Freedom, as understood by America’s founders, meant that freedom for everyone must necessarily be tied to certain boundaries and constraints to work. For over two hundred years, it did work, albeit imperfectly at times.
The Bill of Rights guaranteed all citizens freedom of religion, speech, of the press, assembly, and petition of the Government for redress of grievances. Congress was to make laws that did not infringe on these rights. Laws (boundaries, restraints) were to be passed by both houses of Congress and signed into law by the President. Anything not assigned by the Constitution to Congress was to be left to the states. Fairly simple in theory, and with proper enforcement, the country prospered. America was unified under the Constitution. Its aim was to be “one nation, under God.”
However, America’s unity began to unravel somewhere around 1960 and ever more increasingly since then. Currently the nation is at war from within. It is the most divided since the Civil War.
America’s state of division came about as all deterioration does – little by little, almost imperceptibly. It came with an increasing breakdown of faith and civility over time. It came with a suspicion toward our form of government, with growing disrespect toward our laws, our flag, and our Constitution.
In the beginning and for two centuries, the nation had embraced the principles of Christianity. Every school-aged child in the country knew basic tenets of the Bible through their schools. They knew about the Ten Commandments, and the Golden Rule. They were taught the history of western civilization with its emphasis on the role of Christianity. They were taught how to be good citizens. However, once prayer, the Ten Commandments, and much of history were removed from the classrooms, so were the bases for moral character and good citizenship.
The Scriptures teach that “Where there is no revelation, the people cast off restraints.” We have seen that happen in America. All boundaries and moral restraints are giving way. Nothing seems to be sacred anymore. No borders and no rules are the order of the day. Under the guise of tolerance and diversity, we are seeing the unity of America disintegrate. Will being unfettered be worth the demise of the freest society on earth?