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Glenn Beck: The Bible WARNS of these ‘perilous times’ — HERE’S how to prepare yourself and your family

On “The Glenn Beck Radio Program,” Glenn read from the Bible’s II Timothy 3, in which Paul warns of “perilous times” to come and describes a generation that will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, and the list goes on. Sound familiar?

But Glenn said the times we’re facing — which will likely become more and more difficult — are not any graver than what our Founders faced. We can overcome, and while it won’t be easy, it will be worth it.

“Just like George Washington and the badge of merit, we will not be able to conquer this evil unless we are on God’s side. If we don’t have Divine Providence, we will not be able to survive. The things that are arrayed in front of us, are no greater no less than what our Founders had arrayed against them,” Glenn stated.

“So, what will we do? You must make those decisions, as a family, right now. What is the line for you that you and your family will not cross? Because if you don’t know it now, you will cross it,” he warned. “You have to speak out, be that voice. You have to be strong enough to lead.”

Glenn went on to thank and praise his audience, saying, “This is the kindest, most generous audience I have ever encountered.”

“You will stand. This audience could be the extra 5% that is needed to change things, for the better,” he added. “We have great and glorious times, when I believe we will see the hand of God. We will see miracles. Expect them. And live in such a way where you can call them down.”

Watch the clip to get Glenn’s take on what’s coming next and how to prepare yourself and your family.

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San Francisco school board to vote on reversing school naming decision

The San Francisco school board is expected to vote Tuesday to reverse its controversial decision to rename 44 public schools with supposedly racist or sexist namesakes like George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, and Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.).

The reversal comes after heavy backlash against the board for attempting to cancel the legacy of important historical figures in California instead of prioritizing school reopening during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Last October, San Francisco school officials on the School Names Advisory Committee created a list of 44 school building sites that were named for historical figures and proposed changing the names of those buildings. The buildings on this list were determined to be associated “with slavery, genocide, colonization, exploitation and oppression, among other factors,” and the committee was tasked with purging the buildings of those names.

In January, the school board voted to adopt the committee’s recommendations and move forward with changing the names of these buildings. The decision was made at a time when school children were not attending class in-person because of the pandemic.

However, after intense backlash from parents and even from San Francisco’s mayor, the school board in February paused the plan to rename school buildings. Mayor London Breed said the school board’s priorities were “offensive and completely unacceptable.” Others criticized the renaming committee for poor historical research, including wrongly accusing Paul Revere of attempting to colonize the Penobscot people.

With the board’s decision facing intense scrutiny, board President Gabriela Lopez announced the school renaming process would be put on hold until all students returned to school for in-person instruction.

Now, ABC News reports the board will vote on whether to rescind the order to rename schools entirely, noting that impending threats of litigation will be a factor in its decision.

The board is scheduled to vote Tuesday on a resolution to rescind its January decision and revisit the matter after all students have returned full time to in-person learning.

Since the renaming vote, the board has faced multiple lawsuits, including one from City Hall and the mayor to pressure the school district and board to reopen classrooms more quickly. Another was filed in March by San Francisco attorney Paul Scott, whose children attend public schools, alleging the school board’s renaming decision violated California’s open meeting law and did not involve the community.

San Francisco Superior Court Judge Ethan Schulman issued a ruling calling on the board to do what the lawsuit requests — rescind the vote and dissolve the renaming advisory committee — or show by April 16 why it shouldn’t be compelled to do so.

The resolution being considered Tuesday does not address the criticism but denounces the lawsuit, saying it “wishes to avoid the distraction and wasteful expenditure of public funds in frivolous litigation.”

The San Francisco school board has been the subject of several controversies of late. The former vice president of the board Alison Collns was ousted from her position after making racist comments about Asian Americans. Previously, Collins argued against appointing a gay man to the Parent Advisory Council because he was a white male.

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Horowitz: The difference between Washington’s birthday and ‘Presidents’ Day’ is the difference between liberty and tyranny

No, we are not celebrating Joe Biden, Barack Obama, Woodrow Wilson, or Millard Fillmore this week. We are supposed to be celebrating George Washington. In other words, we are not celebrating the majestic power of the chief executive of the United States government in the abstract, but the humble leadership of one man who, until recently, successfully set the precedent of the presidency being wielded as an office of limited power rather than the power of a king.

Before George Washington’s birthday was hijacked and replaced with a generic “Presidents’ Day,” Feb. 22 was a day to celebrate the father of our country. According to the Congressional Research Service, George Washington’s birthday, to be celebrated on Feb. 22, was first conceived as a federal holiday on Jan. 31, 1879. It wasn’t until 1968, when Congress passed the Uniform Monday Holiday Act in order to give government workers even more time off, that the holiday was moved to the third Monday in February. Although the name was never officially changed, having the date of celebration disconnected from Washington’s actual birthday has allowed the original purpose of the holiday to become nearly obsolete, like every other meaningful American tradition.

Because Washington refused to become king when he had the opportunity on two occasions, and instead opted to humbly serve his country as its first elected president, the observance of his birthday is really a celebration of our Constitution and the entire republican system of governance upon which our nation depends. In that sense, “Presidents’ Day,” aka George Washington’s birthday, is truly a day to recognize that we are a republic, not a monarchy, when the president can now literally rule over our bodies and criminalize our breathing of free air.

In a revolutionary break from the rest of the 18th-century political world, the newly crafted Constitution vested the president with executive authority to faithfully execute the laws, not craft the laws. When contrasting the power of a king with that of a president, Alexander Hamilton wrote in Federalist #69 that “the one [a president] can confer no privileges whatever; the other [a king] can make denizens of aliens, noblemen of commoners; can erect corporations with all the rights incident to corporate bodies.”

