This Memorial Day, Freedom Is Dying Before Our Very Eyes

What if the memory of the past is more fulfilling than the reality of the present?

What if Memorial Day reminds us of times when we had more freedom? What if freedom is dying right under our eyes? What if the memory of the past is more fulfilling than the reality of the present?

What if the federal government could write any law, regulate any behavior and tax any event, no matter what the Constitution authorized? What if the majority in Congress rejects the idea of limited government and views the Constitution as granting it blanket power to do whatever it can get away with? What if the constitutional prohibition on the government's taking of life, liberty or property without due process of law is only for show and is not for real?

What if the House of Representatives seriously considered letting the military lock up whatever Americans the president ordered the troops to arrest, without charges filed or lawyers present or a judge presiding? What if the House seriously debated this idea of indefinite military detention of Americans in America and actually voted in favor of it? What if this unconstitutional monstrosity becomes the law and your right to due process depends on whether you remain with the majority, stay silent or behave properly? What if the Constitution's guarantees are not guarantees at all, but are subject to the whims of whoever is in power?

What if the Declaration of Independence, which articulated the moral authority for the revolution against Great Britain, recognized that our rights come from our Creator and are inalienable? What if very few in government recognize the divine origin of human freedom and its natural integrity to our humanity?

What if the government only permitted freedom so long as it was exercised as the government pleases? What if the government rejected the basic values of every person's right to life and liberty and property in favor of some collective good, where the government could arrest you without evidence, ration your freedom to suit the general welfare and take your property from you and sell it at a profit?

What if the government could hire thugs to keep you safe? What if it gave the thugs uniforms and badges and sent them to airports? What if it gave them rubber gloves to wear and told them they could touch you and your children and your parents however and wherever they wished? What if these thugs touched the private parts of little babies and old ladies and intentionally restrained those who have criticized them while the rest of us just watched and let this happen?

What if the airlines did a better job of keeping their customers happy and their property safe than the thugs did? What if the government spent millions of your tax dollars to advertise what a great job it's doing? What if the government charged the airlines millions of their dollars for the illusory services these thugs are rendering? What if the government's thugs never caught a single bad guy intent on harming a flight in America? What if the government's thugs actually let weapons and bad guys onto planes because the thugs are dopes who have no competition, who can't be sued and who won't be fired?

What if the government found more dopes and dupes and convinced them that they should conspire to commit acts of terrorism? What if the idea for terrorist acts and the means for committing them came from the government? What if no real threats were involved in these games and no real weapons were used, just fake threats and fake weapons, fomented and provided by the government? What if the government created these phony crimes just so that it could solve them? What if no one was ever in danger from these government-created crimes, except those the government tricked? What if the government did this again and again and then boasted that it was keeping us safe from its own creations? What if Congress and the media and even the courts fell for this?

What if, on Memorial Day, we remember times that were more free than today? What if, on Memorial Day, when we think of those who died for our freedom, we end up recognizing that the freedom they died for is dying? What if it becomes fashionable for the government to ignore the Constitution? What if the Constitution dies because the government stops following it? What if, next Memorial Day, freedom is just a memory?

What do we do about it?

Andrew P. Napolitano, a former judge of the Superior Court of New Jersey, is the senior judicial analyst at Fox News Channel. Judge Napolitano has written six books on the U.S. Constitution. The most recent is "It Is Dangerous To Be Right When the Government Is Wrong: The Case for Personal Freedom."

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  • fried wylie||

    What if, on Memorial Day, when we think of those who died for our freedom, we end up recognizing that the freedom they died for is dying?

    This Memorial Day, go spit on a veteran's grave. It'll be less desecrating than the wholesale destruction of liberty their spirits have borne witness to.

  • ||

    Tuesday night, at one of my wife's 'girls night out' gatherings, one of her friends confessed to being an obama supporter and that she intends to vote for him. Her father was killed fighting the Nazis in France in WWII. I imagine the man is weeping in his grave.

    Nothing I have ever said to the twit gets through. But then, she is a dipshit in so many ways....she tried to set her daughter up with a gay waiter at the restaurant where the girls meet, after I told her emphatically that all of the wait staff was gay.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    one of her friends confessed to being an obama supporter and that she intends to vote for him. Her father was killed fighting the Nazis in France in WWII. I imagine the man is weeping in his grave.

    Just because someone is a vet doesn't mean anything concerning their politics. After all, many of the so-called "Greatest Generation" currently spends their time screeching "hands off my Medicaid/Social Security, financial reality be damned!"

  • ||

    Yes, there's a reason that union membership in the US plateaued between the late 40s and early 70s, with a slight peak in the mid fifties. The "Greatest Generation" dominated the workforce during that time.

