Supreme Court’s determination that what constitutes “cruel and unusual” should be dependent on the “evolving standards of decency that mark the progress of a maturing society” leaves us with little protection in the face of a society lacking in morals altogether.

The Ninth Amendment provides that other rights not enumerated in the Constitution are nonetheless retained by the people. Popular sovereignty—the belief that the power to govern flows upward from the people rather than downward from the rulers—is clearly evident in this amendment. However, it has since been turned on its head by a centralized federal government that sees itself as supreme and which continues to pass more and more laws that restrict our freedoms under the pretext that it has an “important government interest” in doing so.

As for the Tenth Amendment’s reminder that the people and the states retain every authority that is not otherwise mentioned in the Constitution, that assurance of a system of government in which power is divided among local, state and national entities has long since been rendered moot by the centralized Washington, DC, power elite—the president, Congress and the courts. Indeed, the federal governmental bureaucracy has grown so large that it has made local and state legislatures relatively irrelevant. Through its many agencies and regulations, the federal government has stripped states of the right to regulate countless issues that were originally governed at the local level.

If there is any sense to be made from this recitation of freedoms lost, it is simply this: our individual freedoms have been eviscerated so that the government’s powers could be expanded.

Yet those who gave us the Constitution and the Bill of Rights believed that the government exists at the behest of its citizens. It is there to protect, defend and even enhance our freedoms, not violate them.

It was no idle happenstance that the Constitution opens with these three powerful words: “We the people.” As the Preamble proclaims:

We, the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect Union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this CONSTITUTION for the United States of America.

In other words, we have the power to make and break the government. We are the masters and they are the servants. We the American people—the citizenry—are the arbiters and ultimate guardians of America’s welfare, defense, liberty, laws and prosperity.

Still, it’s hard to be a good citizen if you don’t know anything about your rights or how the government is supposed to operate.

As the National Review rightly asks, “How can Americans possibly make intelligent and informed political choices if they don’t understand the fundamental structure of their government? American citizens have the right to self-government, but it seems that we increasingly lack the capacity for it.”

Americans are constitutionally illiterate.

Most citizens have little, if any, knowledge about their basic rights. And our educational system does a poor job of teaching the basic freedoms guaranteed in the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. For instance, when Newsweek asked 1,000 adult U.S. citizens to take America’s official citizenship test44% were unable to define the Bill of Rights.

A survey by the Annenberg Public Policy Center found that a little more than one-third of respondents (36 percent) could name all three branches of the U.S. government, while another one-third (35 percent) could not name a single one. Only a quarter of Americans (27 percent) know it takes a two-thirds vote of the House and Senate to override a presidential veto. One in five Americans (21 percent) incorrectly thinks that a 5-4 Supreme Court decision is sent back to Congress for reconsideration. And more than half of Americans do not know which party controls the House and Senate.

A 2006 survey by the McCormick Tribune Freedom Museum found that only one out of a thousand adults could identify the five rights protected by the First Amendment. On the other hand, more than half (52%) of the respondents could name at least two of the characters in the animated Simpsons television family, and 20% could name all five. And although half could name none of the freedoms in the First Amendment, a majority (54%) could name at least one of the three judges on the TV program American Idol, 41% could name two and one-fourth could name all three.

It gets worse.

Many who responded to the survey had a strange conception of what was in the First Amendment. For example, 21% said the “right to own a pet” was listed someplace between “Congress shall make no law” and “redress of grievances.” Some 17% said that the First Amendment contained the “right to drive a car,” and 38% believed that “taking the Fifth” was part of the First Amendment.

Teachers and school administrators do not fare much better. A study conducted by the Center for Survey Research and Analysis found that one educator in five was unable to name any of the freedoms in the First Amendment.

In fact, while some educators want students to learn about freedom, they do not necessarily want them to exercise their freedoms in school. As the researchers conclude, “Most educators think that students already have enough freedom, and that restrictions on freedom in the school are necessary. Many support filtering the Internet, censoring T-shirts, disallowing student distribution of political or religious material, and conducting prior review of school newspapers.”

