by: Brent Smith
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Over the past few months, we’ve seen many of our natural rights “temporarily” stripped away. Maybe it’s time to remind us who to thank for them and what we might look like without them.
In an Oct. 24, 1787, letter to Thomas Jefferson, James Madison expressed that, “Col. [George] Mason left Philadelphia in an exceeding ill humor indeed. A number of little circumstances arising in part from the impatience which prevailed towards the close of the business, conspired to whet his acrimony. He returned to Virginia with a fixed disposition to prevent the adoption of the plan if possible. He considers the want of a bill of rights as a fatal objection.”
At the Constitutional Convention, in mid-September 1787, committed Anti-Federalists George Mason and Eldridge Gerry failed to persuade any of their fellow delegates to preface the Constitution with a bill of rights.
“It would give great quiet to the people,” urged Mason. He also thought it would be easy to compile a list given the widespread presence of an introductory bill of rights at the state level. A few days later, on Sept. 17, 1787, both Mason and Gerry declined to sign the Constitution, citing the absence of a bill of rights.
Mason’s main objection was that, “There is no Declaration of Rights, and the laws of the general [federal] government being paramount to the laws and constitution of the several States, the Declaration of Rights in the separate States are no security. Nor are the people secured even in the enjoyment of the benefit of common law.”
However, months later, in February 1788, the Massachusetts Compromise was struck, thanks to the efforts of two other prominent Anti-Federalists, Samuel Adams and John Hancock. Thus the influential state of Massachusetts agreed to the ratification of the Constitution with the promise by Madison and the Federalists to support a bill of rights. And unlike the political class of today, they kept their promise.
Okay, great, but why is this history lesson important? It’s important as a reminder that if the Anti-Federalists hadn’t stuck to their guns, we may not have a Bill of Rights – no Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms – and no First Amendment, no freedom of speech, assembly, religion, etc. beyond what our benevolent government chooses to bestow upon us, or take away. We would, in effect, be modern day Great Britain – which seems to be what many Governors have tried to accomplish recently.
You may have recall the 2018 arrest, in Great Britain, of Englishman Tommy Robinson, founder and former leader of the English Defence League, an anti-Islam group.
Ben Shapiro wrote that he “was arrested for standing outside a court building and reporting on a trial involving the alleged grooming of young girls for sexual assault by radical Muslims.”
Shapiro adds that Robinson was also arrested a year earlier for filming, outside another courthouse, “where a trial for alleged gang rape by radical Muslims was taking place.”
The sentencing Judge cited, “pejorative language which prejudges the case, and it is language and reporting … that could have had the effect of substantially derailing the trial.” The media was also banned from reporting on the trial for the same reasons.
At this point, you may be shouting at your computer or whatever other device you may be reading this on – “what about freedom speech!” This guy was on a public street simply reporting on the trial. He has every right to that, does he not?
Well no – he does not. See, jolly old England has no Constitution – no Bill of Rights. There is no First Amendment guarantee of freedom of speech, freedom of the press, religion, assembly, or right of redress.
Therefore the courts and the politicians can legally mandate such things and there isn’t a darn thing that Robinson or any other Brit can do about it. If they want to shut down reporting of gang rapes and sex slavery because the defendants are all Muslims, there is nothing stopping their politically correct insanity.
As Shapiro wrote: “There can be no society without standards, and our standard is the Constitution and Bill of Rights. This is what sets us apart and ahead of all other nations.”
We had best keep this is mind as the Governors of various States continue to assault both. Once we lose these rights, we will likely never reacquire them.
A promise of safety cannot and must not supersede the Bill of Rights.