Declaration of Independence

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. - That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.

Wednesday, June 30, 2021

Where Is the Compassion Promised by the Biden Administration?

             Former President Donald Trump visited the southern border today with Texas Governor Greg Abbott. They did not go to El Paso for a photo opportunity as did Vice President Kamara Harris, but they went to the “belly of the beast” – one of the places where hordes of illegal immigrants are crossing. Trump and Abbott met with the people working at the border and with the citizens being affected by the travelers crossing their property.

            Abbott has declared illegal immigration to be an emergency in his state, and his administration is taking steps to protect Texans and Americans. The situation at the border is a problem created by the Biden administration. They inherited the most secure border in the history of the nation where the streams of people had decreased to trickles – manageable numbers.

The Trump administration had done all the work and put in place all the policies. All the Biden administration needed to do was not mess it up – but they messed it up by changing all the policies and inviting hundreds of thousands of people to come into our nation illegally. The number of illegal immigrants that have crossed the border since January 20, 2021 – those that have been caught – have reached approximately one million. At least one million people have entered our nation in five and one-half months!

            While the Biden administration and its supporters are changing the makeup of our nation with thousands of new immigrants, they claim that opponents of their border policies are racist, xenophobic, or without compassion. They can add frustrated and angry for the people dealing with the border crisis. Stephanie Hubbell, a resident of Arizona, recently spoke with Shea Garrison

[The Biden administration] is giving a lot of false hope. [President Joe] Biden invited [illegal immigrants] over and they are sleeping in the streets in Gila Bend because facilities are all full. They bring them from Phoenix, dropping them off [by] the busloads. What they think they’re getting [doesn’t happen] and what they’ve been falsely promised by the Biden administration isn’t what is happening.

            Hubbell got the wrong end of the Biden promise. She arrived at her clothing boutique in Sonoita, Arizona, in early April to learn that traffickers of illegal immigrants had broken into it. The traffickers had recently been released from jail, and they stole money and merchandise and left behind drug paraphernalia.

            The Hubbell family have lived near the Arizona border for 17 years, but Hubbell has never seen a border crisis like the one created by Biden. There is a high level of criminality, a stark lack of law enforcement, and large numbers of illegal immigrants flooding into her community with no place to live or any food to eat. They come with the belief that they will receive food, health care, and lodging, and many of them get nothing.

            With the high numbers of immigrants coming, the Border Patrol stations are full. So, the government is spending American taxpayer money to buy hotel rooms. Some of them receive money and airline tickets – but many of them are left with nothing but empty promises.

            The Biden administration made lots of promises to lure the thousands of illegal immigrants here. Hubbell believes that the administration would have made better plans for the immigrants if they really had compassion for them. The hordes of people come, but they are on their own when they arrive. Since the Biden administrative refuses to act to correct the problem, we can only assume that they want the crisis to continue.

Tuesday, June 29, 2021

What Are Some of the Myths about Capitalism?

            Capitalism is a bad word and a bad economic system – if you listen to socialists. Representative Alexandria Occasion-Cortez (D-New York) made the following complaint: “No one ever makes a billion dollars. You take a billion dollars.” She obviously believes that capitalists get rich because they take money from other people. This is far from true.

            Someone once described the economy as a pie with everyone getting a piece. Some people think that there has to be someone who loses “pie” if anyone gets a bigger piece. This is not how the economy works. As the economy gets stronger, the “pie” gets bigger. Therefore, everyone’s piece of “pie” is larger.

            The problem with understanding the American economy is that there are so many myths about capitalism – what it is and how it works. John Stossel published two articles debunking the myths about capitalism. The first article can be found at this site,  and the second one can be found at this site.  Stossel debunks seven myths about the economy – three in the first article and four in the second. Here are his seven myths:

Myth #1: There is a finite amount of money in the world – when one person wins, someone else must lose.

Free markets increase total wealth. Competition encourages entrepreneurs to find new ways to release more value from both people and resources.

Because capitalism is voluntary and consumers have choices, the only way capitalists can get rich is to offer us something that we believe is better than we had before.

That creates new wealth…

Myth #2: The rich are getting richer, while the poor get poorer.

… Research shows that entrepreneurs only keep 2.2% of the additional wealth they generate. “In other words, the rest of us captured almost 98% of the benefits,” says economist Dan Mitchell of the Center for Freedom and Prosperity.

“I hope that we get 100 new super billionaires,” he adds, “Because that means 100 new people have figured out was to make the rest of our lives better off….

… Yes, the rich got lots richer, but the poor and middle class got richer, too.

“The economic pie grows,” says Mitchell. “We are much richer than our grandparents, and our grandparents were much richer than their grandparents.”

