Friday, June 2, 2006
Attacks on freedom are treasonous.
In 1776, a unique nation was founded when thirteen colonies declared independence from the British Empire. After a bloody war of secession, the men who pledged their lives, fortune and sacred honor formed a government that would be limited in scope and power. They did not want to face the tyranny of a king ever again and set up the Constitution, not a king or legislature, and the nation's highest authority.
On September 11, 2001, al Qaeda terrorists hijacked four passenger planes. They slammed two of those planes into the World Trade Center, destroying it. A third plane crashed into the Pentagon, but passengers on a fourth plane crashed it into a field rather than allow the terrorists to transform it into a missile. Several things motivated the senseless and brutal slaughter of 3000 people and the destruction of the World Trade Center, but the main motivation is that the terrorists hate freedom.
We are now engaged in a global War on Terror to fight the enemy that hates our freedom and wants to take it away. This war makes it ever more important to guard freedom and liberty here at home. Every single time any unit of government takes away the freedoms granted by God and protected by the Constitution, the terrorists win. There is no more effective way to provide aid and comfort to Islamic terrorists than to take away the freedom of the American people.
This brings me to an article in the Philadelphia Inquirer regarding the difficulty some high students are having in their attempt to establish a Bible club. Some parents are protesting the club because of the conservative views expressed on issues like homosexuality, fornication and abortion. They feel schools should be free of these issues.
Never mind that the Bible is very clear that God does not tolerate murder, and that the Word of God offers clear warnings against the sin of homosexual activity and sex outside of marriage. To these parents, it is OK for students to have a Bible club so long as they do not speak of what the Bible actually teaches. As long as they stick to the parts of the Bible that are not "offensive", the students will be allowed to have their First Amendment rights.
John 3:19-20 exposes the parents and students who wish to deny the free speech rights of these Christian young people. "And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved."
It is my belief that we need to get serious about this War on Terror. We need to truly honor the men who have their lives in order for us to have freedom. The best way to do that is to have a zero-tolerance policy toward government officials who commit treason against the Constitution by trying to restrict another's freedom. Any government official who violates someone's rights should be stripped of his or her citizenship and deported.
This is not to say there should not be regulations as to the time, place and manner of free speech. For example, you have the right to lobby your congressman, but you do not have the right to lobby him with a bullhorn outside his bedroom window at 3:00 a.m. The government school system's primary responsibility is to provide an education, and religious or political speech can be regulated to make sure there is not a significant disruption of the educational process. Clearly, harassment directed at individual students must never be tolerated.
Reasonable time, place and manner regulations are one thing, but restrictions on content are another thing entirely. The fact that someone's feelings are hurt is not and cannot be a reason to restrict the content of someone's speech. If that were to be the standard, then any speech at any time could be subject to censorship. Speech could swing from protected to illegal depending on how someone feels about it, with the rules changing daily. That is a betrayal of everything America stands for.