How far we have fallen that we now have a president who confers all sorts of privileges, including “making denizens of aliens,” the very example of legislative authority Hamilton promised the people of New York would not be vested in the office of chief executive. We now have a president who can use a virus to muzzle the mouths of the citizens, while releasing thousands of foreign invaders into our country with no care for spreading the virus.

Although the power of the presidency was not to have any semblance of the power of the king, our Founders still felt that the faithful execution of the laws was a grave task that should only be vested in one man and in a man of faith. In defending the decision by the Constitutional Convention to vest the executive authority in one man instead of a tribunal, the great James Wilson said the following during debate at the Pennsylvania Ratification Convention:

He cannot act improperly, and hide either his negligence or inattention; he cannot roll upon any other person the weight of his criminality; no appointment can take place without his nomination; and he is responsible for every nomination he makes.

Hamilton in Federalist #70 explained the need for a one-man executive as such:

It is evident from these considerations, that the plurality of the Executive tends to deprive the people of the two greatest securities they can have for the faithful exercise of any delegated power, first, the restraints of public opinion, which lose their efficacy, as well on account of the division of the censure attendant on bad measures among a number, as on account of the uncertainty on whom it ought to fall; and, second, the opportunity of discovering with facility and clearness the misconduct of the persons they trust, in order either to their removal from office or to their actual punishment in cases which admit of it.

However, the Founders never envisioned two problems: the creation of political parties and the decline of religion and virtue among our civil society, two issues Washington ominously warned about in his farewell address.

Political parties have rendered our separation of powers and checks and balances moot. The legislature can no longer properly check a lawless executive because it is most often composed of enough party loyalists who will operate in tandem with the president instead of as a separate body of government. Also, one of the parties, the GOP, refuses to effectively check the ruling class in all bodies of government.

Moreover, we have lost a sense of how important religious virtue is for both the president and the people as a whole. The man we celebrate at this time of year, our very first president, devoted the largest share of his farewell address to the importance of religion and virtue:

Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports. In vain would that man claim the tribute of patriotism, who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness, these firmest props of the duties of men and citizens. The mere politician, equally with the pious man, ought to respect and to cherish them. A volume could not trace all their connections with private and public felicity. Let it simply be asked: Where is the security for property, for reputation, for life, if the sense of religious obligation desert the oaths which are the instruments of investigation in courts of justice? And let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion. Whatever may be conceded to the influence of refined education on minds of peculiar structure, reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle.

When the president no longer believes religion is needed to maintain morality and when much of the society agrees with that view, there is nothing keeping the most powerful man in the country from acting despotically. But thankfully, for all of us, the one president who could have been a king was guided by the religious virtues to place the interests of the republic over his own power or ambition. Nobody expressed the importance of George Washington better than Calvin Coolidge during a 1927 speech honoring our first president:

His was the directing spirit without which there would have been no independence, no Union, no Constitution, and no Republic. His ways were the ways of truth. He built for eternity. His influence grows. His stature increases with the increasing years. In wisdom of action, in purity of character, he stands alone. We cannot yet estimate him. We can only indicate our reverence for him and thank the Divine Providence which sent him to serve and inspire his fellow men.

What shocked the world more than Washington’s defeat of the British was that he voluntarily resigned his commission as commander in chief of the Continental Army on Dec. 23, 1783. Rather than become the king of the new country, as had been the custom since the dawn of time upon leading the defeat of one regime, Washington humbly told the Congress, “I retire from the great theatre of action, and bidding an affectionate farewell to this august body, under whose orders I have so long acted, I here offer my commission, and take my leave of all the employments of public life.”

King George III, upon hearing about this astonishing act of humility, reportedly told the American-born artist Benjamin West: “If [Washington] does that, he will be the greatest man in the world.”

Indeed, he had become the greatest man in the world because he personally ensured that America would become a country of great men where each man would be the king of his own castle and all would work together to create the great experiment of self-government for the greater society.

When Washington was eventually called back for service to chair the Constitutional Convention and become the nation’s first president, he could also have become a dictator but declined to do so. His greatness was most evident in his ability to strike the perfect balance in humbly devolving power to the people, while concurrently maintaining a steady hand as the first president, so that the nations of the world, as well as the reluctant states, would respect the power of the newly created government.

Washington perfectly expressed this balance and struck this tone in his state of the union address of 1795. In referring to his firm but merciful quelling of the Whiskey Rebellion the year before (he ultimately pardoned the leaders), Washington wrote to Congress:

For though I shall always think it a sacred duty to exercise with firmness and energy the constitutional powers with which I am vested, yet it appears to me no less consistent with the public good than it is with my personal feelings to mingle in the operations of Government every degree of moderation and tenderness which the national justice, dignity, and safety may permit.

Over 200 years later, we have deviated from self-government in every way imaginable, culminating with the ultimate display of tyrannical executive power this past year with COVID fascism and now with the assault on the First Amendment rights of conservatives. As George Washington said, “If freedom of speech is taken away, then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep, to the slaughter.”

Many of us have wondered how the American people so quickly forgot the importance of their own power and the limitations of executive power in this country. Perhaps the answer is rooted in the fact that we have forgotten the origin of the holiday celebrating the very man who bequeathed us all this power of self-governance.

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San Francisco Mayor London Breed blasts school board for having a plan to rename schools by April but not a plan to reopen

The San Francisco school Board on Tuesday followed through with a vote to rename 44 public schools apparently controversial namesakes like George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, and Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.).