For thousands of years, the world had almost no wealth creation. Only when some countries tried capitalism did GDP grow.

Capitalists helped everyone, including the poor….

Myth #3: The middle class is in decline.

It’s true, Mitchell points out. “Its shrinking because more people move into upper-income quintiles! The rich get richer in a capitalist society. But guess what? The rest of us get richer as well.”

Myth #4: Capitalism creates unsafe workspaces.

… It’s logical to assume that government regulation saves lives. Workplace deaths dropped after the Occupational Safety and Health Administration was created. Government officials like showing a graph of the decline.

But if you bother to also look at data from before the agency’s creation, you see that deaths fell at the same rate before regulation began. Why?

“As we become richer, we become safer,” says Dan Mitchell of the Center for Freedom and Prosperity.

Wealth created by capitalism lets us afford safety devices and build machines to do dangerous work. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is like someone jumping in front of a parade and claiming he led the parade.

“We need more capitalism because when people get rich, they can afford more safety,” adds Mitchell.

Myth #5: “Unfettered” capitalism created evil “robber barons” who got rich by “exploiting” workers and consumers.

It’s true that more than 100 years ago, a few entrepreneurs, such as John D. Rockefeller, amassed a huge amount of wealth.

But Rockefeller was neither robber nor baron. He was not born rich, and he didn’t rob. He got rich by offering consumers better deals.

Rockefeller developed ways to deliver oil for less. He won customers by lowering the price of kerosene from 26 cents per gallon to about 6 cents.

For the first time, average people could afford fuel for lanterns so they could read after dark. Rockefeller may have even “saved the whales” by making oil so cheap that killing whales to get whale oil was no longer practical….

Cornelius Vanderbilt was also born poor. At age 11, he quit school to work on boats.

Then he invented ways to make travel cheaper. He cut the New York-Hartford fare from $5 to $1.

Because of capitalists like them, Mitchell points out, “We went from agricultural poverty to a country characterized by middle-class prosperity.”

Myth #6: Even if capitalism brings us cheaper or better products, it just isn’t “good for us.”

Of course, capitalism can breed nasty materialism…

Mitchell responds, “We’re not buy iPhones and plastic garbage unless we think it’s better for us than the dollars that we have!”

That’s a very important point. No capitalist gets our money unless we voluntarily choose to exchange it for whatever he’s selling. As Mitchell puts it, “Capitalism is the only system that gives people the liberty to make their own choices.”

Myth #7: Capitalism’s pursuit of profit drives businesses to create robots that will eventually take away most everyone’s job.

It could happen. Artificial intelligence is powerful. Maybe this time is different.

But again and again, experts predicted that employment was about to decline – and again and again, they’ve been wrong.

Some people do lose jobs. Capitalism promotes creative destruction.

It’s terrible for the fired employee.

But it’s good for most everyone else. It’s what allows for innovation.

Mitchell points out, “The computer destroyed the typewriter builder’s job, electricity took candlemakers’ jobs,” but those jobs were soon replaced with better ones.

Capitalism has continually generated more jobs. When America began, 90% of workers worked on farms. Now fewer than 2% do. And there are millions more of us.

“As long as our economy has the dynamism that free markets allow,” says Mitchell, “we’re going to see more job creation and higher income levels. That’s what makes the children and grandchildren of typewriter makers so much better off. No other system anywhere in the world has ever come close to capitalism’s ability to generate mass prosperity.”

            Here is a video where AEI President Arthur Brooks explains how capitalism is the single greatest force to pull people out of poverty. The Case for Capitalism | The Daily Signal - YouTube

            I have an example capitalistic success within my own family. My son became an entrepreneur with an idea that could help other people. His company grew, so he hired his sister and divided his workload.  The company continued to grow, so he hired another sister and divided more of the workload. He split the ownership of the company with his wife and brought her on board with some of the responsibilities. There are at least three or four other people working for him. He has become rich on his idea and work, but he has also increased the wealth of several other families. I know that capitalism works and is a good thing!

Monday, June 28, 2021

Who Is Dan Crenshaw?

             My VIP for this week is Representative Dan Crenshaw (R-Texas). Today he said what most Americans must be saying about U.S. hammer thrower Gwen Berry. During a medal ceremony on Saturday, bronze-medal winner Berry “turned her back to the flag and draped a T-shirt with the phrase ‘Activist Athlete’ over her head while the national anthem played.

            Berry’s action was obviously a protest against the national anthem. Crenshaw declared that Berry should be “removed from the team” for showing disrespect to the flag. 

