The liberty principle for this Freedom Friday is the fact that all Americans share the great responsibility of defending and maintaining our liberty. We are all responsible to keep watch against our enemies, both foreign and domestic.
"The first object of a free people is the preservation of their liberty…. The spirit of liberty is, indeed, a bold and fearless spirit; but it is also a sharp-sighted spirit; it is a cautious, sagacious, discriminating, far-seeing intelligence; it is jealous of encroachment, jealous of power, jealous of men. It demands checks; it seeks for guards; it insists on securities; it intrenches itself behind strong defences, and fortifies itself with all possible care against the assaults of ambition and passion. It does not trust the amiable weaknesses of human nature, and therefore it will not permit power to overstep its prescribed limits, though benevolence, good intent, and patriotic purpose come along with it." (Daniel Webster, May 7, 1834; Works 4:122, as quoted by Ezra Taft Benson in An Enemy Hath Done This, p. 323)
Ezra Taft Benson, United States Secretary of Agriculture under President Eisenhower, and later President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, spent much time and energy warning Americans about communism. He spoke about it in many different types of meetings - Church, civic, college, etc. In a speech given on February 11, 1966, at The Utah Forum for the American Idea, he listed ten ways that our Republic and Constitution are being destroyed all the while we are aiding the enemies of freedom. His list is as follows: "1) By diplomatic recognition and aid, and trade and negotiations with the communists. 2) By disarmament of our military defenses. 3) By destruction of our security laws and the promotion of atheism by decisions of the Supreme Court. 4) By loss of sovereignty and solvency through international commitments and membership in world organization. 5) By undermining of local law enforcement agencies and Congressional investigating committees. 6) By usurpations by the executive and judicial branches of our federal government. 7) By lawlessness in the name of civil rights. 8) By a staggering national debt with inflation and a corruption of the currency. 9) By a multiplicity of executive orders and federal programs which greatly weaken local and state governments. 10) By the sacrifice of American manhood by engaging in wars we apparently have no intention of winning."
As I read through Benson's list, I recognized that those encroachments are still being made! He spoke about these dangers more than 46 years ago, and yet we are facing them again now. Benson was not the only one warning Americans about the dangers of communism, but he was one of most well known. There were people in
who were openly criticizing
Benson. Liberal politicians did not want
Benson's message to get out to the public.
They were embarrassed and afraid for their political careers if these
facts were pointed out. They tried to
silence the patriotic voices that were crying out about the dangers. Washington, D.C.
Liberal politicians were not the only ones concerned about the rising patriotism in American.
was also concerned. Benson wrote,
"It was in 1960 when the communist leaders first decided to do something
drastic about the rising tide of patriotism in the Moscow . The loss of United States Cuba
to the Soviet Union had alerted
Americans. Citizens were holding study
groups, seminars and freedom schools.
The more they studied the more they realized how fast communism was
advancing on all fronts. They also
learned to their amazement that
politicians were doing practically nothing about it. In fact in many cases they were doing things
to promote communism. So the protests
began to pour into the national capitol from every state in the union. All over Washington there was an
Benson explained that Soviet leaders were very concerned about these happenings and called a meeting of communists from eighty-one countries. This convention of communists "issued an edict that the rising tide of patriotism and anti-communism must be smashed - especially in the
" in December,
1960. American patriots became the
objects of vile "hate propaganda and smear tactics" - not by foreign
communists but "in the name of influential Americans who espoused the
socialist-communist line." United States
"By 1962 these American liberals had almost completely neutralized the resurgence of American patriotism. They had frightened uninformed citizens away from study groups and patriotic rallies. They had made it popular to call patriotism a `controversial' subject which should not be discussed in school assemblies or churches.
"From Washington, D.C., the FCC (Federal Communications Commission) issued an edict to radio and television stations that if they allowed the controversial subjects of `Americanism,' `anti-communism,' or `states' rights' to be discussed on their stations they would be required to give equal time, free of charge, to anyone wishing to present an opposite view" (An Enemy Hath Does This, pp. 40-42).
Ezra Taft Benson, J. Edgar Hoover, and other patriots shouted the warnings about communism taking root in the
and supporters of communism apparently went underground. Today members of the TEA Party are crying out
for a return to constitutional principles.
They are disliked by all progressives and liberals and many of the
establishment Republicans. Being a
member of a TEA Party is being likened to an enemy of the nation! How would they be treated if they were
shouting warnings about communism? About
the same way! United States
In April 2012, freshmen Representative Allen West(R-FL) was asked, "What percentage of the American legislature do you think are card-carrying Marxists?" He answered, "That's a fair question. I believe there's about 78 to 81 members of the Democratic Party that are members of the Communist Party." He went on to say, "It's called the Congressional Progressive Caucus" according to his spokesman.
West spokeswoman Angela Marvin gave the following written statement to NBC News: "The Congressman was referring to the 76 members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus." The Communist Party has publicly referred to the Progressive Caucus as its allies. The Progressive Caucus speaks for itself. These individuals certainly aren't proponents of free markets or individual economic freedom."
West's office also referred to a statement on the Communist Party USA web site "where it says they made a mistake by turning `away from our allies in Congress, the Progressive Caucus, and John Conyers' during their fight for a single-payer system being included in Obama's health care law."
The Communist Party USA behaved much the same way as the communists of the 1960s: They denied the relationship. A leader at the Communist Party USA called West's statements "ridiculous" and "a cheap shot" and added, "We are supposed to live in a political democracy. I didn't know that being a Communist in Congress was off-limits or out of bounds. There aren't any now and if there were in the future does that mean that the voters don't have a say. Can't choose a Communist to be in Congress?"
The spokesman blamed the Tea Party for bringing up the idea of socialism and blaming Obama for being socialist. They claimed that the Tea Party put socialism on the agenda.
Representative West is a true patriot who has stood up for freedom, both in the military and in Congress. I believe that he is being marginalized by supporters of Communism. Besides, why would it be "okay" to have a communist in Congress? Why would we put a fox in the hen house? It is the same principle! We must be alert and remove all socialists and communists from our governing bodies. Even though few leaders are warning about communism at the current time, we can rest assured that communists have infiltrated every area of the American way of life. Americans must awake and arise in defense of our liberty!