Government leaders and politicians are also ill-informed. Although they take an oath to uphold, support and defend the Constitution against “enemies foreign and domestic,” their lack of education about our fundamental rights often causes them to be enemies of the Bill of Rights.

So what’s the solution?

Thomas Jefferson recognized that a citizenry educated on “their rights, interests, and duties”  is the only real assurance that freedom will survive.

As Jefferson wrote in 1820: “I know no safe depository of the ultimate powers of our society but the people themselves; and if we think them not enlightened enough to exercise their control with a wholesome discretion, the remedy is not to take it from them, but to inform their discretion by education. This is the true corrective of abuses of constitutional power.”

From the President on down, anyone taking public office should have a working knowledge of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights and should be held accountable for upholding their precepts. One way to ensure this would be to require government leaders to take a course on the Constitution and pass a thorough examination thereof before being allowed to take office.

Some critics are advocating that students pass the United States citizenship exam in order to graduate from high school. Others recommend that it must be a prerequisite for attending college. I’d go so far as to argue that students should have to pass the citizenship exam before graduating from grade school.

Here’s an idea to get educated and take a stand for freedom: anyone who signs up to become a member of The Rutherford Institute gets a wallet-sized Bill of Rights card and a Know Your Rights card.

If this constitutional illiteracy is not remedied and soon, freedom in America will be doomed.

As I make clear in my book Battlefield America: The War on the American People, we have managed to keep the wolf at bay so far. Barely.

Our national priorities need to be re-prioritized. For instance, Donald Trump wants to make America great again. I, for one, would prefer to make America free again.

As actor-turned-activist Richard Dreyfuss warned:

Unless we teach the ideas that make America a miracle of government, it will go away in your kids’ lifetimes, and we will be a fable. You have to find the time and creativity to teach it in schools, and if you don’t, you will lose it. You will lose it to the darkness, and what this country represents is a tiny twinkle of light in a history of oppression and darkness and cruelty. If it lasts for more than our lifetime, for more than our kids’ lifetime, it is only because we put some effort into teaching what it is, the ideas of America: the idea of opportunity, mobility, freedom of thought, freedom of assembly.”

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Contributed by John W. Whitehead of The Rutherford Institute.

Since 1996, John W. Whitehead has taken on everything from human rights abuses in Saudi Arabia, protection of religious freedom, and child pornography, to family autonomy issues, cross burning, the sanctity of human life, and the war on terrorism in his weekly opinion column. A self-proclaimed civil libertarian, Whitehead is considered by many to be a legal, political and cultural watchdog—sounding the call for integrity, accountability and an adherence to the democratic principles on which this country was founded.

Time and again, Whitehead hits the bull’s eye with commentaries that are insightful, relevant and provocative. And all too often, he finds himself under fire for his frank and unadulterated viewpoint. But as he frequently remarks, “Anytime people find themselves under fire from both the liberal left and the conservative right, it means that that person is probably right on target.”

Mr. Whitehead’s commentaries have appeared in the Los Angeles Times, New York Times, Washington Post, Washington Times and USA Today.

Wake The Flock Up! Please Share With Sheeple Far & Wide:
  • John C Carleton

    The present constitution was forced on Americans by elites. lawyers and bankers, so they could rape America and Americans.

    Worked well for them has it not.

    • ReneKRamirez


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    • Sam Nelson

      THE UNITED STATES COMPANY 1871 (all caps because that is the way it is written).

  • dav1bg

    The Patriot act was modeled after the Enabling Act of pre WW2 Germany. It really needs to be repealed.

    • Simon says

      when 80% or more of the populace is distracted and most uninformed in american history…

      one well named lie called legislation can rob so many freedoms in the blink of an eye…

    • SandraRHull


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    • roger

      with prejudice.