We don’t need any more activist athletes. You know, she should be removed from the team. The entire point of the Olympic team is to represent the United States of America. That’s the entire point, OK.

So it’s one thing when these NBA players do it – OK, fine, we’ll just stop watching – but now the Olympic team?” And it’s multiple cases of this. They should be removed. That should be the bare minimum requirement.

            If Berry does not like the flag and the national anthem of the United States of America, she should not be allowed to represent our nation. We deserve to be represented by people who love America and will do their best to represent us well in every way. I agree that Berry and all other “activist athletes” should be kicked off all national teams.

Sunday, June 27, 2021

What Is the Real Reason for the DOJ’s Lawsuit Against the State of Georgia?

             The topic of discussion for this Constitution Monday concerns the federal lawsuit against the State of Georgia. The Department of Justice announced on Friday that it had filed a lawsuit against the State of Georgia, the Georgia Secretary of State, and the Georgia State Election Board to stop racially discriminatory provisions of the Georgia Senate Bill 202. The DOJ is challenging the provisions of the Bill under Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act. Attorney General Merrick B. Garland made the following statement. 

The right of all eligible citizens to vote is the central pillar of our democracy, the right from which all other rights ultimately flow. This lawsuit is the first step of many we are taking to ensure that all eligible voters can cast a vote; that all lawful votes are counted; and that every voter has access to accurate information.

The right to vote is one of the most central rights in our democracy and protecting the right to vote for all Americans is t the core of the Civil Rights Division’s mission. The Department of Justice will use all the tools it has available to ensure that each eligible citizen can register, cast a ballot, and have that ballot counted free form racial discrimination. Law adopted with a racially motivated purpose, like Georgia Senate Bill 202, simple have no place in democracy today.

One of the fundamental rights of our democracy is the right to vote. That right should be protected for every citizen of our district, regardless of

            No one argues that every citizen has a right to vote without regard to race, ethnicity, religious, sex, or any number of reasons. However, the Georgia law merely requires that voters prove that they are who they say that they are. The law has nothing to do with race, and it is supported more by the people of color than it is by white people. However, it has been subject to dishonest attacks from both the mainstream media and Democrats and has been compared to laws known as “Jim Crow.” It appears that the DOJ does not approve of the requirement to ask for identification before being allowed to vote. Its claims parrot claims from Democrats about the law abridging the voting rights of black people.

            Georgia Governor Brian Kemp (R) signed the bill into law, and he pushed back against the claims made by the DOJ: 

This lawsuit is born out of the lies and misinformation the Biden administration has pushed against Georgia’s Election Integrity Act from the start. Joe Biden, Stacey Abrams, and their allies tried to force an unconstitutional elections power grab through Congress – and failed. Now, they are weaponizing the U.S. Department of Justice to carry out their far-left agenda that undermines election integrity and empowers federal government overreach in our democracy.

            Liberal Professor Jonathan Turley of the George Washington University Law School believes that the DOJ’s decision to sue Georgia over the new voting law will backfire on the Biden administration and Democrats. When interviewed on “Fox and Friends,” he predicted that the Biden administration “may ultimately regret” the lawsuit.

I’m highly skeptical and I think they may ultimately regret this move. It could indeed clarify this issue in a way the Biden administration does not want. This is a very dubious case in my view because the Georgia law has great overlap with other states, like Delaware.

One of the issues that the court may ultimately amplify is that elections were left in the Constitution to the state. Alexander Hamilton actually wrote in the federalist papers imagine if the federal government was to take over the management of elections and he basically said we would all object. Well, that’s what’s happening now in Congress they are trying to essentially federalize elections and I think they are going to have a serious pushback on this lawsuit.

            What does the Constitution say about elections? “The Times, Places and Manner of holding Elections for Senators and Representatives, shall be prescribed in each State by the Legislature thereof; but the Congress may at any time by Law make or alter such Regulations, except as to the Places of chusing Senators” (Article I, Section 4, Clause 1). I agree with Turley. The DOJ may be regretting this lawsuit because the States are going to push back hard. 


Saturday, June 26, 2021

What Are the Expectations for Prophets When They Write and Speak for God?

             My Come, Follow Me studies took me to Doctrine and Covenants 67-70. The Prophet Joseph Smith received more than sixty revelations from the Lord by the fall of 1831. The decision was made to compile and publish the revelations to make them more accessible to members of the Church of Jesus Christ.

A conference was held on November 1-2, 1831, where some priesthood leaders discussed how to publish them. They decided to make one volume and title it the Book of Commandments. They first considered publishing 10,000 copies but later reduced the number of copies to 3,000. The Doctrine and Covenants Student Manual had the following information.