As TheBlaze previously reported, in October San Francisco school officials on the School Names Advisory Committee created a list of 44 sites that featured buildings named for historical figures, proposing to change the names of these buildings. The committee was tasked with identifying “whether the name on a school met the criteria for renaming, which includes anyone or anything associated with slavery, genocide, colonization, exploitation and oppression, among other factors.”

The criteria for a school name to be deemed “inappropriate” included: Anyone directly involved in the colonization of people; slave owners or participants in enslavement; perpetrators of genocide or slavery; those who exploit workers/people; those who directly oppressed or abused women, children, queer or transgender people; those connected to any human rights or environmental abuses; those who are known racists and/or white supremacists and/or espoused racist beliefs.

KNTV-TV reported Tuesday that the school board voted to adopt the committee’s recommendations and change the names of the 44 public school buildings on the list. The names include Lowell High, Lincoln High, Washington High, Roosevelt Middle, John Muir Elementary and Feinstein Elementary.

Schools named for Presidents George Washington and Thomas Jefferson were included because those Founding Fathers were slave owners. Abraham Lincoln High School will be renamed because the nation’s 16th president, who issued the Emancipation Proclamation ending slavery in the South, also ordered the executions of 38 Dakota tribe Native Americans involved in a violent conflict with white settlers in Minnesota.

Dianne Feinstein Elementary, a school named for California’s sitting senior Democratic senator, made the list because as mayor of San Francisco in 1986, Feinstein reportedly replaced a vandalized Confederate flag at City Hall.

In October, San Francisco Mayor London Breed criticized the school board for moving forward with the plan to rename schools during the pandemic, calling it “offensive.”

On Wednesday, the mayor issued another statement blasting schools for producing a plan to rename buildings by April but offering no plan to reopen the schools.

“I understand the significance of the name of a school, and a school’s name should instill a feeling of pride in every student that walks through its doors, regardless of their race, religion, or sexual orientation,” Breed said in a statement.

“What I cannot understand is why the School Board is advancing a plan to have all these schools renamed by April, when there isn’t a plan to have our kids back in the classroom by then. Our students are suffering, and we should be talking about getting them in classrooms, getting them mental health support, and getting them the resources they need in this challenging time. Our families are frustrated about a lack of a plan, and they are especially frustrated with the fact that the discussion of these plans weren’t even on the agenda for last night’s School Board meeting.

“I believe our children should be a part of the conversation around the renaming of their schools, and I believe the education and discussions need to happen within our school walls. Let’s bring the same urgency and focus on getting our kids back in the classroom, and then we can have that longer conversation about the future of school names.”

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How the Washington Administration Responded to an “Insurrection”

The recent protests and storming of the U.S. Capitol building on Jan. 6 produced a hysterical reaction from both pundits and the federal government. This contrasts wildly with the response to an actual rebellion during the Republic’s early days.

The new federal government didn’t respond to the so-called Whiskey Rebellion with crackdowns on civil liberties to “prevent another rebellion” as many seem to want to do today.

In 1794 Kentucky and Pennsylvania farmers took up arms in opposition to a federal whiskey excise tax. The Whiskey Rebellion concluded with President George Washington calling up the militia to suppress the rebels, who dispersed before any real fighting occurred.

Interpretations of the rebellion vary. Some view Washington’s decision as a vital move to preserve the then-fledgling federal government’s legitimacy after Shay’s Rebellion eight years prior had prompted the founders to replace the Articles of Confederation in favor of a stronger central government. However, others consider the rebels as patriots resisting an unjust tax on whiskey, which was frequently used as a means of exchange in frontier areas where coinage was scarce.

To be sure, Washington reacted initially in a manner utterly restrained compared to what we could expect today. Even after invoking the Militia Act of 1792 allowing him to call up state militiamen, he sent state officials to the rebels and tried to reach a peaceful resolution, without success.

However, a separate issue to look at is the aftermath of the rebellion. Roughly 150 men were arrested and tried for treason. Yet only two men were found guilty, and they were later pardoned by Washington himself.

In his seventh state of the union address Washington defended his decision:

For though I shall always think it a sacred duty to exercise with firmness and energy the constitutional powers with which I am vested, yet it appears to me no less consistent with the public good than it is with my personal feelings to mingle in the operations of Government every degree of moderation and tenderness which the national justice, dignity, and safety may permit.

As historian Carol Berkin noted in a 2017 lecture, “not a single person really ever served a jail term. Everybody was given amnesty. Nobody was cruelly beaten or destroyed. But the power, the authority of the federal government was upheld.”

Perhaps Washington and other Founders holding office realized the appearance of hypocrisy for condemning men as traitors who acted as they had just a few decades earlier.

At the same time, it’s not so much what Washington and Congress did as what they didn’t do or even propose to do. Reading through diaries, letters, and correspondence from founders ranging from George Washington and Alexander Hamilton to Thomas Jefferson written during the rebellion, there is no instance I could find in which they advocated or suggested the civil rights restrictions such as firearms ownership or freedom of speech and assembly. There was no call for a permanent standing army. This is on top of the fact that nothing was actually proposed and then enacted.

In fact, Jefferson wrote sympathetically of the rebellion in a Dec. 28, 1794 letter to John Adams, calling the whiskey tax “an infernal one. The first error was to admit it by the Constitution.”

He wrote further that hatred of the law in those states was “universal, and has now associated to it a detestation of the government; & that separation which perhaps was a very distant & problematical event, is now near, & certain, & determined in the mind of every man.”

