McDaniel’s Warped Ideas on Church/State Separation

Chris McDaniel is the Tea Party candidate running in the Republican primary to unseat Sen. Thad Cochran in Mississippi. In a recent appearance at an event he said some really dumb and incoherent things about separation of church and state.

The Tea Party candidate noted that Thomas Jefferson’s 1802 letter to the Danbury Baptists in Connecticut referenced “a wall of separation between church and state.” He said the phrase was later elevated into law through “judicial fiat” by Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black, who ruled that state-sanctioned prayer in public schools was unconstitutional.

“The court embarked on this terrible line of decisions,” he explained. “It started in ’47, then culminated in ’61 and ’62, even others up to the ’80s, where basically they shut down prayer in public schools. Prayer in public schools would not have been considered unconstitutional by your founders. It just wouldn’t have. If you’re an originalist and you look at the First Amendment, you understand the purpose behind the free exercise clause and the establishment clause, the government should be relatively neutral — particularly the federal government.”

Okay, so the religion clauses of the First Amendment mean that “the government should be relatively neutral” AND the government should force all children, regardless of their religious beliefs, to recite government-composed and enforced prayers. That word “relatively” must be doing a whole lot of work here. And he references originalism while completely denying the validity of a phrase that was used to describe those religion clauses by two of the most influential founding fathers (Jefferson wasn’t the only one to use it, Madison did too).

He also suggested a prayer delivered by a teacher shouldn’t be considered a state-sanctioned prayer.

“The key is, the Supreme Court doesn’t want the state to put its fingerprint on the prayer, to okay it,” he explained. “Okay, fine. If my kid prays at school, how is that a state action? If a teacher prays in front of her classroom, some may perceive it as such, but that doesn’t make it an official state action.”

Great. So a Muslim teacher can do Muslim prayers in front of the class and that’s not a violation of the First Amendment at all, right? Yeah, I didn’t think so.

"While in the Army, I was accused of having a bad attitude a couple of ..."

Looks Like Flynn Has Flipped on ..."
"I wouldn't give them credit if I was a payday loan-shark."

Pastor: Moore Liked Young Girls Because ..."

Browse Our Archives

Follow Us!


What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • matty1

    If what teachers (paid out of taxes) say in front of their class is not government sanctioned I take it then that he has no problem with them teaching evolution, global warming, sex ed. etc. After all it’s just the teacher expressing a personal opinion, which he is all for.

  • Al Dente

    Constitutional originalism – “This is my opinion about what the Constitution says and the Founding Fathers would all agree with me.” That’s a safe statement to make since the Founding Fathers are all dead and so can’t disagree.

  • blf

    So a Muslim teacher can do Muslim prayers in front of the class and that’s not a violation of the First Amendment at all, right?

    Won’t — cannot — happen. Such people, along with liberals, democrats and other non-thugs, pea-haters, liberals, Dalek drivers, and so on are obviously unqualified to be teachers.

  • http://atheist-faq.com Jasper of Maine

    Constitutional Originalism is like saying we should all use Windows 1.0 because that’s what Microsoft originally wanted.

    Maybe a better analogy would be that we should all use the original version of Linux, and open-source OS, because that’s what Linus originally wanted.

    Because apparently they, and the founding fathers, got it perfect, first try, and there’s no room for implications or ramifications to what’s written in the constitution that needs to be fleshed out by case law.

  • http://en.uncyclopedia.co/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    Chris McDaniel, and the many other Patriots® like him, continue to prove that the Tea Party is about economic issues.

  • Michael Heath

    Here’s an interesting article on the original meaning of the free exercise clause (PDF): http://goo.gl/n60zOP.

    I searched this out because I wrote the following regarding the Greece v Galloway government prayer case; where the majority ruled that coercion didn’t occur:

    Clearly and unequivocally, their [the plaintiffs] respective religious freedom rights were infringed upon … And yet all the analysis I’ve seen focused on whether government violates the establishment clause when it prays. … But what’s not arguable is that such prayers do infringe upon some people’s numerated constitutional religious freedom right, including mine.

    James Hanley made the following provocative claim in an attempt to rebut my argument (same link):

    The Free Exercise Clause is a more curious beast. It’s original purpose was primarily to protect state governments from overweening federal authority, leaving them free to create their own establishments if they so chose. So it was not–in its origins–an individual right.

