On June 25th 1959 at age 12½ I became a United States citizen. It was a warm, sunny day in Manhattan when I raised my right hand in the federal courthouse and took the following oath:
“I hereby declare, on oath, that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty of whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen; that I will support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I will bear arms on behalf of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform noncombatant service in the Armed Forces of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform work of national importance under civilian direction when required by the law; and that I take this obligation freely without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; so help me God.” (Emphasis added)
Five years earlier my parents became U.S. citizens. I was worried all day that they would not pass their ‘test” and we would have to leave America. When they came home from their swearing in, I was one happy seven year old.
For the past 50 years I have been faithful to my citizenship oath, supporting unequivocally the rights of all Americans guaranteed under the constitution. Unfortunately, the same can not be said for the thousands of elected officials who have served in Congress and legislatures throughout the country and the judges who supposedly have been guardians of the American people’s constitutional rights.
Instead, both politicians and judges have turned the constitution on its head and have created new rights-the right of some people to other people’s money, the right to destroy human life in the womb, and the right of the federal government to invade other countries. For nearly one hundred years-since the creation of the Federal Reserve and the addition of the 16th amendment to the constitution authorizing an income tax– politicians have turned America into a welfare-warfare state.
We are now witnessing the collapse of the welfare state. Rather than step back and evaluate the negative consequences of the tax, spend, borrow and regulations of the past ten decades, Team Obama is building on the Bush legacy–monstrous federal budget deficits as far as the eye can see, obscene money creation by the Federal Reserve to “stimulate” the economy, accelerating federal government intervention into the economy, and continuing a policy of preemptive war.
Despite the misguided policies of the Bush-Obama administrations, all Americans should commit themselves to the basic freedoms that are explicit and implicit in the United States Constitution. In short, all Americans should reaffirm what it means to be a citizen of the United States.
Free enterprise: the right of the people to engage in voluntary exchange and those who commit fraud will subject to punishment, i.e., restitution to their victims.
Free speech: the right of the people to speak and write without government retribution.
Freedom of religion: the right of the people to worship their God without government interference.
Freedom of conscience: the right of the people not to have their incomes taxed by the government to pay for programs that violate their beliefs. This would protect all Americans no matter what their beliefs to enjoy the fruits of their labor and live their lives as they see fit.
Freedom to protect oneself and one’s property: The second amendment means what it says-the right to bear arms is a fundamental human right.
In other words, as a citizen there is no ‘right” to education, housing, healthcare, food, etc. There is no “right” to goods and services that have to be first produced by other individuals. Sure, the government has taken money from some Americans via taxation to provide other citizens with the necessities of life. And that’s why citizenship has come to mean, not freedom from government depredations, but the right to the fruits of our fellow citizens’ labors.
In short, we need another American “revolution” to restore the original meaning of being a United States citizen.