Not surprisingly, Jefferson would later repeal the excise tax when elected president.

Even federalists like Alexander Hamilton in ways sought to avoid violence that might have demonstrated the power of the new government, albeit he did advocate hanging some of the rebel leaders. In an Aug. 29, 1794 letter to Maryland Governor Thomas Lee, he wrote of avoiding “the necessity of using force now & at future periods” by keeping the militia deployed in good morale.

In all the correspondence Hamilton had with George Washington, not one advocated for the confiscation of firearms from the regions where the rebellion had occurred. Nor was there a call to restrict firearm ownership of any type among the general population to prevent similar rebellions in the future. The federal government didn’t use the “crisis” as an excuse to enlarge itself, as some sought with the Alien and Sedition Act passed four years later

While Washington’s best opportunity to make himself a military dictator occurred just after the War of Independence ended with him still in charge of the continental army, the Whiskey Rebellion theoretically could have afforded him another chance – one that he likely never even contemplated.

The comparatively restrained response by Washington to the rebellion demonstrated that it is not necessary to take away liberties to maintain civil order or “keep us safe.”

Writing in reaction to Shay’s Rebellion, Thomas Jefferson wrote a letter to James Madison saying rebellions were a “medecine necessary for the sound health of government” and that “honest republican governors” should be “so mild in their punishment of rebellions, as not to discourage them too much.”

What many people fail to grasp is that rebellions and insurrections aren’t always found in physical confrontations, and the “medicine necessary for the sound health of government” can be applied just as effectively through the nullification of unconstitutional federal acts. Incidentally, Jefferson referred to nullification as the “rightful remedy.”

The histrionic and totalitarian rhetoric coming from the federal government today over a handful of people storming the U.S. Capitol demonstrates how fragile its perceived legitimacy is today. It is a government that overreacts to minor incidents because deep down its members are terrified of any meaningful defiance or resistance to their rule.

They realize how easily D.C. tyranny could end if the American people were united in common opposition to unconstitutional actions in a manner that reduced their power, rather than give the largest government in the world the further pretext to expand it.

The post How the Washington Administration Responded to an “Insurrection” first appeared on Tenth Amendment Center.

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Thank you, almighty God, for your blessings this Thanksgiving

This year, Thanksgiving Day falls on Thursday the 26th of November, marking 231 years to the exact date of the first Thanksgiving Day proclaimed by President George Washington. Forgive the cliche of quoting from Washington’s proclamation, but the simple fact is Washington issued a near-perfect statement of how Americans ought to think about the Thanksgiving holiday, and it’s worth honoring by remembrance.

A mere three paragraphs, Washington’s proclamation begins with an acknowledgement, the proclamation itself follows, and the president concludes with a request for the American people.

First, Washington acknowledges it is “the duty of all Nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey his will, to be grateful for his benefits, and humbly to implore his protection and favor.” These days, Americans are very fond of demanding that government protect our various and innumerable rights. Undoubtedly, the purpose of just government is to secure the rights and liberties of its citizens. But a system of self-government such as we have will fail and will be unjust if the people, who are sovereign, do not recognize their duties. We each have a duty to our neighbors to respect their rights. We have a duty to follow just laws. To be good citizens. To be kind to one another, to serve each other, to help those in need, and for Washington, to be thankful for God’s provisions and to pray for his protection and favor.

In recognition of this duty, Washington proclaims “Thursday the 26th day of November next” to be a day for “the People of these States” to devote to God. Americans are to thank Him, “the beneficent Author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be” for “his kind care and protection,” for his mercy during the Revolutionary War, for the “tranquillity, union, and plenty” which followed, for “the peaceable and rational manner” in which the new American government was established, and “for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed,” the “means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge,” and also for “all the great and various favors which he hath been pleased to confer upon us.”

These blessings here recounted are permanent things. Americans continue to enjoy the goodness God has shown to our forefathers, which speaks of God’s eternal nature. The sovereign King of Heaven, in His boundless mercy, saw fit to permit a rag-tag assembly of English colonists to overthrow the most powerful empire on earth and raised up wise political leaders to frame a Constitution that’s lasted for 233 years — a Constitution that to this day protects your rights and liberties and enables you to read this article in the safety of your own home, surrounded by family and friends and delicious food that, Lord willing, will last for several days.

And for those less fortunate, who may lack family or friends and food, did God not provide a country with many who can share with their countrymen? It is a great sin and transgression indeed for those of us who can share to neglect our duties to those who lack.

Yet sin is a reality we all must confront. People treat each other wickedly. We are unkind in our words. We are hateful and murderous in our thoughts. We are greedy, selfish, and self-serving, neglectful and thoughtless of those in need. We are proud and boastful, yet who can truly say they’ve always done right and never harmed another by word or deed? We lie to each other. We only love those who love us first, and even then we love poorly. We are unforgiving. And we’re too often ungrateful.

This is why, in the third paragraph, Washington requests that the American people “unite in most humbly offering our prayers and supplications to the great Lord and Ruler of Nations and beseech him to pardon our national and other transgressions.”

The greatest blessing freely offered by God to man is pardon for our sins. God offers forgiveness for all the wrongs we’ve done to Him and to each other to those who repent. Once free of our individual and national sins, He enables us “whether in public or private stations, to perform our several and relative duties properly and punctually—to render our national government a blessing to all the people, by constantly being a Government of wise, just, and constitutional laws, discreetly and faithfully executed and obeyed.”