    While the Munoz article I link to above reports that the original meaning of the free exercise clause is murky at best, it clearly falsifies the claim that one can claim with certainty, as James does above, that the predominant original purpose was a protection for states rather than individuals. As Munoz reports, especially James Madison was seeking to protect individuals’ religious freedom rights.

    I’m not surprised given my years of reading on church state issues; which is why I looked this article up. However by the time I finished the article that blog post thread was dead. So I re-address this point here.

    The most fascinating aspect of the Munoz article is how he finds that the 1st Congress did not intend to protect free exercise rights to the degree that limits Congress ability to draft generally applicable laws that infringe upon some people’s religious freedom rights. The 1st Congress addressed this controversy when drafting the 2nd Amendment. Should the free exercise clause have the legislative drafters of the Bill of Rights incorporate a conscientious objector right into the 2nd Amendment? Clearly they decided not to do that.

    Our blogger here, Ed Brayton, has long pointed out that the relevant precedents are congruent with the original purpose revealed by the 1st Congress’ drafting of the 2nd Amendment. That Congress did have the authority to draft some religious freedom limiting laws.

  • Michael Heath

    Al Dente writes:

    Constitutional originalism – “This is my opinion about what the Constitution says and the Founding Fathers would all agree with me.” That’s a safe statement to make since the Founding Fathers are all dead and so can’t disagree.

    Like any argument, including ones based on scientific theories, originalism can be abused to make a dishonest argument. But the blame needs to be directed on people making bad arguments, and not the practice of discerning the original meaning, purpose, and intentions of legislation when its credibly performed.

    The practice of originalism is frequently very enlightening and relevant when deciding constitutional controversies.

    If we consider the question on whether the 2nd Amendment intended to numerate an individual right to own and bear arms, we encountered two revealing originalist arguments in the Heller case. J. Stevens’ dissent provided ample evidence that the 2nd Amendment does not numerate such a right*. J. Scalia’s majority opinion required the use of logical fallacies to make the case such a right is numerated in the language; predominately the use of non sequiturs.

    *While the evidence compellingly argues in favor of Stevens on the numeration question; that doesn’t necessarily mean that the people have delegated sufficient authority to the government to prohibit ownership and use of all guns for a large jurisdiction, such as Washington D.C. – as was the case in Heller. I’m very skeptical such prohibitory authority exists when it comes to the exercise of many of our rights. So while I certainly wouldn’t join Scalia’s idiotic and delusional opinion, I too would have struck down the D.C. near-total gun ban as too far reaching.

  • http://artk.typepad.com ArtK

    I thought the wingnuts opposed relativism!

  • Michael Heath

    Jasper of Maine:

    Constitutional Originalism is like saying we should all use Windows 1.0 because that’s what Microsoft originally wanted.

    Maybe a better analogy would be that we should all use the original version of Linux, and open-source OS, because that’s what Linus originally wanted.

    Because apparently they, and the founding fathers, got it perfect, first try, and there’s no room for implications or ramifications to what’s written in the constitution that needs to be fleshed out by case law.

    Uh, no.

    When advocates immediately resort to an analogy (in this case two!) to make their case, rather than . . . oh, make their case; they often don’t have much of a case to make and at least unconsciously make that same conclusion.

    Analogies are fine for illustration of complex issues or when the advocate perceives people aren’t sufficiently appreciating the case being made. But they’re lousy substitutes for a conclusion based on factual premises within the context of compelling assumptions; i.e., a structurally sound argument.

    Lastly, originalism in no way requires the analyst to conclude that originalism provides the end-all answer or that the framers got it perfect. In fact the study of originalism provides a plethora of findings on how the founders got it wrong or drafted defective legislative when it came to clearly communicating. For example, Antonin Scalia’s book on originalism, A Matter of Interpretation IIRC, has guest writers; one of those demonstrates how poorly our Constitution is constructed relative to the post-WWII German constitution. The net results is that we have constant controversies regarding the meaning of the Constitution while Germany has few such problems getting people on the same page regarding the meaning of their Constitution (which IIRC was drafted at least partly by Americans).

  • grumpyoldfart

    Never mind. You are all safe. The sensible Christians will never let the zealots win this argument. Look at all the mainstream church leaders telling the fundies to settle down and behave properly. You’ve got nothing to worry about.