The Prophet intended to include in the Book of Commandments a written testimony from the elders declaring the truthfulness of the revelations in the same manner the Three Witnesses and the Eight Witnesses had testified of the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon. At one point in the conference, Joseph asked the elders “what testimony they were willing to attach to these commandments [revelations] which should shortly be sent to the world” (in The Joseph Smith Papers, Documents, Volume 2: July 1831-January 1833, ed. Matthew C. Godrey and others [2013], 97). Several of the brethren “arose and said that they were willing to testify to the world that they knew that [the revelations] were of the Lord” (in The Joseph Smith Papers, Documents, Volume 2: July 1831-January 1833, 97). However, some of the elders had not received such a spiritual conviction, and they hesitated to testify that the revelations were given by inspiration from God.

            Sometime during this conference, the Lord revealed the information that is now Section 1 of the Doctrine and Covenants. This section is known as the Lord’s preface to the doctrines, covenants, and commandments given in this dispensation. The Lord explained how revelation is given.

Behold, I am God and have spoken it; these commandments are of me, and were given unto my servants in their weakness, after the manner of their language, that they might come to understanding. (Doctrine and Covenants 1:24)

After the revelation was given, some of the elders questioned the language used in the revelations given to the Prophet because of the imperfections in language and composition. Even though the Prophet Joseph Smith lacked formal education and was not eloquent in speaking or writing, the Lord revealed truth to him and allowed him to express it “after the manner of [his] language” (Doctrine and Covenants 1:24). In response to the concerns of the brethren, the Prophet Joseph Smith received the revelation recorded in Doctrine and Covenants 67.

Your eyes have been upon my servant Joseph Smith, Jun., and his language you have known, and his imperfections you have known; and you have sought in your hearts knowledge that you might express beyond his language; this you also know.

Now, seek ye out of the Book of Commandments, even the least that is among them, and appoint him that is the most wise among you;

Or, if there be any among you that shall make one like unto it, then ye are justified in saying that ye do not know that they are true;

But if ye cannot make one like unto it, ye are under condemnation if ye do not bear record that they are true.

For ye know that there is no unrighteousness in them, and that which is righteous cometh down from above, from the Father of lights.

            The Lord challenged those men who thought that they could express themselves with more eloquence that the Prophet to appoint the wisest man among them. This man was to select the least revelation and write one “like unto it” (Doctrine and Covenants 67:6). William E. McLellin was a former schoolteacher, so he accepted the challenge. Joseph Smith described the efforts of McLellin to write a revelation as follows.

[William] E. McLellin … endeavored to write a [revelation] like unto one of the least of the Lord’s, but failed; it was an awful responsibility to write in the name of the Lord. The elders, and all present, that witnessed this vain attempt of a man to imitate the language of Jesus Christ, renewed their faith in the fulness of the gospel and in the truth of the commandments and revelations which the lord had given to the church through my instrumentality; and the elders signified a willingness to bear testimony of their truth to all the world” (in Manuscript History of the Church, vol. A-1, page 162,

            In Doctrine and Covenants 67:9, the Lord bore testimony to the men that the revelations came “down from above.” He told them that they were to bear record that the revelations were true or they would be under condemnation (see Doctrine and Covenants 67:8). After McLellin failed in his attempt to write a revelation, the brethren signed a statement bearing testimony of the revelations. This testimony with the names of the members of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles in 1835 is included in the introduction of the more recent editions of the Doctrine and Covenants.

Friday, June 25, 2021

Why Should We Control Anger?

            Families, communities, and nations are happier and healthier when everyone keeps their anger under control. President Gordon B. Hinckley taught, “Temper is a vicious and corrosive thing that destroys affection and casts out love” (Ensign, May 1991, 74). Anger is a tool of Satan, and he uses it to stir up contention in families, communities, and nations (see 2 Nephi 28:20; 3 Nephi 11:29; Moroni 9:3). Much of this post will come from the parent education program of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Strengthening the Family.

            Most people feel anger from time to time, but that is no reason for allowing anger to get out of control. Feelings of anger can be useful at times, such as alerting us to something that is wrong. It is important that we take appropriate action to prevent little problems from escalating. Sometimes problems are complex and beyond a simple solution. Parents must not give in to angry feelings and retaliate in ways that escalate conflict with their children.

Elder Lynn G. Robbins of the Seventy described anger as the “thought-sin that leads to hostile feelings or behavior. It is the detonator of road rage on the freeway, flareups in the sports arena, and domestic violence in homes” (Ensign, May 1998, 80-81).  President Gordon B. Hinckley warned of the tragic consequences of anger, asking, “Who can calculate the wounds inflicted, their depth and pain, by harsh and mean words spoken in anger?” (Ensign, Nov. 1991, 50). Throughout the world, angry parents assault their children verbally, physically, emotionally, and sexually. Each year, millions of cases alleging child abuse are reports to governmental agencies.