So giving thanks to God doesn’t simply involve thankful prayer, though that is important and necessary! It also involves obedience to His will, which is “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind” and “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” We must repent of our sins toward one another and pray for forgiveness. We must love each other by performing our duties as citizens, which is to act righteously, to obey just laws, to respect each other, to help and support each other, both publicly and privately.

As Thanksgiving Day 2020 approaches, I cannot help but think of the hostility too many Americans feel towards one another after a contentious and divisive presidential election. I know this as truth: The anger, frustration, and anxieties felt by Americans on both the left and the right are the consequences of sin. No one is blameless. We have all sinned. If we loved each other as we ought, if we performed our duties as citizens to each other as we ought, would any right-thinking person be outraged or anxious about the White House changing parties for four short years?

This Thanksgiving, I am thankful for a God who loves us and offers forgiveness for our sins. I am thankful for a God who listens to and answers prayer. I’m thankful that God rules in heaven, that all authority on earth is on loan from Him, and that He will enact justice when we will not, no matter who occupies the presidency. I am thankful for a God who taught us, when we pray, to ask for our “daily bread,” reminding us that we are to rely on Him for His provisions each day and that we ought not to worry about tomorrow. I am thankful for a country and a Constitution that protect my right to worship this God. And it’s my intention and earnest prayer that in showing my gratitude, I fulfill my duty as an American citizen and a patriot to love my neighbors, as God commands.

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” — Philippians 4:6-7

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I Don’t Side With Your Faction

Is the enemy of our enemy our friend?

I suppose in the abstract, the depends. But when it comes to battling the biggest, most powerful government in the world, I think the answer is usually yes.

To frame it into a more concrete strategy question: should we work with people who generally reject our broader constitutional principles if the partnership can lead to an incremental shift toward constitutional fidelity and liberty? For instance, should we work with people on the left to fight against the growing police state? Or right-wingers to fight gun laws?

To me, this is a no-brainer.

Of course, we should.

In fact, single-issue coalitions have been the bread-and-butter of the Tenth Amendment Center’s work for years.

For instance, we have maintained a strong relationship with the ACLU and work closely with them on surveillance issues. The fact that the organization is awful on the Second Amendment and the vast majority of ACLU staffers and supporters sit solidly on the political left and embrace a “living breathing” view of the Constitution doesn’t stop us from working with them to rein in the surveillance state. In fact, we have joined coalitions with organizations far to the left of the ACLU to successfully ban government facial recognition surveillance.

On the other hand, we work closely with right-wing organizations to fight federal gun control. The fact that a lot of these people happily ignore the Constitution to embrace the police state and foreign wars doesn’t stop us from working with them to protect the right to keep and bear arms.

It’s pragmatically stupid to say to tell somebody on the left, “I’m not going to work with you on surveillance because I disagree with your wealth redistribution scheme.” In the same way, it would be stupid to say, “I’m not going to work with neocons on Second Amendment issues because they suck on war.”

Sorry, But We’re Irrelevant

Those of us who believe in following the Constitution every issue, every time, no exceptions, no excuses would be wise to remember we are an overwhelming minority. Very few people embrace our philosophy and most people aren’t interested in the broader principles of liberty. If we apply an ideological or constitutional litmus test before working with people on political activism, we will never do any effective political activism because virtually everybody will fail our test.

Practically speaking, it takes large groups of people to create the momentum necessary to change policy. Newsflash: constitutional originalists and those of us who want to truly limited federal government aren’t a large group of people. In fact, we’re politically irrelevant in today’s sharply divide left-right paradigm. Yes, that sounds harsh, but it’s the cold reality we have to live with.

If we want to change policy, it’s imperative to form coalitions with other people – from the left and the right – in order to cash in on the synergy of the group. We might be a minority when it comes to the Constitution and liberty, but we can join with others to create an interest group strong enough to limit police surveillance, end enforcement of gun control, expand food freedom, or nullify the drug war. These actions might not mean absolute liberty in our time, but they will allow us to live a little more free. And that’s the ultimate goal, isn’t it?

In Practice

So, why not work with BLM sympathizers to push back the police state?

In the current political environment, there is suddenly a lot of interest in curtailing police militarization, especially on the left. This is something we’ve been pushing for years at the Tenth Amendment Center. The right was kind of interested in this when Obama was in office, but as soon as Trump was elected, they become full-throated supporters of weaponized cops. So, if the left wants to fight police militarization, I’m more than happy for their help. If we can get bills passed that limit surveillance or opt local cops out of federal militarization programs, that’s a net-win for liberty.

But aren’t we empowering the left and making it more likely they will “take over?”

I doubt that very seriously, but if they do, they won’t have those police state tools at their disposal. When we successfully limit the power of the state, we limit the power of whichever political persuasion happens to control the levers of the state.

In short, constitutional restrictions on federal power restrict whoever is in control – the left or the right. And by the same token, expansions of federal power, even for “good” policy outcomes, means more power for the next person in office. Every constitutional exception you make for Donald Trump today will set a precedent for Joe Biden or AOC in the future.

But I Don’t Trust You

Very few of us were born into the philosophy of liberty. Most of us came from the left or the right. And even though we’ve embraced libertarian principles, we tend to hold some sympathies with one side of the political spectrum and to distrust the other. I came from the right. Even though I recognize both the political left and right sucks, it’s easier for me to forgive the foibles of my former cohorts on the right and demonize those on the left. To borrow a phrase from the movie “Pretty Woman,” it’s the fork I know.

Lack of trust makes it difficult to work with people we ideologically disagree with. As one friend put it, “You shouldn’t be working with those lefties. Commies aren’t trustworthy.”

And of course, I’ve heard folks sympathetic to the left say similar things about “fascist” right-wingers.