  • Pierce R. Butler

    It started in ’47, then culminated in ’61 and ’62, even others up to the ’80s…

    That word …

    Aw, whatthehell: Mississippians who know what “culminate” means were never going to vote for McDaniel anyway.

  • anubisprime

    They are so cute when they try to be clever!

  • comfychair

    From my local teevee newz folks: http://www.wtok.com/home/headlines/Palin-Campaigns-for-McDaniel-261323721.html

    I have no idea what idiocy you’ll find at that link, as I didn’t look at it, just copied/pasted the URL. I don’t have a strong enough stomach. But Palin + McDaniel + local newz has just got to = much banging of heads against desks.

    —–

    Michael Heath @ #9:

    Most people on the planet, even good people who are ‘on your side’ in these kinds of matters, do not have a PhD in Philosophy or … whatever. This is just how normal people talk and argue and work things out. You are clearly good at what you do, but it’s a bit intimidating to us lowly peasants sometimes. I don’t know about anybody else but more than once there was a post I would have liked to comment on, but you had already near-attacked someone else for making a normal person statement instead of a rarefied intellectually-approved statement, so I just moved on to avoid the inevitable verbal thwacking. And even as I write this, I’m sure there will be some scholarly explanation for why my concerns should be dismissed…

  • John Pieret

    Michael Heath:

    originalism in no way requires the analyst to conclude that originalism provides the end-all answer or that the framers got it perfect

    The genius of the people who wrote the American Constitution/Bill of Rights was (among other things) that they didn’t specify too exactly just what those rights were. This was a particular concern of Madison and the reason he originally opposed a Bill of Rights. If you listed a set of rights, you risked those being the only guaranteed rights. That was why they wrote the 9th Amendment:

    The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

    In short, most of the Bill of Rights was a statement of the (to the Founders) obvious rights people should have but not the be all and end all of the rights Americans can justly claim. The Founders knew that slavery was going to be a subject of human rights in the future … some of them might have seen that woman’s suffrage would be too … but what they saw was that they couldn’t tell what every just claim to rights in America would be in the future. They were wise enough to leave it to future generations to decide.

  • http://dontlinkmebro F [i’m not here, i’m gone]

    No one ever stopped a kid from praying in school as long as it was not interfering with anyone. Seriously, how would anyone even know?

    A teacher praying at a class is a violation. Not only are they an agent of the state, which makes it a legal violation, but they are also an instructor (having power), and have a captive audience. It’s a moral violation even if it were not illegal.

    Just surprised that one of these Constitution/ “Founding Father” worshipers has a problem with Jefferson. They normally just retcon history.

  • Michael Heath

    comfychair,

    Your general criticism is valid and warranted.

    My response to James Hanley was a response to him “thwacking” me in a prior post. He’s a professor, IIRC, of economics and political science. I think Dr. Hanley can handle it.

    My response to his “thwacking” was to go and do more research. And while I found his claim false, I also found my own defectively motivated reasoning had me wrongly concluding the free exercise clause provided broader protections than it actually does. The Munoz article has me realizing that the free exercise clause provides little protection from government imposing religion on me when a religion-friendly interpretation of the establishment clause has precedence. So I improved my own understanding based on Hanley’s defective criticism simply because it resulted in further inquiry. I think that’s healthy.

    My defense @ 7 & 9 of those who study history and make originalist arguments is based on the same motivations that has me defending climate scientists when they’re criticized for doing science. I oppose those who seek to suppress research and the arguments that emanate out of such research.

    But you are correct that I could, and should, respond more constructively in my criticisms.

  • John Pieret

    comfychair @ 15:

    you had already near-attacked someone else for making a normal person statement instead of a rarefied intellectually-approved statement, so I just moved on

    Trust me … don’t do that! Nobody here has that kind of influence! Not a single person here has any such status as to be above criticism … certainly not Michael Heath, myself, Ed or anyone else!

    If anyone is attacked for saying something sensible, people here will come to their defense more times than not.

  • John Pieret

    Michael Heath @ 18:

    Well said!

  • Michael Heath

    John Pieret in response to prior posts of mine:

    The genius of the people who wrote the American Constitution/Bill of Rights was (among other things) that they didn’t specify too exactly just what those rights were. This was a particular concern of Madison and the reason he originally opposed a Bill of Rights. If you listed a set of rights, you risked those being the only guaranteed rights. That was why they wrote the 9th Amendment: The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

    In short, most of the Bill of Rights was a statement of the (to the Founders) obvious rights people should have but not the be all and end all of the rights Americans can justly claim. The Founders knew that slavery was going to be a subject of human rights in the future … some of them might have seen that woman’s suffrage would be too … but what they saw was that they couldn’t tell what every just claim to rights in America would be in the future. They were wise enough to leave it to future generations to decide.