Anger is inappropriately handled in three ways—through aggression, internalization, and passive-aggressive behavior. When anger is expressed through aggression, it takes the form of physical violence, emotional and verbal abuse, or sexual abuse. When anger is internalized, it is pointed towards oneself and may lead to depression or self-damaging acts, including suicide attempts or self-mutilation. When anger is expressed through passive-aggressive behavior, it comes out in indirect actions, such as dishonesty, irritability, criticism, or procrastination. Angry parents may use intimidation to force children into obedience, but such children are more likely to rebel at some time in the future.

The long-term costs of venting anger are far greater than any possible benefits, particularly in families. People who cannot control their tempers will drive away the Holy Ghost, loss of respect, loss of friendship, loss of self-confidence, strained relationships, and serious problems with children (rebellion, fear of parents, failure in school). In addition, there are increased risks for problems such as depression, poor health, addictive behavior, and job-related concerns.

There can be many causes for anger, such as embarrassment, fear, hunger, or stress. Anger is like the tip of an iceberg. It is the angry outbursts that are seen, but the causes lurk under the surface.

There are also numerous ways to learn to control anger. The best and most important way is to discuss the problem with Heavenly Father in prayer and seek spiritual change. Other ways include the following: resolve the underlying problems, take responsibility for anger, identify the anger cycle, keep an anger log, defuse thoughts that provoke anger, leave the situation, discover activities that are calming, learn to share the underlying feelings that lead to anger, and continue the previous steps to prevent relapse.

            President Joseph F. Smith emphasized the importance of being kind to children instead of being angry: “When you speak or talk to them, do it not in anger, do it not harshly, in a condemning spirit. Speak to them kindly; . . . weep with them if necessary. . .. Soften their hearts; get them to feel tenderly toward you. Use no lash and no violence, but . . . approach them with reason, with persuasion and love unfeigned.” (Gospel Doctrine, 316) Parents can strengthen their families, communities, and nations by learning to control their own anger and then teaching their children to do so.

Thursday, June 24, 2021

Why Should Female Athletes Suffer for Biological Men’s Personal Problems?

             Forty-nine years ago on June 23, 1972, President Richard M. Nixon signed Title IX of the Education Amendments of1972, 20 U.S.C. §1681 et seq., into law. This law was passed primarily to protect the rights of women and girls in school or education programs that receive federal money. 

Title IX is a comprehensive federal law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in any federally funded education program or activity. The principal objective of Title IX is to avoid the use of federal money to support sex discrimination in education programs and to provide individual citizens effective protection against those practices.

Title IX applies, with a few specific exceptions, to all aspects of federally funded education programs or activities. In addition to traditional educational institutions such as colleges, universities, and elementary and secondary schools, Title IX also applies to any education or training program operated by a recipient of federal financial assistance.

The Department of Education issued regulations on the requirements of Title IX, 34 C.F.R. § 106.1et seq., in 2000. A Title IX common rule, published on August 30, 2000, covers education program providers/recipients that are funded by other federal agencies.

            According to Chris Field, this law forced equality for girls into school athletics. It created the same athletic opportunities for girls as is given to boys. Girls could have their own teams and could compete on a level playing field. It also required schools to offer equal facilities, bathrooms, and locker rooms for women. 

Title IX was a big deal when it was signed into law. Now biological males who think they are females are tossing in the garbage all the advances that Title IX brought to girls. They want to compete in female sports, where they usually win the competitions. They want to use women’s locker rooms and bathrooms. They are putting women at disadvantage once again as if Title IX had never been signed.

There is not much hope for girls and women at this point because the U.S. Department of Education is focused on the biological men who think they are women. Field wrote that a recent “Dear Educator” letter was sent to “explain” how all the advantages and protections that Title IX once provided to women are now to be extended to men who identify as women. The letter even gave specific examples of “harassment” that might be shown to such men.

I also want to bring to your attention OCR's public notice based on the Supreme Court's recent decision in Bostock v. Clayton County, 140 S. Ct. 1731, 590 U.S. ___ (2020), which clarifies that Title IX's protection against sex discrimination encompasses discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. Specifically, OCR clarifies that the Supreme Court's decision in Bostock applies to the Department's interpretation of Title IX. In its decision, the Supreme Court explained that “it is impossible to discriminate against a person" because of their sexual orientation or gender identity “without discriminating against that individual based on sex." Id. at 1741. That reasoning applies regardless of whether the individual is an adult in a workplace or a student in school.

