Pastor Roger Anghis
February 5, 2012
When you read the Declaration of Independence you will read what has been called one of the most inspiring sentences devised by man: “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.” America became the envy of the world because its citizens were allowed to enjoy these God given rights. At that time in history rulers of nations did not allow their citizens these rights. Only aristocracy enjoyed the privileges of property ownership, freedom to do what they wanted to do whether it was to own a business or get an education. In America they could pursue that education, be a farmer or a carpenter, doctor, lawyer or engineer. The choice was theirs to make and the only thing that could stop them was themselves.
In America there was freedom of religion. You could worship how you pleased. In Europe many nations required that you be Catholic and only Catholic. In England you were required to support the Church of England, whether you wanted to or not. Many people were put to death for printing a Bible that wasn’t approved by the Church of England. Even in America before the Revolutionary War the only Bible that was allowed was the King James Version. America was not even allowed to print Bibles on our own soil until after the Revolutionary War. Then Congress allocated funds to have a Bible printed for the people of America.
In America you can own property and that, even today, is not something that everyone can do. When an individual owns property is gives him the power to do what he wants with that property. In our Constitution’s 5th Amendment states: “No person shall. . . be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law, nor shall private property be taken for public use without just compensation.” A few years back the Supreme Court destroyed our constitutional rights concerning private property. It has always been accepted that if a city or town needs property for a school, library or highway that the city could exercise what is called imminent domain to acquire that property. However this case went one step further and confiscated property, homes from homeowners, to build more housing and shopping a center. The reason the city gave was that it would be good for the city’s ‘economic development’. The case is explained as follows from Wikipedia:
Kelo v. City of New London, 545 U.S. 469 (2005) was a case decided by the Supreme Court of the United States involving the use of eminent domain to transfer land from one private owner to another to further economic development. The case arose from the condemnation by New London, Connecticut, of privately owned real property so that it could be used as part of a comprehensive redevelopment plan which promised 3,169 new jobs and $1.2 million a year in tax revenues. The Court held in a 5–4 decision that the general benefits a community enjoyed from economic growth qualified such redevelopment plans as a permissible "public use" under the Takings Clause of the Fifth Amendment.
The city eventually agreed to move Susette Kelo's house to a new location and to pay substantial additional compensation to other homeowners. The redeveloper was unable to obtain financing and abandoned the redevelopment project, leaving the land as an empty lot, which was eventually turned into a dump by the city.
It is quite clear that our Founders would not have allowed this case to proceed to any court let alone the Supreme Court. Though ‘economic development’ is essential to every city, this is nothing but blatant overstepping of our constitutional rights. I personally know of a man who bought several acres of land 30 years ago along a road that was destined for commercial development. He had an offer of $4 million for the land from a developer but the zoning wasn’t what the developer needed. When he tried to re-zone the property the city refused because they wanted that piece of property for ‘open space’. They offered him $1 million for it and when he refused they said that they would do imminent domain for 10 cents of the dollar if he didn’t take their offer. That is legalized theft. I don’t have a problem with the city buying property, but if the appraised value is a certain figure, then that is what they should pay not 10 cents on the dollar. This needs to be corrected. If it takes a law that must be passed declaring that fair market value must be paid then the people must demand that the law be passed. Legislated theft is still theft. We sit back and do nothing.
Our Constitution states in Article 4, Section 4 – ‘The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a republican form of government and shall protect each of them against invasion.’ There are several areas along our border with Mexico where the government has simply posted signs warning American’s to not access American territory because there is a danger of drug runners and human traffickers in the area. That is property of the United States and if there is that kind of activity, then the government is constitutionally obligated to correct it. The people are not demanding that our border is protected properly and consequently, it isn’t. No president since Eisenhower has done much about the illegal traffic across our southern border. We the people need to begin to demand that the government uphold its constitutional obligations.
We continue to allow the government to either ignore its constitutional obligations to us or we let them take our constitutional rights away from us without a fight. TSA illegally searches passengers at the airport and now they have expanded to bus stations and spot checks on highways. This is just like the old USSR where you were searched whenever you traveled across the nation. Our 4th Amendment states: ‘The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue but upon probable cause supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched and the persons or things to be seized.’ Random searches without warrants are happening thousands of times every day at every airport in America. We complain a little but that is all. I recently flew to Los Vegas for a wedding and on my return flight out of hundreds of passengers going through security a TSA agent looked at my shirt, it had an American flag on it, and I had to go through their x-ray machine. I was the only one subjected to that backscatter machine. I was traveling with my wife and grandson but neither of them were pulled out for that. I specifically remember the TSA agent looked at my shirt and then told me I had to go through the machine. I asked him if I looked suspicious and he just stated that it was a random thing. I don’t think so. Sec. Napolitano has stated that returning vets, pro-lifers, pro-legal immigration supporters and gun rights supporters are ‘probable’ terrorists. My shirt made me look pro-American which made me all the above, so I was singled out.
