SAN JOSE: On this Independence Day, American citizens need to revisit the values of freedom. Without a proper perspective, Freedom is becoming less relevant in today’s divided States of America. Leading to the question that despite the ideals and fiery intent within the Declaration of Independence, are those ideals still relevant in a politically polarized America?
On July 8, 1776, leaders gathered the populace to the square by ringing the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia. They read aloud the words of the Declaration of Independence for the first time. The words enshrined in the Declaration were indeed quite powerful at that time. And they still are powerful words expressing powerful ideals today.
However, the hard question is: Who cares?
In his original draft, Thomas Jefferson had written: “We hold these truths to be sacred and divine…”
Benjamin Franklin revised it to the broader, and more widely acceptable, ”self-evident” version. To Jefferson, his words were sacred and divine. Even so, for the diversity of the beliefs of the signers, the truths in the document were at least self-evident.
However, are those truths “still evident” in America today?
One of the most profound and most fundamental truths in the words of the Declaration of Independence is the belief that there is a Creator. The signers agreed in the idea that the people’s inalienable rights are by that Creator. Unmistakably, there are those in the nation today, whether Leftist or Conservative, who do not believe in or have a real relationship with God.
Many Americans oppose the notion of Creator divined rights. That is true whether people are American by birth or by naturalization. The scientifically advanced and highly evolved, technology-addicted contemporary culture looks upon belief in God as quaint or quite old-fashioned.
So, what does that say about believing in the words of the Declaration of Independence?
Such a belief in a Supreme Being is easy to ignore. The ‘enlightened’ in American society, it is thought, is much too ‘intelligent’ to believe in God. Today in America, even to bring such a belief to the surface of public scrutiny can be somewhat controversial. Bringing God up in a political campaign can be categorized as an act of career-ending suicide for those seeking political office.
This is because there now exists an active intolerance for those who believe or those who adhere to their faith.
There is a growing sentiment among segments of the population who cannot tolerate those who do believe. Such intellectually elite not only cannot perceive the existence of a Creator, but they also cannot accept those who believe in the existence of God.
Even more importantly, there are those elected to public office who hold this prejudice. They will give lip service to the value of ‘equal rights,’ or publicly condemn the evils of racism. However, they refute the rights of the religious.
The appearance of indignation or displays of public righteousness over societal evils does not demonstrate genuine beliefs. There is glaring hypocrisy when politicians make photo-op displays of concern over the lives of non-citizens. Persons who are attempting to and entering the nation illegally even as major cities display helplessness over the burgeoning homeless population.
Moreover, the cities overrun by the homeless, are run by the same political party leadership that is showing concerns over non-citizens. A dishonest act toward Americans. One would think intelligent people would recognize the truth for what it is.
People who live by lies cannot distinguish between truth and lies. Truth is only relative.
It seems glaring hypocrisy to those who have a solid grounding in common sense or genuine faith. There is less concern when religious bigots express such hypocrisy within the general society. Because people with a deep understanding of fairness and sincere tolerance see such human hypocrisy for what it is.
When the mainstream media refuses to support the political party, the people of faith, or people of common sense, can see right through the false narratives.
So, when Jefferson wrote: “We hold these truths to be sacred and divine…” he meant truths that the “We” believe in. Taking God out of the picture, the sentence could just as well read: “We hold these words to be self-evident…”
To the people who live by the Lie, there is no significant difference. They cannot translate a more profound significance to the sentence. There is no deeper significance when God is not a part of the equation.
Moreover, without God in the equation, rights are up for grabs.
This perspective is not limited to the Declaration of Independence. It also bleeds into the United States Constitution and the Bill of Rights. If there is no God, everything in politics is relative, and therefore, such human rights are relative. To those secular humanists, or Progressives, or Leftists in the political arena, the Creator does not bestow rights to the people. Because there is no Creator.
The rights that they believe in are the rights coming from the government, decided by humans.
This core truth of these self-evident truths embedded within the Declaration of Independence is in great jeopardy in the new millennium.
Today, the concept of “political correctness” is the truth that dictates public acceptance or intolerance, which is a foundation for lawlessness. How does one “hold on” to self- evident truths? Especially if they are just words and not truths. The government can alter words to suit the government. Making it hard to hold the government accountable when there is no God. No standard of good or bad. Men, as well as women, in government, take it upon themselves to use words that are “politically correct.” Those words are based not on truths, but the whim of the people who happen to be in power.
The pervasive concept of what is and what is not “politically correct.”
This perception is not a self-evident truth, but an agreement of those in power with those who want to be in power. Also, those employed by those who are in power. Then there are those who worship those in power.
The secular-based major media outlets have much to do with this more recent trend.
Thus, those who seek unofficially to enforce political correctness have instilled timidity and fear among those who are religious, or those who seek to pursue their faith without intimidation, no matter what faith they represent: Christian, Jewish, Muslim, or whatever.
The secular society has also increasingly become intolerant and overtly oppressive. This tends to muzzle those who hold onto genuine faith in God. Even politicians who claim religion are quite careful in their choice of words in speeches. Cautious with the words they say in public. Less they are deemed politically incorrect by the secular mainstream media, politicians, or by the terrorist factions of the opposing political party.
Today’s Democrat party that sanctions intolerance and violence against those who are not considered “politically correct.” (Antifa attack conservative blogger Andy Ngo amid violence at Portland Proud Boys protest)
— Andy Ngo (@MrAndyNgo) June 29, 2019
Sadly, the grave danger with this situation is that when leaders do not believe that they are accountable to God for their words and deeds, anything under the sun can and will be done to obtain, retain, and sustain power.
Indeed, much of the news headlines and media stories about the actions and efforts coming from the halls of Congress these days, reveals that many politicians even ignore the will of the voters. It seems that many do not honestly believe that they are accountable to anyone.
Thus the attitude of many contemporary politicians is that they are not even accountable to the people who elected them. Much less having a sense of responsibility to God for their actions. While some believe that they are only responsible to their Party’s leaders (if that), some believe responsibility is only to themselves.
At the very least, the standards of faith Jefferson’s Declaration establishes are being seriously undermined in contemporary America. However, there still exists an understanding of Divine Providence. There still exists a sense of responsibility to a higher power. And the recognition that the Founding Generation faced a greater foe, the government of Great Britain. The King was far more powerful than what exists as a threat to Freedom today.
People of faith should recognize that the Land of the Free was created with the founding generation possessing a true relationship with God. It is evident in the magnificent language of the Declaration of Independence.
So, how does one “hold on” to self- evident truths? First, the faith-filled and religious Americans who believe in such self-evident truths, need to reaffirm that the precious gifts of Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness still originate from God.
They need to stop electing people who could care less about American citizens. They need to stop electing people who could care less about American values.
Rights were given by God to the people who were willing to fight for them for the sake of a government of the people, by the people and for the people. May God continue to bless the United States of America so that such a government never perish!