Consistent with this notice, OCR will fully enforce Title IX to prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity in education programs and activities that receive Federal financial assistance from the Department.

            Biological men who think that they are women should have “a league of their own.” They should not compete against women, but they should compete against each other. Men have larger lungs, larger muscles, longer legs and arms, and other physical differences that are different than those of women. 

            Many of the men who are now competing against women were not talented enough to compete against men.  So, they decided that they could become “winners” by pretending to be women. There was a good reason why Title IX was signed into law, and it is the same reason why the protections for female athletes should be maintained.

Wednesday, June 23, 2021

Do Parents Like CRT?

            Parents across America are waking up to the indoctrination of their children with critical race theory. The leftists deny that indoctrination is taking place, but the parental revolt is building. As you probably already know, critical race theory or CRT uses the lens of race to frame every issue. Some races are “oppressors,” while other races are the “oppressed.”

            The proponents of CRT are able to move CRT into the curriculum because too many Americans do not have sufficient knowledge about civics or American history. Many Americans have no idea about the founding of America.

            Opponents of CRT are not opposed to students learning about slavery and racism. However, they believe that young Americans should know about the founding of America, why America entered World War II, what happened on D-Day, and America’s continuing war on tyranny both here in our nation and abroad. We want the rising generation to become informed patriots who love America.

            Governor Ron DeSantis is a Republican and a conservator who is fighting to keep CRT out of the schools in Florida. He recently signed legislation that prohibits critical race theory from being taught in Florida public schools. This week he signed three more education bills into law. Jarrett Stepman described the bills as follows:

One of the new laws will create a survey to provide a look at viewpoint diversity on Florida’s college campuses, as well as add protections for students’ free speech. Another requires that applicants pass a civics test to enter Florida’s public universities.

The third bill will require public K-12 schools to teach students about communism, totalitarianism, and other political systems that “conflict with the principles of freedom and democracy essential to the founding principles of the United States.”

            DeSantis said the following after signing the bills: “It’s crucial to ensure that we teach our students how to be responsible citizens. They need to have a good working knowledge of American history, American government, and the principles that underline our Constitution and Bill of Rights.”

We have a number of people in Florida, particularly southern Florida, who’ve escaped totalitarian regimes, who’ve escaped communist dictatorships to be able to come to America. We want all students to understand the difference; why would somebody flee across shark-infested waters, say, leaving from Cuba to come to southern Florida. Why would somebody leave a place like Vietnam? Why would people leave these countries and risk their life to be able to come here? It’s important students understand that.


Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Did the American Republic Dodge a Bullet Today?

             Today Senate Republicans blocked the Democrat attempt for a federal takeover of elections when their votes blocked further debate on the legislation. Democrat sponsors of the bill named it the “For the People Act,” but Republicans call it the “Corrupt Politicians Act.” The 50-50 vote was made on a straight party line. Sixty votes were needed to move the legislation to debate and a vote, so the bill is stopped for now.

            Republicans voted against the bill because it would ban most ID laws – which many of the states have recently passed. According to Fred Lucas, the bill would also “expand ballot harvesting, prevent the updating of voter registration lists, establish taxpayer-financed campaigns, and require states to allow same-day voter registration” – and more. 

            Of course, Democrats cast Republicans as suppressing voting rights and against democracy. Lucas quoted Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-New York) as immediately rising to share his point of view.

Once again, the Senate Republican minority has launched a partisan blockade of a pressing issue here in the United States Senate, an issue no less fundamental than the right to vote. This vote, I’m ashamed to say, is further evidence that voter suppression has become part of the official platform of the Republican Party.

In the fight for voting rights, this vote was the starting gun, not the finish line.

            Republicans were just as quick to call the vote a win. Lucas quoted Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) as saying the following.

This is a huge win for the citizens of the United States. This is a huge win for democracy, and it’s a huge win for the integrity of elections. The Corrupt Politicians Act is the most dangerous legislation we’ve considered in the nine years I’ve served in this body. It’s an attempt by Senate Democrats of a brazen power grab to federalize elections and to ensure Democrats won’t lose control for the next 100 years.

This bill isn’t about protecting the right to vote. It’s precisely the opposite. It’s about taking away the right to vote form the citizens and giving it instead to the corrupt politicians in Washington who want to stay in power.

            Senator Joe Manchin (D-West Virginia) and Senator Kyrsten Sinema (D-Arizona) enjoyed their fifteen-minutes of fame when they hinted that they would not vote for the bill. They seem to like the power of being known as “key swing votes in the divided Senate,” but they voted with Democrats as most people thought they would do.

