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Wednesday, December 21, 2016
The US Constitution And Dinner With Family
Portrait Of Thomas Paine
Tonight, December 21, 2016, my wife Candice and I went to Prestonsburg, KY, for dinner out with several of my cousins, their spouses, and some children and grandchildren. As we sat down for dinner in the restaurant, my cousin Jack Terry, US Army Retired, US Army Corps Of Engineers Retired, Viet Nam Veteran, Iraq Veteran with the Corps Of Engineers, pulled out several identical small red packages and passed them out to the adults in the crowd with the words, "Here is something you are going to need in the near future." When we opened them, they were pocket copies of the US Constitution. With all his past military experience along with several years of working for defense contractors between the US Army and the Corps Of Engineers, Jack Terry would not be surprising if he had come to be a full blown Right Wing Radical Repugnican as many military people do. Instead, he has done the only rational thing and stuck steadfastly to his Democratic and somewhat liberal beliefs. All through the recent election process, both Jack and I have been warning everyone we knew of the imminent danger posed by Donald Trump to the US Constitution, to the country, and to the entire world. Somewhere in the neighborhood of 54million people did not listen to us. A majority of about 56million people like us knew the truth all along. Yet, we still ended up with the growing probability that Donald Trump will be sworn into office as President Of The United States before any of his multitude of past crimes catch up with him. God help us all if we have to suffer the consequences of all his potential future crimes. During the next four years, if this terrorist regime stays in office that long without starting World War III, the US Constitution will be attacked mercilessly in a multitude of ways. Just today in the Washington Post, Trump stood by his plan to create a national registry of Muslims which is clearly unconstitutional. That plan is not only unconstitutional but is also a replay of EXACTLY what Adolph Hitler did to the Jews in preparation for the Holocaust.
Sadly, this type of action will become more and more common if Trump actually becomes President and remains in office for any length of time with control of both houses of congress. He and several of his cabinet appointees have already expressed desires to destroy the very departments they are being chosen to administer. His choice to head the Environmental Protection Agency, Scott Pruitt, is one of the most highly visible opponents of the agency over the last ten to twenty years. His nominee for Secretary of Labor, Andrew Puzder, has called for the repeal of the minimum wage and further broadening of legal rat holes which allow employers to force employees to work unpaid overtime. Betsey DeVos, Trump's nominee for Secretary of Education, has repeatedly called for government funding to be given to Right Wing Radical charter schools and Christian schools. In Lemon v. Kurtzman in 1971, the Supreme Court established the Three Part Test for Established the three part test for determining if an action of
government violates First Amendment's separation of church and state:
1) the government action must have a secular purpose;
2) its primary purpose must not be to inhibit or to advance religion;
3) there must be no excessive entanglement between government and religion.
Under Lemon v. Kurtzman, any use of federal money to help support church based schools is clearly unconstitutional. In Edwards v. Acquillard 1987, the Supreme Court also decided that it is unconstitutional for the state to require teaching of "creation science" in all instances in which evolution is taught.The bottom line of these two decisions is that any muddling of government and religion is unconstitutional. Yet many of people who voted for Trump support these types of actions. What is interesting about this is that Donald Trump has not shown one iota of the religious beliefs which these people claim to support.
Trump's choice for US Attorney General, US Senator Jeff Sessions of Alabama, was refused confirmation to a federal judgeship more than twenty years ago because he was found to be "too racist" by the US Senate at that confirmation hearing. Sadly, Sessions and all these other nominees are highly likely to be confirmed by a congress which is now controlled by a Right Wing Radical Repugnican majority which appears to be far more extreme than the congress which impeded President Barack Obama at every step for seven years. God help us all if all these people are confirmed and given actual power.
There is no more important time than today for every intelligent US citizen to understand the US Constitution instead of believing some extremists positions being espoused by the conglomerate of extreme organization which helped to gain 54million votes for Trump. Tonight's dinner with the gift of the US Constitution from Jack also reminded me of former US Senator Robert Byrd from West Virginia, who never went anywhere without his well worn and often demonstrated copy of the Constitution. If you do not own a copy, get one. If you have not read the Constitution, read it and study it regularly. Speak out about the truths contained in the Constitution every time you hear some person motivated purely by self interest, such as Donald Trump, when they misinterpret, misread, and willfully seek to damage or destroy it. Individual and collective rights are now under attack and they will remain under attack so long as Trump and his band of criminals and thieves occupy (and I use the military definition) the White House.
I will be buying several copies of the US Constitution to pass on to others who have not read it or don't understand it. I suggest you do the same. To quote Thomas Paine: "“THESE are the times that try men's souls. The
summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink
from the service of their country; but he that stands by it now,
deserves the love and thanks of man and woman."