    I’m not sure what your point here is. I certainly am both cognizant and accept what you argue where nothing I wrote previously contradicts your points here.

    Are you attempting to suggest that originalism demands that its adherents can’t consider other interpretative methods? Because it most certainly does not; perhaps only a mere handful think that. Not even Antonin Scalia belongs in that extremist camp. As I pointed out earlier, Justice Stevens leveraged an originalist approach for his dissent in Heller where Stevens in no way limits himself to originalist premises to craft his opinions; to the point he’s not even identified as an originalist.

  • John Pieret

    Michael Heath @ 21:

    Sorry, Michael … next time I’ll make it clear when I am agreeing with you but expanding a little.

  • Michael Heath

    Ah, I now see John Pieret’s merely pointing out that originalism can’t be the end-all of interpretative techniques. He’s certainly right about that given the structure of the Constitution is more philosophical than statutory.

    And while I’m a fan of originalist analysis, because history, my favorite opinions come from J. Stevens.

  • khms

    The genius of the people who wrote the American Constitution/Bill of Rights was (among other things) that they didn’t specify too exactly just what those rights were. This was a particular concern of Madison and the reason he originally opposed a Bill of Rights. If you listed a set of rights, you risked those being the only guaranteed rights. That was why they wrote the 9th Amendment:

    The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

    In short, most of the Bill of Rights was a statement of the (to the Founders) obvious rights people should have but not the be all and end all of the rights Americans can justly claim. The Founders knew that slavery was going to be a subject of human rights in the future … some of them might have seen that woman’s suffrage would be too … but what they saw was that they couldn’t tell what every just claim to rights in America would be in the future. They were wise enough to leave it to future generations to decide.

    Hmm. I remember no such disclaimer from the German constitution, but that hasn’t stopped us from acquiring a right to informational self-determination, first through a supreme court ruling on census (1983 [BVerfGE 65, 1]), then later via the EU basic rights charta. (Plans to putt a corresponding article in our constitution so far haven’t gotten the requisite majority (2/3)). That’s the source of the German data protection legislation, and a strong influence on the corresponding EU rights.

    On the other hand, our constitutional right to asylum hasn’t stopped that same kind of majority from essentially neutering it.

  • John Pieret

    khms @ 24:

    I am not claiming that the American Founders are the sole geniuses when it comes to representative government. Only that they did pretty good given their time and place and their ability to predict the future. I never meant to denigrate the German or any other constitution. Those will have to stand the test of time as ours has … not so badly, when compared to others … but that is no proof that it is “better” than the others.

  • howardhershey

    I thought it was interesting that the Everson decision in 1947, which I presume is the 1947 decision in question, was actually a partial victory for the entanglement of state and religion in that it ruled that the State of NJ could provide transportation funds to parents of parochial (nearly all Catholic in this case) students as long as it did it for all students. However, it also specified a broad interpretation of the Establishment Clause and ruled that State rules must follow that interpretation. Hugo Black wrote:

    “The ‘establishment of religion’ clause of the First Amendment means at least this: Neither a state nor the Federal Government can set up a church. Neither can pass laws which aid one religion, aid all religions or prefer one religion over another. Neither can force nor influence a person to go to or to remain away from church against his will or force him to profess a belief or disbelief in any religion. No person can be punished for entertaining or professing religious beliefs or disbeliefs, for church attendance or non-attendance. No tax in any amount, large or small, can be levied to support any religious activities or institutions, whatever they may be called, or whatever form they may adopt to teach or practice religion. 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.'”

    The ruling in favor of the Catholic position was 5:4. The dissenters and proponents agreed with the defining of the Establishment Clause above, but thought that the subsidy for transportation represented a “tax subsidy” to religion.

    Evangelicals hate this interpretation of the Establishment Clause *and* the fact that it applies to the States (they also hate the 13th thru 15th Amendments that gutted the excuse of States Rights as an excuse for abrogating individual rights). More whining about losing a Civil War.

  • StevoR : Free West Papua, free Tibet, let the Chagossians return!