            Cruz noted several acts already made by state legislatures: (1) 36 states have enacted voter ID laws – would have been repealed by the bill, (2) 75% of Americans support voter ID requirements (Rasmussen Reports), (3) 31 states prohibit ballot harvesting – would have been expanded by the bill, (4) created a partisan advantage on the Federal Election Commission – which has been divided equally between Democrats and Republicans since 1975. In addition, the bill would have required that congressional district boundaries would be determined by unelected redistricting commissions rather than by state legislatures in most states.

            Lucas said that the bill would also include “restrictions on political speech, such as requiring disclosure of donors to independent groups that buy political ads.” This would be similar to the 1950s requirement by some states who required donor disclosure demands on civil rights groups. “Under the provision, the government would contribute to the campaigns of federal candidates $6 for ever $1 raised in small donations – that is, for every donation under $200.”

            In addition, the bill would have given authority to “the Internal Revenue Service to investigate and consider the political and policy positions of nonprofit organizations when they apply for tax-exempt status.” Prior to the vote, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) described the bill as “a recipe for undermining confidence in our elections and remaking our entire system of government to satisfy one far end of the political spectrum.”

            Lucas quoted Hans von Spakovsky, manager of the Election Law Reform Initiative at The Heritage Foundation.

When it comes to our elections, policymakers should be focused on one goal: making it easier to vote and harder to cheat.

Sadly, this legislation does the opposite. In reality, this mammoth, leftist takeover of elections threatens election security and compromises every American’s fundamental right to vote.

It would require nationwide implementation of the worst changes in election rules from the 2020 election, and go even further in eroding and eliminating basic security protocols that states have in place.

            I believe that the United States of America dodged a huge bullet today when Republicans voted against the Corrupt Politicians Act. Schumer said that Democrats will continue to get such legislation passed, so this is no time for Republicans to let their guard down.

Monday, June 21, 2021

Who Is Greg Abbott?

             My VIP for this week is Texas Governor Greg Abbott. He is confined to a wheelchair because of an accident in his young adulthood. However, he has been standing tall for Texas residents and all Americans.

            Earlier this month, Abbott had a priority elections bill that would overhaul the voting rights in Texas. House Democrats walked out of the regular legislative session to break the quorum and block passage of Abbott’s bill, Senate Bill 7. This move by Democrats also killed another bill that Abbott wanted passed and earmarked it as a priority. 

            Governor Abbott refused to pay the legislators. His statement included a statement that “funding should not be provided for those who quit their job early, leaving their state with unfinished business and exposing taxpayers to higher costs for an additional legislative session.” If legislators – or anyone – want to be paid, they should complete the job!

            This is not the only time that Abbott stood tall. Abbott announced that Texas would step up to the task of protecting Texans and Americans because the Biden administration has failed to do the job of controlling the border. Abbott announced that Texas would build the wall along the border between Texas and Mexico. He set aside $250 million as a “down payment” to hire a project manager and contractors. 

            Abbott is not expecting all the expenses to come from the State’s funds. He expects part of the money to come from private and business donations and created a website where people can donate money to support the project. The State of Texas will donate land to construct the barrier, but Abbott is also relying on private landowners and local governments to “volunteer” or donate land for the wall.

            On June 1, Abbott prepared the way for the recent declaration when he declared a disaster in the 34 counties on or near the border with Mexico. He claimed that authorities were being overrun by “dangerous gangs and cartels [and] human traffickers.” He also claimed that the Biden administration had “abandoned its responsibilities to secure the border and Texans are suffering as a result.”

            In addition to building a barrier along the border, Abbott is threatening to arrest anyone who illegally crosses the border into Texas for “trespassing.” He promises to send them to jail for six to twelve months. He sent a request to the other 49 states requesting help to guard the border, and governors of Florida and Idaho have promised to send law enforcement personnel to help. Meanwhile, Abbott has activated the National Guard.

            When the federal government fails to secure the borders, states are still responsible to protect the people living in those states. The Republican governors in Texas and Arizona are stepping up to protect their states, while Democrat governors in New Mexico and California do not seem to care about the illegal immigrants trespassing in their states.

Sunday, June 20, 2021

Why Is Federalism Good for America?

            The topic of discussion for this Constitution Monday concerns federalism, just one of the genius ideas in the United States Constitution. The basic concept of federalism is a form of government where there is a balance of power between the national government and the state or local level. Federalism was first seen in the Articles of Confederation, where the various colonies focused on limiting the power in the Continental Congress. The Framers of the Constitution carried the idea of federalism into the Supreme Law of the Land for the new United States of America.