There was a time when a preacher could stand in the pulpit and declare that as a Christian you could or could not vote for a particular candidate or support a particular political party. Our Founding Fathers strongly believed in the population being correctly informed about the people being put in authority over the population. John Jay, the first Chief Justice of the Supreme Court stated: “Providence has given to our people the choice of their rulers, and it is the duty, as well as the privilege and interest, of our Christian nation to select and prefer Christians for their rulers.” John Adams stated: “Religion and virtue are the only foundations, not of republicanism and of all free government, but of social felicity under all government and in all the combinations of human society.” John Quincy Adams stated “The highest glory of the American Revolution was this: it connected in one indissoluble bond the principles of civil government with the principles of Christianity.” Noah Webster stated "In selecting men for office, let principle be your guide. Regard not the particular sect or denomination of the candidate -- look to his character."
I could list thousands of other quotes that state the obvious and that is the Founders depended on the people of high moral character and preferably Christian. Because of this the preachers would always do an election sermon to inform the people as to who was and who wasn’t a godly candidate. In 1954 after a very questionable election Senate for Lyndon Johnson had an amendment to an IRS bill that made it illegal for a non-profit to endorse a candidate or party or oppose a candidate or party. This was because some churches were talking about his election in 1948 to the Senate when he won by only 87 votes and he was able to stop all recounts. As it turned out one person who counted the votes in 1948 stated on his deathbed that the count was rigged for Johnson.
The church complained but never forced the situation. Now most pastors don’t even know that the church was ever involved in the political process. The IRS has never taken anyone to court over this because it has been very effective as a threat. That amendment is a blatant violation of the 1st Amendment but because it hasn’t ever been challenged the IRS has been able to use it to keep the church out of the political arena for the last 57 years. The influence of the church needs to return to the political arena. Since 1954 we have seen the quality of representatives decline at an alarming rate. There are open homosexuals that are helping pass laws the forces that lifestyle on all American’s. Going into the 2010 elections there were 70 members of Congress that belonged to the Democrat Socialists of America. Had the church maintained their presents in the political arena I don’t believe that this would be the case. So many pastors today won’t stand up for their rights and forget that they will stand before God on judgment and not the IRS. I believe that if they would stand up to the IRS that amendment would be overturned as unconstitutional. Over the last few years during the month of September many churches have endorsed a candidate from the pulpit recorded the sermon and then sent it to the IRS but the IRS hasn’t done anything about it because they are convinced, I’m sure, that if they do take it court, they will lose because the law is more effective as a threat.
We used to be able to fish and hunt freely but now we have to have a license and can only hunt at certain times. No longer can we do things because it is something that we need to do but when it is profitable for the state. We have to have permission from local governments to make improvements to our property and can only build what they say we can build. We have stood back and let government take over too much of our lives, public and private. All city council meetings in America from the Founding until the 1960’s were opened with a pray to God in the Name of Jesus. Now we can’t do that because of an imagined ‘separation of church and state’ that our Founders knew nothing about nor did they ever envision such stupidity.
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We must stand up and take back the rights that the government has taken from us. The best way to do that is at the ballot box. Recently 93 of 100 Senators voted to take our 5th Amendment away. Ninety three! I say replace all 100 and sue the 93 for violating their oath to uphold the Constitution, then impeach Obama for signing the bill violating his oath. We don’t hold our elected officials accountable anymore and neither do we hold judges accountable. They issue decisions on votes on the constitutionality of the votes of the people and the Constitution gives them no jurisdiction over the vote of the people. The only thing they have jurisdiction over is what the legislature passes. There are five members of the Supreme Court that have admitted to using international law in deciding cases, but they are sworn to uphold the Constitution only. Nobody does anything.
Our inaction concerning our inalienable rights and constitutional freedoms may cost us the rest of our freedoms unless we decide that enough is enough!
© 2012 Roger Anghis - All Rights Reserved
Pastor Roger Anghis is the Founder of RestoreFreeSpeech.org, an organization designed to draw attention to the need of returning free speech rights to churches that was restricted in 1954.
President of The Damascus Project, TheDamascusProject.org, which has a stated purpose of teaching pastors and lay people the need of the churches involvement in the political arena and to teach the historical role of Christianity in the politics of the United States. Married-37 years, 3 children, three grandchildren.
Web site: RestoreFreeSpeech.org