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Robin Smith / Jul. 9, 2019

Armed With the Truth: The Bible & the Constitution

A new book contends that fundamentalists are ruining religion and government.

Today, we constitutional conservatives must either arm ourselves with the Truth of the battle being fought against us or lose ground daily. While the tactic employed on the political Left of framing the opposition as extremists is standard operational procedure, it results in conservatives being marginalized and polarized as “dangerous.”

So, did you read about the dangers of honoring the U.S. Constitution, which are similar to the dangers of honoring the teachings of the Bible? Leave it to an “intellectual” on the political Left to take the moral “high ground” to virtue signal that the Goldilocks approach to belief in Truth is approved. Yep, that “just-right” method based on one’s personal taste and preference, not hard facts, is sanctioned as best versus standards that transcend time, place, culture, and trends.

Last week in an NBC News piece, The Cult of the Constitution, a book written by Mary Anne Franks was promoted to be a reasonable view. Yet when distilled down to its simplest elements, Franks argues that if you believe in the fundamentals of the Constitution, just as in the fundamentals of the Bible, you’re an extremist and your radical positions don’t create a better country. In fact, contends article author Noah Berlatsky, those of us who believe in the Bible and Rule of Law as foundational to our lives “will create a worse one.”

The title of the piece clearly warns the reader: “Like the Bible, the Constitution can be a harmful document in the wrong hands.” Let’s start there. Compare that, again, the political Left takes the posture that anything in the hands of any individual that’s not government-controlled, sanctioned by the thought police of the self-described tolerant population of “progressives” or from their world of equity from redistribution and faux fairness is dangerous. A gun is dangerous. The Bible is dangerous. The Constitution is dangerous. Earned wealth is dangerous. Private property is dangerous. The pursuit of happiness is dangerous. Liberty is dangerous. To the world of the disgruntled victims, yes, most everything is dangerous — even life itself.

But ideology is especially dangerous, since it’s the fuel that runs the combustible engine of activity that separates those who are makers, capable of self-reliance, self-governance, and independence from the growing mass that ebbs and flows as one malcontented mash of dependents who take from others in their devotion to social justice that is simply prettied-up socialism. So, to make the point, Franks’s Cult of the Constitution is given a mini-review and paralleled to that other dangerous text that is treated as infallible by billions across the globe: the Bible.

A professor of law at the University of Miami, Franks writes in her tome, “The combination of reverence and ignorance is at the heart of all fundamentalism.” In the introduction to her book published by the Stanford University Press, Franks speaks of her salvation as a child, followed by experiences that produced questions leading into her pursuit of the law as a field of study, equally producing some questions. It appears that her questions on life have framed her views with a big dose of irony.

Specifically, the legal scholar observed that in both the Christian community of faith and in the legal community, the habit of selectively picking and choosing Bible Truth and constitutional rights served the religious fundamentalists and constitutional fundamentalists, respectively, in an allegedly negative and dangerous manner. The argument, it seems, should be against selective application of truths and principles, not the adherence of the same.

An excerpt of the introduction declares, “Much as the evangelical community I was raised in focused on verses about homosexuality or women’s inferiority while ignoring the Golden Rule, constitutional fundamentalists focus on individual rights of speech and bearing arms while disregarding the equal protection guarantees of the Fourteenth Amendment. This is not just a tactic of conservatives, whose affinity for Christian fundamentalism is no secret, but also of self-identified liberals.”

While Franks seems to recognize selectivity as a tool used by both sides of the political aisle, she makes no effort to hide her wide embrace of societal privilege that is bestowed upon white men. She writes, “The fundamentalist reading of the Constitution, especially of the First and Second Amendments, produces the same effect. The most powerful and privileged people in America — white men — cast themselves as an underclass engaged in a protracted struggle against the women and minorities seeking to censor and disarm them.”

Both Franks and NBC’s Berlatsky tear after gun rights as an example of “constitutional fundamentalism” that is dangerous. Offering the oft-cited but erroneous belief that the Second Amendment only confers a right to have an armed “well-regulated militia,” the argument is that constitutional fundamentalists take the extreme position when defending their right to own a weapon for personal defense. To illustrate, Franks observes that gun owners declare, “I carry a gun because it’s my constitutional right, and I feel better when I have it and the fact that it makes you uncomfortable and that it objectively makes you less safe is something I just don’t care about.” Berlatsky editorializes of the premise, “This essentially selfish logic is also a hallmark of First Amendment fundamentalism.”

Further, Franks hangs her framing on the peg of the Fourteenth Amendment, which establishes equal protection of the law guaranteed for all citizens. Franks, in her own reasoning, utilizes the parallel of salvation — the belief that those who accept that Jesus Christ paid the ultimate penalty required of all sin by a righteous God live lives that are separate, distinct and are saved: “I wrote this book to advocate for the position that the only rights any of us should have are the rights that all of us should have. If only some of us are saved, all of us are lost.”

And, there it is. Equity of results. All or none. Franks misses the fact that some are saved through belief and a decision to embrace, follow, and observe through lives committed to our Christian faith, but all are given equity of opportunity. Similarly, all are endowed by our Creator with certain unalienable rights. All U.S. citizens are also given rights. However, individuals must choose to embrace these rights as gifts to employ for personal growth, existence, and authentic Liberty, not rights to be granted by a government entity in efforts to develop a permanent dependency of its population to the State.

The irony of Franks argument is that both the Bible and the Constitution are selectively harvested to apply to situations when the entirety, she says, must be embraced and applied to all. Well, that’s exactly what Constitutional Conservatives aim to do but selectivity of another flavor is applied that’s secular in theology and social in its governance by the Left.

So, arm yourselves with the Truth. The battle of ideas that create our culture rages.

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