But when you boil it all down does it really matter if they’re trustworthy or not? If they help me achieve a policy goal, their motives don’t really matter to me. The point is to get something practical done for liberty.

I’m not suggesting compromising principles. I’m suggesting it’s wise to work with people when they have the exact same policy goal and when implementing that policy will further the cause of liberty.

The operative question isn’t “what is everybody’s broad philosophical worldview.” The operative question is “will doing A make me more free and will working with these people to achieve that goal make us more likely to achieve it.”

If I can answer yes to those questions, I’m moving forward.

And you know what? When you actually talk to people in a cooperative way, sometimes it opens doors to change their minds. Think about it. At some point, your mind likely changed. Mine certainly did. Perhaps we would be better served in viewing people who hold opposing views as potential converts rather than enemies. Samual Adams hinted at this in an August 1776 speech.

“Having been a slave to the influence of opinions early acquired, and distinctions generally received, I am ever inclined not to despise but pity those who are yet in darkness.”

Here’s the harsh reality: if I’m only willing to work with people who share my ideological worldview, I will sit here by myself and watch YouTube all day. The truth is sitting around virtue-signaling your hatred of the left or the right in your little echo-chamber isn’t going to make you more free. Getting policies changed in a way that limits the power of the state will make you more free.

I’m happy to work with anybody that will help me do that, even in a limited way.

Because my enemy isn’t the left. And my enemy isn’t the right. My enemy is the biggest, most powerful government in the history of the world.

We have split into sharply divided political factions at war with each other. I think sometimes, we get so wrapped up in beating the other side, we forget who the real enemy is. When we focus on “owning the libs” or ‘”resisting the right,” we forget that the federal government is trampling over all of us. A comment George Washington made during his farewell address was prophetic.

“The alternate domination of one faction over another, sharpened by the spirit of revenge, natural to party dissension, which in different ages and countries has perpetrated the most horrid enormities, is itself a frightful despotism. But this leads at length to a more formal and permanent despotism. The disorders and miseries which result gradually incline the minds of men to seek security and repose in the absolute power of an individual; and sooner or later the chief of some prevailing faction, more able or more fortunate than his competitors, turns this disposition to the purposes of his own elevation, on the ruins of public liberty.”

I don’t side with your faction. I side with the Constitution.

This article was adapted from an article originally published at the Libertarian Institute.

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BREAKING: Cornwallis surrenders in Yorktown; end of war may be in sight

Editor’s note: In order to allow our staff to enjoy the 4th of July holiday with their families, TheBlaze will be running a series of articles today commemorating the Revolutionary War, which won America her freedom. God bless America, and all of you.

YORKTOWN, VIRGINIA (OCTOBER 19, 1781) — After nearly a month of intense battle, Lt. Gen. Charles Cornwallis, commander of the British forces in the southern theater, signed a formal agreement of British surrender today, ending the Battle of Yorktown.

The surrender, which was overseen by Gen. George Washington, marked the end of the bloody battle, which had raged on since September. Washington and Cornwallis began surrender negotiations on Oct. 17 at the Moore House.

Lord Cornwallis did not attend the actual signing of surrender, citing an illness, and sent his second-in-command, Gen. Charles O’Hara, to the ceremony. There, O’Hara carried Cornwallis’ sword to American and French commanders.

In all, Cornwallis surrendered nearly 8,000 men and seamen, more than 100 cannons and more than a dozen ships. As British troops marched out to surrender, a band reportedly played the song, “The World Turned Upside Down.”

The decisive Continental victory has boosted American morale and many hope it will be the final major battle of the war as American delegates have already begun to discuss what negotiations with the British to formally surrender the war may look like.

The American victory came more than five years after America declared its independence from King George III on July 4, 1776.

The battle began late last month after Gen. Washington with the help of the Marquis de Lafayette, the Count de Rochambeau and the Count de Grasse were able to surround Cornwallis’ weathered troops in southern Virginia.

Count de Grasse was able to win a sea victory in early September, defeating the British Navy and preventing them from providing Cornwallis with supplies and reinforcements. That, along with thousands of French reinforcements and Washington’s battle-tested troops, proved too much to overcome for Cornwallis.

According to initial reports, 200 to 300 British troops were killed in the battle while an unknown number were wounded when taken prisoner. Less than 100 French and Continental troops were killed, while it is estimated that just over 300 were wounded.

It is reported that a British ship carrying 7,000 men was on its way to provide aid to Cornwallis, but that ship never arrived, potentially because of the French Navy’s command of the Chesapeake Bay.

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British forces capture New York; Washington lucky to escape with Continental Army intact

Editor’s note: In order to allow our staff to enjoy the 4th of July holiday with their families, TheBlaze will be running a series of articles today commemorating the Revolutionary War, which won America her freedom. God bless America, and all of you.

NEW YORK (AUGUST 31, 1776) — The first major battle since America officially declared its independence from Great Britain did not go well for the Continental Army, as American troops were driven from New York in headlong flight.

Worse, Gen. George Washington’s conduct in the war has some questioning his strategic ability, as many military experts say that only a series of extremely lucky missteps by the British Army allowed Washington — and the Continental Army with him — to escape the island intact.

The British invasion of New York has long been expected, ever since Gen. William Howe quit the city of Boston following a months-long siege by American forces. Since Howe’s flight, American military leadership has anticipated that Great Britain would order him to capture New York, as Britain has made no secret of its plans to win the war by choking off access to the vitally important Hudson River, which is often referred to as the “backbone” of the Mid-Atlantic colonies.