  • darkhorse

    REMOVE THE ZIONIST SUPREMACISTS FROM AMERICA…DISMANTLE THE “FEDERAL” RESERVE BANK. DISMANTLE THE IRS… IMPRISON ALL OF DC. THAT’S WHAT MUST BE DONE BEFORE ANYTHING ELSE IS DISCUSSED.

  • A dangerous road indeed and one that formally commenced 1787 when that cadre of Enlightenment and Masonic thinkers decided they knew better than their God and Creator and replaced the 17th-century Colonial governments of, by, and for God established upon His unchanging moral law for their own humanistic government of, by, and for the people based upon capricious man-made traditions. This has since been perpetuated and exasperated by well-meaning, bull ill-informed, Christians and Patriots.

    Idols die hard! In Acts 19, the Ephesians cried out for two solid hours “Great is Diana of the Ephesians!” Americans (tragically led by Christians) have been crying out for 230 years “Great is the Constitution of the Americans!” Keep in mind, idolatry is not so much about statues as it is statutes, such as what one considers the supreme law of land.

    Time to get back to what it was that in fact made America great again. America was once great but not for the reason most people believe it was. In fact, quite the opposite – a classic case of Isaiah 5:20, calling evil good and good evil.

    Yahweh, God of the Bible, blesses nations (makes them great and prosperous) when they look to Him as their sovereign and thus His moral law as the standard for government and society, per Deuteronomy 4:4-8, 28:1-14, etc. Consequently, America’s greatness was the result of the 17th-century Christian Colonial governments of, by, and for God established upon His unchanging moral law:

    Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America, 1835: “They [the 17th-century Colonials] exercised the rights of sovereignty; they named their magistrates, concluded peace or declared war, made police regulations, and enacted laws as if their allegiance was due only to God. Nothing can be more curious and, at the same time more instructive, than the legislation of that period; it is there that the solution of the great social problem which the United States now presents to the world is to be found [in perfect fulfillment of Deuteronomy 4:5-8, demonstrating the continuing veracity of Yahweh’s law and its accompanying blessings, per Deuteronomy 28:1-14].

    “Amongst these documents we shall notice, as especially characteristic, the code of laws promulgated by the little State of Connecticut in 1650. The legislators of Connecticut begin with the penal laws, and … they borrow their provisions from the text of Holy Writ … copied verbatim from the books of Exodus, Leviticus, and Deuteronomy.…” (Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America, 2 vols. (New York: NY: The Colonial Press, 1899) vol. 1, pp. 36-37)

    On the other hand, Yahweh curses nations who reject His sovereignty and replace His law with their own man-made surrogates. Thus, America began to be cursed (by God’s long suffering only incrementally at first) when the 18th-century founders replaced the 17th-century Colonial governments with their own humanistic government of, by, and for the people based upon capricious Enlightenment traditions. Without repentance for these sins of sedition our complicity therein, it was inevitable that America would find herself teetering on the precipice of moral depravity and destruction.

    For more regarding these two polar opposite forms of government, see online Chapter 3 “The Preamble: WE THE PEOPLE vs. YAHWEH” of “Bible Law vs. the United States Constitution: The Christian Perspective” at http://www.bibleversusconstitution.org/BlvcOnline/biblelaw-constitutionalism-pt3.html.

    Then find out how much you really know about the Constitution as compared to the Bible. Take our 10-question Constitution Survey at http://www.bibleversusconstitution.org/ConstitutionSurvey.html and receive a complimentary copy of a book that examines the Constitution by the Bible.

    • ReverendDraco✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ ᵃᶜᶜᵒᵘᶰᵗ

      Incoherenceman makes another appearance. . .

      Keep it in your pants, pervert.

      • Thanks for, once again, demonstrating the inspiration and veracity of the Bible, especially 1 Corinthians 2:12-13.

        • ReverendDraco✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ ᵃᶜᶜᵒᵘᶰᵗ

          Yeah, yeah – a conman tells you that smart people will call you on your bullshit – so that makes the rest of what the conman says, real.

