Constitutional Day: September 17th 2012

Today is Constitution Day, September 17th. It is the 225th anniversary of the signing of our Constitution at the Philadelphia Constitutional Convention in 1787. You can read it HERE.
It is a good time to access ourselves to see how much we know of this important document and its amendments in a time when politicians choose to ignore and circumvent.
The best essays and articles concerning this special day, as well as addressing the fact that our elected representatives in the White House and Congress who do not fulfill their oaths has been written by Mark Alexander, founder and publisher of Patriot Post
Ed Fuelner, President of Heritage Foundation:

Monday, Sept. 17, marks the 225th anniversary of the signing of the nation’s second great founding document, the Constitution that provides Americans with limited government. … The Constitution was drafted more than 11 years after the Declaration. The United States had won independence but was struggling under the weak Articles of Confederation. The Founding Fathers wanted to draft a document that would provide an effective but carefully limited federal government. Through a series of compromises, they did just that. They designed three branches of government — legislative, executive and judicial — that would check each other. If one tried to usurp too much power, the others would have an interest in bringing it back into line.

 Just as competition brings down prices in economics, competition would tend to keep any particular branch of government from acquiring too much power. … The Constitution has held up well for more than two centuries, with only occasional modifications (the 27 amendments) through the years. Of course, people used to be a bit more serious about the idea that the Constitution said what it meant and meant what it said. Any 21st-century celebration of the Constitution should take note that the country is no longer keeping faith with its constitutional principles. Today, most ‘laws’ actually are rules and regulations enacted by bureaucrats in government agencies, not statutes passed by elected lawmakers. Even when Congress does pass legislation, such as the Dodd-Frank financial reform law or Obamacare, lawmakers leave many blanks and expect rule-makers to fill them in. That means the bureaucracy, peopled with federal ‘experts,’ essentially exists as an unelected fourth branch of government. … Our constitutional framework of limited government requires a president who will actively use his granted powers but also recognize the strict limits on those powers. After the Constitution was complete, Benjamin Franklin noted that it made the country ‘a republic, if you can keep it.’ This Constitution Day, let’s honor the framers and respect their work by changing America’s course — and returning to our constitutional roots.

Walter E. Williams, Professor of Economics and columnist:

Constitutionally and by precedent, the House of Representatives has the exclusive prerogative to originate bills to appropriate money, as well as to raise revenues. … No matter how Obama’s presidency is viewed, if we buy into the notion that it’s he whose spending binge is crippling our nation through massive debt and deficits, we will naturally focus our attention on the White House. The fact of the matter is that Washington has been on a spending binge no matter who has occupied the White House. In 1970, federal spending was $926 billion. Today it’s $3.8 trillion. In inflation-adjusted dollars that’s about a 300 percent increase. Believing that presidents have taxing and spending powers leaves Congress less politically accountable for our deepening economic quagmire. Of course, if you’re a congressman, not being held accountable is what you want. … Most members of our Republican-controlled House of Representatives say they’re against Obamacare. If they really were, they surely would attach a legislative rider or some other legislative device to the Department of Health and Human Services’ appropriation bill to ban spending any money on Obamacare; they have the power to. But they don’t have the political courage to do so, and their lives are made easier by the pretense that it’s the president controlling the spending. And we fall for it.

Heritage Foundation also offers a teaching Guide to the Constitution at their website. It also has a section that if a Teachers’ Companion. Heritage is one of America’s leading think tanks. A list of think tanks can be found HERE.
Hillsdale College offers online courses concerning the Constitution: Constitution 101: The Meaning and History of the Constitution and Constitution 201. Constitution 101 is free with a request for a $50 donation. It is worth the $50 and supports an excellent college that does not accept federal or state taxpayer subsidies founded in 1944 as a liberal arts college that presently has a student body of about 1,400. They offer Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science degrees.
The Constitution 101 course includes the following topics:
  • The American MindLarry P. Arnn
  • The Declaration of Independence Thomas G. West
  • The Problem of Majority Tyranny David Bobb
  • Separation of Powers: Preventing TyrannyKevin Portteus
  • Separation of Powers: Ensuring Good GovernmentWill Morrisey
  • Religion, Morality, and PropertyDavid Bobb
  • Crisis of Constitutional GovernmentWill Morrisey
  • Abraham Lincoln and the ConstitutionKevin Portteus
  • The Progressive Rejection of the FoundingRonald J. Pestritto
  • The Recovery of the ConstitutionLarry P. Arnn
The Introduction to the Constitution course is a five-part lecture series featuring the Hillsdale President, Larry P. Arnn. A free Constitutional Reader is available in digital version of the printed Reader provided for the student body with an illustrated timeline, key debates between Founders and the Progressives, important topics of American government, and a database of essential quotes. The Kirby Center Lecture Series also has a video archive.

Knowing what is in the U.S. Constitution and why the Constitution is relevant to us today is fundamental to our being able to defend it. As federal civil servants supporting the Department of Defense, we have a special obligation to understand and appreciate the U.S. Constitution and the role we each play in providing ‘for the common defense’.

Further Reading – Constitution Day:
Department of Defense – it should be noted that President Obama completely ignored ratification anniversary of the Constitution, which is appropriate because he doesn’t respect it or honor his oath of office.
Department of DefenseObama Proclaims Constitution, Citizenship Day. Note that Obama did not make a speech or hold a press conference celebrating this day.
St. Cloud TimesConstitution is Foundation.
While children are out of school in Chicago because of a teachers’ strike (are schools for students or teachers?) – Chicago celebrates Polish Constitution Day with a parade – is it not an American Constitution Day? Chicago is so out of touch.
While local networks are covering Constitution Day and activities, the national news media, like our president, is ignoring it, except for CNN: Constitution Day Ushers in Mandate to Teach the Constitution.
Cinco De Mayo (not an American holiday) received more coverage, from national media and White House, than Constitution Day.
What does that tell you?
But have heart, We the People are recognizing more than just a few years ago – probably because they have awaken from their apathy and see that we may lose it in the dust bins of the history of civilization. Also more people are realizing how much OUR government ignores the document, as well as its amendments – violating their oath of office.