Gen. Washington prepared for the hammer’s blow by directing Gen. Charles Lee to prepare the city for battle. Lee devised a plan and erected a series of intricate defenses in the city, envisioning a guerrilla fight in which the British would be forced to take New York “street by street,” hopefully suffering tremendous casualties during the course of the battle.

However, when New York’s civilian authority learned of this plan, they balked in horror at the possible devastation that might be done to the city by the British war machine if Lee’s plan were carried out. Due to confusion about the extent of Washington’s authority, Washington felt forced to abandon Lee’s plan in favor of a more traditional defense.

According to sources within the Continental Army, some of Washington’s officers felt hamstrung by Washington’s decision to allow Lee’s defenses to be dismantled. According to one Army officer, who asked to remain anonymous, “We never really stood a chance of holding New York, but with those defenses, we at least had a chance to give the British a bloody nose. Without those defenses? We were sitting ducks out there.”

Indeed, the chances of a traditional defense were doomed when the British ships, Phoenix and Rose
, easily overcame the Continental’s river defenses and took control of the harbor virtually unopposed. This allowed the British fleet, numbering some 130 ships, to land aground a force that was many times over the size of Washington’s.

In retrospect, Washington was doomed to lose the battle of New York before the first shot was fired; however, some claim that mistakes made by Washington put the Continental Army in position to suffer much heavier losses than they otherwise would have done, and almost caused them to be obliterated entirely.

First, some sources within the military criticized Washington’s decision to send home some 900 cavalrymen from Connecticut who arrived to participate in the defense, telling them that they would not be needed. According to one Continental Army officer, who asked not to be identified, Washington’s failure to understand the scouting value of this cavalry force allowed the British to achieve complete surprise and completely flank Gen. Israel Putnam, whom some in Congress have blamed for the Army’s failure in New York.

Some officers, however, have noted that Putnam was flanked because he was totally unaware that the British had landed some 10,000 soldiers on Long Island, who marched unnoticed for miles up roads unoccupied by Americans. According to this officer, “those troops had to have been kicking up an awful lot of dust and making a ton of noise, and some troops on horseback would have really allowed us to at least know they were coming.”

As it was, the main force of the British invading army was able to get completely to the rear of Putnam’s forces before Americans were aware, and the result was predictable: Total carnage, combined with chaos and headlong flight. In the first day of fighting, the Continental Army lost around 1,300 men; almost 15 percent of the entire force on Long Island.

Others criticized Washington’s decision to split his forces in the face of a numerically superior foe, attempting to defend both Manhattan and Long Island, albeit inadequately.

Although many would have taken advantage of Gen. Howe’s curiously slow pace after his initial rout of Putnam’s forces on Long Island to quit the defense of the island entirely, Gen. Washington ignored the advice of many on his staff and actually committed reinforcements to Brooklyn, determined to make a show of defending a by-now indefensible position.

Eventually, however, Washington was faced with the reality that his men on Long Island were completely encircled by the Royal Navy and vastly outnumbered, and after a council with his top generals, ordered an attempt to evacuate the remaining troops from Long Island.

The army ultimately may have been saved by a blustering storm that immobilized the Royal Navy and allowed Washington to assemble a rag-tag team of small craft to evacuate his troops to Manhattan under cover of the storm and an extremely dense fog that limited visibility to mere feet.

Although Washington publicly acknowledged the urgent need to leave New York lest the Continental Army be “cut to pieces,” sources within the Army said that Washington was obsessed with scoring a “Bunker Hill” style victory of his own, and thus prepared to attempt an ill-advised defense of Harlem Heights. According to sources in the army, Washington only abandoned this surely suicidal plan when Gen. Charles Lee arrived in New York and delivered a dire warning concerning the probable fruits of Washington’s proposed plan.

At the very last minute, the Continental Army fled Manhattan, saved by the incredible bravery of Col. John Glover and his Massachusetts soldiers, who fought a desperate action around Pelham Bay to delay the British attack so that the Continentals could achieve a semi-orderly retreat and preserve precious artillery and weaponry, which are already in short supply for the Americans.

Washington was also accused of defying Congress’ orders during his retreat from the city. According to congressional sources, Washington sought permission to destroy the city of New York upon his exit, so as to deny its comforts to British soldiers, but Congress refused to acquiesce. However, according to witnesses, fires that destroyed substantial portions of the city were set by men who were known members of the Continental Army.

For his part, Washington has refused to join in the public condemnation of Putnam, and promises that he will avoid risking the fate of the entire Continental Army in a single skirmish with the British in the future.

Americans hope that the lessons Washington has learned in this battle will serve him well as America settles in for what it looks like might be a long war for independence.

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Joe Biden: The gov’t has an ‘obligation’ to protect monuments to people like George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and … Christopher Columbus

Far-left woke radicals have been taking advantage of current racial justice protests to attempt to tear down several memorials of historical figures important to the United States’ founding and heritage.

Set aside the controversial statues of Confederate leaders and military men, these leftist are determined to see monuments to the likes of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Teddy Roosevelt, Christopher Columbus, Abraham Lincoln, and others removed from the public square. And if their demands are not met forthwith, they’ve made it clear that they’ll start the defacing and destruction on their own.

So what is a liberal member of the Democratic Party base to do when their party’s presumptive nominee not only says the statues of genuine American heroes should be left alone but issues a call for the government to expend resources protecting those statues?

Surely the unhinged protesters in the street were not thrilled to hear former Vice President Joe Biden, the Democrats’ only hope to end President Donald Trump’s reign, make just such a declaration Tuesday.