    Prayer in public schools would not have been considered unconstitutional by your founders. It just wouldn’t have.

    Were public schools something they even had back in that era? At all?

  • http://en.uncyclopedia.co/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    John Pieret “Trust me … don’t do that! Nobody here has that kind of influence! Not a single person here has any such status as to be above criticism … certainly not Michael Heath, myself, Ed or anyone else!”

    What about the guy over there in the corner, in the lion suit?

  • John Pieret

    howardhershey @ 26:

    I actually found that Justice Black’s eloquent summation could be put as the:

    10 Commandments of the Separation of Church and State:

    1. Neither a state nor the Federal Government can set up a church.

    2. Neither a state nor the Federal Government can pass laws which aid one religion, aid all religions, or prefer one religion over another.

    3. Neither a state nor the Federal Government can force nor influence a person to go to or to remain away from church against his will.

    4. Neither a state nor the Federal Government can force a person to profess a belief or disbelief in any religion.

    5. No person can be punished for entertaining or professing religious beliefs.

    6. No person can be punished for entertaining or professing religious disbeliefs.

    7. No person can be punished for church attendance or non-attendance.

    8. No tax in any amount, large or small, can be levied to support any religious activities or institutions, whatever they may be called, or whatever form they may adopt to teach or practice religion.

    9. Neither a state nor the Federal Government can, openly or secretly, participate in the affairs of any religious organizations or groups.

    10. No religious organizations or groups can, openly or secretly, participate in the affairs of a state or the Federal Government.

  • John Pieret

    Modus:

    What about the guy over there in the corner, in the lion suit?

    Depends on how many moth holes there are in the suit.

  • dingojack

    OT Alert…. OT Alert…. OT Alert….

    Just to address our spambot:

    $19,782 per month is $237,384 per year or $4,549.45 per week.

    At $83 an hour that’d require working 54 hours, 48 minutes & 45.7 seconds per week, or 7 hours, 49 minutes & 49.4 seconds per day in a seven-day week (more than 10 hours per day if working only 5 days a week). Apparently that’s considered ‘working on the internet for a few hours’ in spam-land.

    Maths, how doez it wurk? @@

    Dingo

  • http://polrant@blogspot.com democommie

    “If anyone is attacked for saying something sensible, people here will come to their defense more times than not.”

    It doesn’t even gotta be sensible, it’s just gotta be less simplistically stupid than the asshattery uttered by the KKKristobot troll de jour–a low bar, to be sure–

    “so I just moved on to avoid the inevitable verbal thwacking.”

    Sticks’n’stones may break my bones but verbal thwacking can never hurt me!

    Michael Heath is the guy who reads EVERYTHING he can find on a given subjecft. I’m the guy who reads everything I LIKE. It makes for spirited if asymmetrical argumentatiousness.

    “My response to James Hanley was a response to him “thwacking” me in a prior post. He’s a professor, IIRC, of economics and political science. I think Dr. Hanley can handle it.”

    Boy, can he handle it! Just like this guy:

    http://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=Tom+Cruise+and+Jack+Nicholson%2c+%22You+can't+handle+the+truth!%22&FORM=VIRE7#view=detail&mid=85F2E7360FBCD898308385F2E7360FBCD8983083

    at about 45 seconds in.

    James Hanley “verbally thwacked” me too a few years back when I told him that rather than cast a meaningless vote one should just stick a gun in their mouth and pull the trigger. He told me that in my case, it might be the right thing. Well, I tell you, I was shocked and dismayed but it made me stop and take stock of where my life in the blogosphere was headed and I changed, I became the reasonable, temperate and reserved commenter that I am today. As on that fateful day, I sometimes want to stick a gun in my mouth and pull the trigger, but it’s no longer the Ruger Blackhawk in .44 Mag,. stuffed with 355 grain “Enforcer” hand loads. No, I now type one handed while caressing my “precious” a Super Soaker Switch Shot Blaster, loaded with a custom blend of tequila, bourbon, scotch, rum and Jaegermeister with just a touch of Dr. McGillicuddy’s schnapps* which I use to “clear my head” from time to time. True story.

    McDaniels’ views, btw, only seem “warped” to us; the normal, sane people. Not his target audience.

    * I really wanted to do Pina Colada’s but they kept fouling the barrel with the coconut flakes.

  • Al Dente

    Modusoperandi @28

    What about the guy over there in the corner, in the lion suit?