            From the beginning, the Framers did not intend for all the power to reside in the federal government. They never intended for all the decisions affecting citizens lives to be governed from a central point. The Constitution, including the Bill of Rights, was written in such a way as to control the federal government. It outlines the powers of the federal government, and the Tenth Amendment makes clear that any power not given directly to the federal government was to remain with the states or the people themselves.

The Tenth Amendment reads, “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.” However, the federal government continues to grow bigger and usurp authority from the states. Edwin J. Feulner, the founder and former president of The Heritage Foundation, wrote the following in August 2010: 

Growth of the Federal Government. The relative size of the various levels of government has changed dramatically since 1900. Then, almost 60% of government spending took place at the state and local levels. Today, the federal government spends more than twice as much as all other levels of government combined.

Centralization of Administration. Over the course of the 20th century, the administration of government has been increasingly centralized under the federal government, gathering particular momentum with the expansion of the regulatory state in the 1960s. The Federal Register, which contains the text of new federal regulations, notices, and decisions, ran to 22,877 pages in 1960; it was 68,598 pages in 2009.

Subsuming of States Under National Programs. Today, states increasingly administer policies and programs emanating from Washington, making them for the most part agents of a national administrative government that, in theory if not in fact, is unlimited and all-encompassing. As a result, states often act like supplicants seeking relief from the federal government.

A Renewed Threat. The policies of the current Administration and Congress – from massive spending to the takeover of whole industries to new regulatory initiatives and the resulting explosion of debt – have been especially threatening to and destructive of the idea and structural integrity of federalism.

            Former President Donald J. Trump recognized the federal regulations were stifling the economy, so he cut more than twice as many regulations as he signed. Once the federal government lost some or all the control of the economy, it began to soar – until COVID-19 came from China to shut down the nation. Meanwhile, States began clawing back authority. One example is the revolution that has taken place over the past 35 years.

Don Surber recently wrote about the gun revolution – a revolution won by Americans “state by state” and “Without firing a shot (except at the firing range).” He wrote, “Texas is the latest to join the freedom coalition” after Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed House Bill 1927 into law. This bill “eliminates the requirement for Texas residents to obtain a license to carry handguns if they’re not prohibited by state or federal law from possessing a gun.” This is “a big victory in Texas” for conservative activists who have long sought for such a law. It is also “another notch on the gun handle nationally.” 

            Surber continued, “35 years ago, it was illegal in 16 states (including Texas) for a civilian to carry a concealed weapon. Only Vermont did not require a pistol permit.” The revolution took place by “Working through the slow process of going state to state to change the law.” Surber includes charts to show how “Texas and many other states went from red (a ban on concealed carry) to yellow (may issue) to blue (shall issue) to green (no permission necessary).”

It is the Vermontization of America. The Green Mountain Boys always put the right to firearms off limits to regulation. Interesting state. For 14 years, it was a republic – longer than Texas and other states that were republics for a time.

The battle for the Second Amendment continues. From Massachusetts to Hawaii, there are clusters of holdouts who allow sheriffs to decide who shall have the right to defend himself.

But this gives Americans hope that they can regain their rights, state by state. The battle for the right to life for children continues, with states interceding on behalf of babies with deadlines for making the decision on abortion….

The success in the gun revolution should encourage those in the babies revolution.

            Thomas Lifson reviewed the material from Surber and then connected the gun revolution to states asserting their constitutional role in elections. He quoted Article I, Section 4, Clause 1: “The Times, Places and Manner of holding Elections for Senators and Representatives, shall be prescribed in each State by the Legislatures thereof; but the Congress may at any time by Law make or alter such Regulations, except as to the Places of chusing Senators.”

            When the Attorney General Merrick B. Garland threatened to take over the Arizona Senate audit for 2020 election results, the Arizona State Attorney Mark Brnovich reminded him that the legislatures of the states have authority over how elections are held in their state.

            Arizona is close to finishing its forensic audit, and Georgia starting one. Lifson said that “the Founders’ wisdom is on display” because “Pennsylvania is poised to join” the other two states. “The federal government may well be corrupted,” but “the states created the federal government.”

            Lifson counseled conservatives to not despair because liberals control “the White House, Congress, the media, academia, nonprofits.” He reminded his readers that “the Founders knew that state governments would always be closer to the people than the distant federal government. That’s why the Tenth Amendment … is so important.

With signs that the Supreme Court may be reacting against threats to pack it by issuing more 9-to-0 decisions, there is even the possibility that it will finally start enforcing the Tenth Amendment. That would be revolutionary, but well within the intent of the Founders.