What did Biden say?

During Biden’s first news conference in months, one reporter asked the former veep for his views on the current controversy over memorials.

Biden made his stance pretty clear: Put the rebel statues in museums and protect those that honor the likes of Jefferson, Washington, and even Columbus.

He began by noting that memorials for Confederates who fought against the United States in support of secession and slavery “belong in museums; they don’t belong in public places.”

Then he went there.

“With regard to those statues and monuments, like the Jefferson Memorial or whatever, I think there’s an obligation that the government protect those monuments,” he said, noting that they were “different” because they were “a remembrance” and not a “revering” of people known for their controversial views on race and slavery.

He noted that the Founders and other historically important figures had “much broader views,” while acknowledging that they might have also had troubling views on race “in their past” that were “distasteful.”

“Taking down, toppling a Christopher Columbus statue or George Washington’s statue or et cetera,” Biden continued, “I think that is something that the government has an opportunity and a responsibility to protect from happening.”

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Vandals splatter NYC’s iconic Washington Square Park arch with balloons full of red paint

A couple of vandals opted to show their wokeness Monday morning by splattering red paint all over the two statues of George Washington on the famous arch at New York’s Washington Square Park, the New York Post reported.

Police said they nabbed two suspects who threw balloons filled with red paint at the iconic structure, which was caught on surveillance tape.

The duo — one man and one woman — launched their attack at around 3:20 a.m. and fled the scene on Citi Bikes, according to the Post, leaving behind evidence of their crime. Cops said that not only did they find remnants of paint-filled balloons on the scene, the suspects also left behind a blue plastic cooler they’d used to transport their ordnance, which still had red paint in it when they found it.

The cops said the vandals also painted 24 body outlines around the park’s fountain with white paint and then hit those images with red balloons to make it appear the bodies had been shot.

City crews were scrubbing paint off the statues early Monday morning.

This is the second time in a week that a famous New York City statue of George Washington has been vandalized.

On Wednesday, police busted a man in the act of painting “slave owner” on the Washington statue in Manhattan’s Union Square Park.

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Nancy Pelosi ‘all for’ holding a ‘review’ on taking down statues of Washington and Jefferson

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) suggested holding formal discussions over whether statues of Presidents George Washington and Thomas Jefferson should be taken down, saying she is “all for” such a review.

What are the details?

During an interview Thursday with Washington Post Live, host Robert Costa asked Pelosi for her response to activists who believe “there needs to be a reckoning of some sort” for America’s slave-owning Founding Fathers.

Speaker Pelosi said that while she feels any monuments to Confederates should be removed without question—albeit safely—she is also in favor of talks over whether statues depicting the nation’s first and third presidents should also be taken down.

“I’m concerned about slavery in our country. I think it’s a sin,” the Speaker told Costa. “I also am concerned about what happened to Native Americans in our country, so we have a list of grievances that are part of the early years of our country and we do not want that to be continued by glorifying any of the people who perpetrated those injustices.”

Pelosi then suggested, “Rather than tearing down and defacing (monuments), why don’t we just have a review.”

“I’m all for it. Let’s review this,” she reiterated. “Why are we glorifying the sins of the past? That doesn’t mean because Thomas Jefferson or George Washington or others were slaveowners that we should undermine what they did for our country.”

The Democrat said when it comes to Confederates, “that’s a different story,” then added, “But you know what, subject everything to scrutiny and make a decision.”

You can watch the entire interview below. The discussion on monuments honoring the Founding Fathers begins at the 07:00 mark:

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi in Conversation with Robert Costa (Full Stream 6/25)

Anything else?

The speaker’s comments come as the Trump administration has called up the National Guard to assist in protecting monuments in Washington, D.C., and told U.S. marshals to prepare to defend monuments nationwide from destruction following weeks of riots that have left statues toppled across America.

Confederate tributes were largely the target of activists during the initial weeks of protests, but statues of Founding Fathers, other U.S. presidents, and even abolitionists have been torn down by mobs in recent days.

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Cops bust man in the act of painting ‘slave owner’ on George Washington statue in Manhattan park in broad daylight

As protests and riots have expanded across the country, so have the targets of demonstrators’ ire.

First, rioters went after police-related items, especially precincts and cop cars.

Then their attention turned to Confederate flags and statues, as well as memorials to Christopher Columbus.

Now their list of unacceptable structures includes those dedicated to abolitionists, Founding Fathers, generals who defeated the Confederate South, and emancipators — and even a famous progressive president.

The most recent example reportedly occurred in Manhattan’s Union Square Park where police say they busted a 37-year-old man Wednesday in the act of defacing the park’s statue of George Washington in broad daylight, the New York Post reported.

According to the cops, the suspect was caught just shortly before noon writing “slave owner” on the statue and had bottles of paint, cans of spray paint, and multiple brushes.

The suspect, Richard Maye, the Post said, has been charged with “two counts of making graffiti, criminal mischief and other misdemeanor graffiti charges.” According to the paper, Maye did not respond to requests for comment.

Efforts to to deface or tear down statues dedicated to American figures has grown exponentially over the last few weeks — often without apparent regard for the subject of the memorial.

For example, rioters in Washington, D.C., went after the Emancipation Memorial of Abraham Lincoln on Tuesday night and threatened to pull the “motherf***er” down on Thursday night. The memorial, which shows former President Lincoln and a free slave, was built in 1876 and paid for entirely by freed slaves who wanted to honor the man who signed the Emancipation Proclamation. Frederick Douglass, a former slave and friend of Lincoln, gave the keynote speech at the memorial’s dedication.