          You fell for the oldest confidence game in existence. Well done, pervert.

    • Sam Nelson

      It is time to undo the “god” thingy, get rid of it, never to have it again. A thing can be created without a creator, take water for example, humans are an invention, invented by creatures in whose image we were made, but not gods. If we are women and men then they were women and men for we are made in their image. The most complete, reliable, authenticated, true, account of our origins are written in text older than any religion, older for sure than the modern day, edited, published and printed, bibles, korans, torahs, talmuds, etc.. The text with half a million examples yet to be translated, teach us of our origins and the origins of our inventors. I am writing about the Annunaki of course, who said we are not gods, we know nothing of our origins, we have always been. We know we were invented by the Annunaki because we have written proof of it, no magic, not like the religions insist on, a procedure, tried over and over again for a thousand years or more, until we were made, human. Invented to be slaves, to mine gold for the Annunaki, we are now, on our own. The world we live in is an invention, made before the Annunaki, made by some form we cannot know, but, not by magic, not by a thing like what we today call god, constructed, from a plan, made real, and it works for us. We do live on a flat Earth, we are under a dome, we know there are lands on the other side of the Poles, we know by whom and why we were invented. We know the trillions of dollars’ worth of wealth industry that is Religion in the world is killing us, has always killed us, is a lie, needs to be put away so a new life can be found for us and our children. Religion is deep in the right side of the brain, put there by years of brainwashing, not easy to remove or replace, but, it must be done and now. There is no doubt humanity has been living a dreadful illusion for all of its existence. Pushed and pulled by one idea or force or the other, until today the human brain is nearly inoperable, so tangled up is the wiring, the thinking, that few if any of us can really think of our own accord, in our own way. Today, insanity is epidemic. We are more slaves now, more than ever in our whole history of being, except we are no longer cared for, we must care for ourselves now. Caring for ourselves is something we can do if only we can get the obstacles out of our way. Obstacles, like the present day Leadership, like the present day system of wealth distribution, like the unjust, justice systems, the religions and the educational systems. Of course there will be a thousand years of fine tuning, but we need to do it now and not tomorrow. Tomorrow will be too late, you knew I was going to say that didn’t you? The systems we have been forced to work under have never put our existence, the existence of the living world, the Earth, first, last and always. Always, there has been a special interest, moving us this way or that way, shaking us up, beating us, killing us. We, the human kind have never known freedom. We, the people, we better get it right and quick, hey, the DUMBS are completed, the sides lined up, the great killing is about to commence. Prove this writing wrong if you can, just do something, this is what this writing is about, it is an attempt to do something for us and not against any of us. It is so apparent, changes must be made and quick, for we are being turned this way and that, like our weather, and so ominous is the future today.

  • Rog

    The constitutional government is still there, but its offices have been abandoned. In its place is a “governmental services” corporation. Since the legal maxim “different things shall not be mixed,” still holds true, a legal thing-corporation-can not interact with a living man, it must convert us into things. Enter the birth certificate. It creates a “person.” A thing. It is the thing that is charged. It is the thing that is taxed, it is the thing that is billed. Through countless adhesion contracts the corporation tricks us into being surety for the thing. We become subject to Roman law, law merchant, admiralty. We are not Men and Women to it, we are things. THAT is the problem.

  • Marathon-Youth

    “..In other words, we have the power to make and break the government. We are the masters and they are the servants.”

    One way to ensure that the government works for us is tie their salaries to the mean average income of the nation. At present it is around 57 thousand dollars. No Federal, state, county or city employee should earn more than 57, 000 dollars per year.

    If the average income rises so does theirs. If it drops then they lose income. That could ensure that these government workers do not impede our salaries with undue regulations. It will also prevent power and money seekers from running for office.

  • Sam Nelson

    The Banker King wants the world at war and he will have it. Everyone involved, a new kind of war, gentile against gentile, the whole world over. The Politicians and Judges paid real good for going along with it.