ELDER PATRIOT – Recently my son, with an expression mixed with sadness and exasperation observed of the American political system, ‘it’s so broken.” His lack of hope for the future concerns me deeply. We all recognize that our government is no longer working to protect the rights and opportunities of the people. The disagreements that exist between us are rooted in our personal prejudices and serve to determine how we vote. In actuality, recent elections have done nothing to shift the political landscape from, what appears to be, a predetermined move to greater government control over us. Leadership of both political parties vote in unison despite campaign promises to the contrary. Nothing stops the inexorable march towards the loss of our constitutionally guaranteed rights while the erosion our uniquely American culture continues at a dizzying pace. This series will examine how our predispositions towards solving various issues actually pit us against each weakening our resolve as a unified people.
Majority rule absent strong moral application is nothing more than mob rule. Our Founders were more than just mindful of this.
“We have staked the whole future of American civilization, not upon the power of government, far from it. We have staked the future of all our political institutions upon the capacity of mankind for self government; upon the capacity of each and all of us to govern ourselves, to control ourselves to sustain ourselves according to the Ten Commandments of God.” – From The Papers of James Madison Who is Widely Recognized as the Author of the Constitution
The only point of contention that any member of a responsible body politic could have with the Ten Commandments comes in the first commandment. A growing segment of our population, in their knee-jerk rejection of God, uses this to invalidate the entirety of the message. But, is this wise? Don’t these same people often argue that we must listen to our enemies because there may be some truth in what they say?
Leaving alone the First Commandment for now, what is it that should be rejected otherwise?
- You shall not make idols.
- You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain.
- Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy.
- Honor your father and your mother.
- You shall not murder.
- You shall not commit adultery.
- You shall not steal.
- You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
- You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, nor his male servant, nor his female servant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbor’s.
On its face, this is hardly a religious document. Instead, it appears to be a solid blueprint upon which to build your life and our society. In fact, it is the exact foundation the Founders build the great American experiment on. Rejecting this in its entirety merely because of the mention of God at the beginning is foolish especially in light of the fact that many who reject these common sense rules are willing to turn themselves in knots defending the words in foreign religious texts. It seems only religion in support of morality in our society is objectionable to some people.
Rejection of the principles expounded in the Ten Commandments has led to the general acceptance of moral equivalency between all of the world’s religions, political systems, and personal behaviors. While this might be a wonderful fantasy to contemplate for some, the long and extended years of American exceptionalism provide a contradictory argument. The ability of the American people to determine right from wrong without equivocation is what separated us from other societies and made us great. It has been in our blood throughout our history to reject moral relativity in favor of protecting our uniquely American culture.
Next, as we reject the Founders’ reliance on the Ten Commandments, in what direction is our culture is headed?