FOURTH OF JULY WEEKEND

During this past week, in the congressional hearings to vet Elena Kagan for appointment as a Supreme Court judge, in my opinion the most important engagement of verbal exchange was between Senator Grassley and Solicitor Kagan on property Rights. He quoted the fifth amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which states, “nor shall private property be taken for public use without just compensation.” Then asked her opinion on property Rights.

For awhile, Elena Kagan hemmed and hawed, trying to answer by going around, over and under. It was like Senator Grassley trying to pull hen’s teeth, but he persisted until she finally answered by saying: “Property Rights are the foundation of Liberty.” She got that right! And if she sticks to that basic premise in her interpretations and rulings on the Supreme Court, we can give a shout-out. However, if she’s anything like Sotomayer, who has already ruled contrary to what she expressed during confirmation hearings, la de da and tut tut, it’s going to be furtherance actions down the road of American demise.

Since this is Independence weekend, the 4th of July on Sunday, there will be a lot of fireworks and celebrations, by going to the beach, camping out, attending concerts, fishing on the lakes, enjoying cookouts with neighbors, going to movies. Nothing wrong with any of this, rather a blessing we still live in a country able to do all these things – if we can afford to after paying all the taxes heaped on us.

But the question is, how many of us seek Freedom first, this 4th of July, 2010? How many understand the Principles of the philosophy of Freedom? And how many of the 300 million-plus citizens of this nation place a higher value on their personal freedom, than anything else? Or even a higher value than a goodtime weekend? How many decide to just stay home, and study the history of our founders, read the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution? Or quietly read a good book, like “Commonsense Rights of Man” by Thomas Paine?

Here’s a great quote from Learned Hand, in The Spirit of Liberty speech at “I Am American Day” ceremony, New York City, May 1944: “What do we mean when we say first of all we seek liberty? I often wonder whether we do not rest our hopes too much upon Constitution, upon laws and upon courts. These are false hopes believe me, these are false hopes. Liberty lies in the hearts of men and women, when it dies there no constitution, no law, no court , can ever do much to help it. What is this liberty that must lie in the hearts of men and women? It is not the ruthless, the unbridled will, it is not the Freedom to do as one likes. That is the denial of liberty, and leads straight to its overthrow. A society in which men recognize no check on their freedom, soon becomes a society where Freedom is the possession of only a savage few – as we have learned to our sorrow. What then is the spirit of Liberty? I cannot define it, I can only tell you my own faith. The spirity of liberty is the spirit which is not too sure that it is right, the spirit of Liberty is the spirit which seeks to understand the minds of other men and women; the spirit of Liberty is the Spirit which weighs their interests alongside its own without bias.”

Sometime during this 4th of July holiday celebration weekend, stop and reflect in a quiet place about Freedom and what it means to you and your family. The very idea of freedom is commensurate with private property Rights. You cannot have Freedom without having ownership of private property Rights. And Freedom and Private Property Rights are a total concept. If this is true, and it can be arguably shown it is in fact true, then to the degree you have of that 100% total concept, determines one’s degree of bondage.

In this connection, stop and reflect on your life, and ask the question – how much bondage are you in today. Is your Freedom 10, 20, 50, 75 percent? Only you can decide how much Freedom you want, how much Freedom you have, and how you can regain any degree of it you have surrendered to another person, another group, another government.

LET FREEDOM RING
JUST ME AC
EMAIL: annecleveland@bellsouth.net

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