    I’ll take care of him. As an accountant who wants to be a lion tamer (I’ve got my own hat) I know how to deal with pseudo-lions.

  • D. C. Sessions

    Were public schools something they even had back in that era? At all?

    Yes and no. They were extremely common in New England (the responsibility of every town, for instance) and nearly nonexistent in the South, where the Bible was all the poor whites needed (obviously, slaves didn’t need any larnin’ at all.) The wealthy could afford private schooling at less cost than their share of any public schooling would have been.

    Over the middle part of the Twentieth Century the trend was towards the New England approach, but it’s swinging back now towards the Southern one.

  • Pierce R. Butler

    No story about the McDaniel campaign is complete without a look at “Constitutional Clayton” Kelly, the McDaniel volunteer and blogger who was recently arrested for trying to sneak into the nursing home where Sen. Cochran’s wife lives (in a persistent vegetative state). Three others, some also in McDaniel’s campaign crew, including one attorney, have so far had their rights read to them in this case.

    McDaniel – a teabagger’s teabagger – has apparently been spreading rumors that Cochran has a mistress in DC, as part of the campaign theme that the incumbent has sold out to the Washington establishment and “abandoned” both his wife and Mississippi. Kelly and the others reportedly thought a video of Rose Cochran languishing alone would bring that accusation to life, but were – who’d a thunkit? – no more capable than James O’Keefe at executing their brilliant plan.

    Amazingly, at least for non-Mississippians, this appalling/absurd episode has barely scratched McDaniel in the polls.

  • http://polrant@blogspot.com democommie

    @33:

    “Amazingly, at least for non-Mississippians, this appalling/absurd episode has barely scratched McDaniel in the polls.”

    If Thad Cockroach had a serviceable brain, he’d use his D.C. contacts to make common cause with the Athehomofascist “Broken Arrow* Brown Shirts Brigade. They could mount a campaign to impugn McDaniel’s character by taking photos of reptilican lawmakers in flagrante delicioso with their clandestine agents and “shopping” McDaniels into said photo. OTOH, they may HAVE those photos already!

    *http://www.benjaminmoore.com/en-us/paint-color/brokenarrow

  • Marcia Barlow

    Reading through the posts here, I don’t see why there is so much animosity toward the Tea Paryt and McDaniel. No, I’m not a constitutional scholar. I have only what was taught to me nearly 60 years ago concerning separation of church and state, the Bill of Rights, and the problem with public education.

    Back in my time of the dinosaurs, we were taught the there should be no establishment of a religion made by either the state or federal government. We had the freedom of choice. Prayer was freely given in public school, and no one was required to participate. If we did not include ourselves in the religious crowd, we stood quietly out of respect for the right of those who did participate. Simple. No one needed a law or a court case, and definitely not the Supreme Court.

    Democrats, Republicans, and Independents didn’t make up a name toward the other to try to depreciate their point of view. Libertarians weren’t known as civil liberties weren’t being challenged in those days. The Bill of Rights was as iit was, and it was recognized and agreed upon. A lot of uncomfortable things happened when McCarthy came on the scene. In the 1950’s our big battle was having the Federal Government fund public education, as the belief was the Federal Government would start dictating curriculum, which they did do. Many believed this would be a way the people of the United States would have their country undermined. All that would be needed to have that happen was a group of politicians to be voted into office and have those politicians start changing the teachings to the youngsters to something other than a constitutional republic, or capitalist economic system, Those were the days of agreement. Welfare systems were run primarily by churches with only a small portion being operated under the Federal Government.

    I’m sorry if this is coming across as a bit disjointed, but 2 strokes have taken their toll on me.

    Over time unwise decisions by, primarily, the Federal Government, has created a terrible mess for us all. They have done the job of bankrupting us all, but no matter to them. They pass the cost of that on to us, our children, and our grandchildren, while sheltering themselves.

    My desire is to maintain the free country I grew up in. I see that being destroyed by politicians dot doing the job they gave an oath to do: protect the borders, protect the currency, protect the constitution Arguments against the constitution or bill of rights should not be posed by politician or president. It’s a conflict of interest to on one hand protect something and on the other hand work to destroy it.

    That’s all I can say for now, as I am old and forget concepts as quickly as I think of them. I wish all of you well. Try not to call names, but to, instead, get into the thought processes of those whom you think you might be opposing. There might just be some pearls there.