    And for the "Greatest Generation" New Deal Liberalism was a civic religion. Just look at TV shows of the fifties and sixties. And a disproportionate number of them were out and out communists.

  • Randian||

    Tuesday night, at one of my wife's 'girls night out' gatherings, one of her friends confessed to being an obama supporter and that she intends to vote for him. Her father was killed fighting the Nazis in France in WWII. I imagine the man is weeping in his grave.

    I doubt that very much. The Greatest Generation is pretty governmentally liberal. My grandfather, now almost 90, has been voting reliably Democrat for the past few decades, and loved FDR.

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    The "Greatest Generation" created all of the crap that the Baby Boomers are now exploiting for their own financial benefit. Pardon me if I don't feel all that thankful for them.

  • ||

    Baby Boomers would not have complained a wit if serious reforms had been made in Social Security and Medicare in the seventies and eighties before they had sunk so much of their income into it. It was the "Greatest Generation" already collecting benefits who squealed like stuck pigs at the though in spite of the fact that reformers went out of their way to emphasise that they had no intention of cutting current benefits.

  • ||

    HM and Randian, y'all do have a point. Fuck, I am weeping.

  • Tagalog||

    What did she want to do, turn her daughter into a fag hag?

  • ||

    Ha. She simply didnt believe the guy was a fairy. She is blind to subtleties, and even some things not so subtle. I also advised her some years ago not to buy a house from a house flipper, but she did anyway. Now the damn thing is falling apart and she can barely make the payments. Oh well.

    I brought her up as an example of the kinds of idiots who cant or wont see reality. There are far too many like her.

  • Almanian's Evil Twin||

    Naaaaah, it'll never happen.

    Happy Memorial Day! (in advance)

  • Whiterun Guard||

    Can't say I've heard any laws against... Whatever it is you're doing. But I'll lock you up if I have to.

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    You're not supposed to be in here. You need to leave, now.

  • Whiterun Guard||

    We got a nickname for anyone who trifles with us guards here in Whiterun - Suicide.

  • Dovahkiin||

    FUS...

  • JoshSN||

    Military detention of non lawful combatants was decided in Ex Parte Quirin, Judge, regardless of citizenship status.

    Haupt made a claim that he was a U.S. citizen, the court said it was unimportant whether the claim was valid or not.

    Citizenship in the United States of an enemy belligerent does not relieve him from the consequences of a belligerency which is unlawful because in violation of the law of war. Citizens who associate themselves with the military arm of the enemy government, and with its aid, [317 U.S. 1, 38] guidance and direction enter this country bent on hostile acts are enemy belligerents within the meaning of the Hague Convention and the law of war.

    You can argue that American can't declare war on a terrorist group, if you want, and I'd be inclined to agree.

  • Tagalog||

    A long time ago, during the administration of Jefferson, we declared war on the Barbary pirates, and executed that war effectively together with Great Britain.

  • JoshSN||

    The Barbary Pirates were far closer to a nation than al-Qaeda is. They basically ran a State of the Ottoman Empire.

  • ||

    US citizens or not, humans deserve due process.

  • JoshSN||

    Enemies captured on the battlefield during a war deserve due process?

    The great thing about Ex Parte Milligan was the distinction the court drew between places where the law was in effect (Indiana, when Milligan was tried) and places where there was no law (the battlefield, over which, ostensibly, both sides are trying to impose their own law).

    The example Lindsey Graham kept making during the NDAA debate was that it would have been absurd to give the German saboteurs, illegal combatants, the rights of regular criminals during WWII.

    Spies, traditionally in wars, can simply be shot, same as soldiers found behind enemy lines in civilian clothes, or soldiers wearing false flag uniforms.

  • Tagalog||

    John Locke, in his Two Treatises of Government, said (his words were nearly copied verbatim by Jefferson in the Declaration of Independence) that citizens may put up with many usurpations of the government's primary raison d'etre, namely, to protect and regularize the private ownership of property, but when government becomes tyrannical, the people are within their God-given natural rights to replace the tyrannical government with one that is more to their liking.

    Our present-day tentativeness before the power of government is dismaying, but people have been tolerant of worse governments than the one we have. Still, things do seem to slowly be drawing to a head. The continuing near-equal political near-stalemate between two quite different visions of the state can't continue: a house divided against itself cannot stand, so something will eventually have to give.

  • ||

    What are these "two quite different visions of the state" you're referring to? Certainly not current Republicans and Democrats who as far as I can tell have only the issue of gay marriage separating them.

  • sweeterjan||

    What if these thugs touched the http://www.ceinturesfr.com/cei.....-c-14.html private parts of little babies and old ladies and intentionally restrained those who have criticized them while the rest of us just watched and let this happen?

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