Glenn Beck: Constitution a 'niche'?


Learn more about the Restoring Honor Rally, 8/28 in Washington DC...

GLENN: This is from the Center For American Progress. The Center For American Progress has education cuts. We started the hour telling you about how the press is ‑‑ the press is just being, it's being gutted. I told you about the Internet today and free press and what's happening with free press and the Internet and how that is all about to change. We told you about the economic strife that is headed our way. I mean, look out, gang. You know, we showed you the mass graves here. There's something bad happening in the Middle East. There's just a lot of things that are going on, civil unrest that is beginning. Tonight on television I'm going to do two things. I want to show you the history of the Weimar Republic and specifically, specifically how it ties into what happened in Atlanta yesterday and with the Fed and what is to come. Learn from history, and you will see what is about to come our way.

The second half of the show is going after the Center of American progress and their new report on education. Now, we all know that education cuts have to be made but they don't need to be done at the federal level. They need to be done at the state level. Education needs to be controlled by the states, not the federal government. Abolish the Department of Education and let the states do it. And let the states negotiate their way out with these unions. Period. The Center For American Progress has another idea. They would like to start their cuts. They're not as broad as mine, of course. They would like to develop and cut the narrow low‑impact programs from the Department of Education. One of these low impact and narrow almost niche programs include academies for American history and civics. This is a program which provide workshops for teachers on American history. We should probably cut that. Then we the people needs to be cut. This is a program for the center for civic education to instruct students in the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights.

PAT: Yeah, what do they need to know that for? That's old. That's an old document.

GLENN: And then there's this one. Excellence in economic education. This is a grant designed to promote economic and financial literacy among K to 12 students. So let's see if we have this right. They want to cut programs in American education, in Constitution, and financial literacy. That sounds good. That sounds like a good, good plan.

PAT: That's almost as good as the plans in Arizona. They had that ‑‑ there was a big uproar. Not only did they do the immigration law but at the same time almost the legislature, they passed a law that banned education classes in Arizona to promote the overthrow of the United States government, right? Remember that? Or, or promote resentment toward a race or class of people because they had these ethnic studies in Arizona that were really focused on race‑baiting, on America's the enemy, all of those kinds of things and people went crazy: How can you cut out their ethics studies? What kind of racism is that? Well, the law apparently doesn't prohibit these classes as long as they are open to all students and don't promote ethnic resentment or solidarity. But Arizona's superintendent of public instruction, Tom Horne says the basic theme of the Mexican‑American studies program in Arizona is that Latino students were and continue to be victims of a racist American society driven by the interests of the middle and upper class whites. Among the goals listed for the Mexican‑American studies are... social justice, Latino critical race pedagogy, and they have pictures in the classroom showing the walls decorated with heroes like Fidel Castro and Che Guevara. Not a problem. Not a problem. So eliminating American history ‑‑

GLENN: I don't think there's a problem there.

PAT: ‑‑ eliminate Constitution and ‑‑

GLENN: Financial.

PAT: Financial, literacy.

GLENN: Right.

PAT: And then bring in Fidel Castro, Che Guevara and tell everybody that the whites are the problem and they are racist.

GLENN: Okay. So America, ask yourself these ‑‑ ask yourself this question. With as corrupt as our government is right now, and it is wildly corrupt ‑‑ and this isn't a Republican thing ‑‑ or, I mean, a Democrat thing. Trent Lott. Last thing we need is a bunch of Jim DeMints around there. We need to coopt them. I mean, they are about power. That's all they are about, power. And the power in Washington must be reduced, must. Not reduced. The power in Washington must be restored to its original power. How are you going to do that? How are you going to do that? How are you going to solve the financial crisis when you have Cass Sunstein and a bill that once Obama ‑‑ let's just say Obama comes in and he abolishes ‑‑ or I mean, a Republican Democrat ‑‑ I mean, a Republican congressman and it's all Republican utopia. Do you really think they are going to reverse the financial reform package? No. They will use it to their advantage. And it will continue to grow. So how are you going to, how are you going to change that? How are you going to change ethics in Washington? How are you going to change the banking problem and the ethics in banking and the ethics in business? How are you going to repair with cries of racism? And it happened with George Bush and it's happening with Barack Obama. How are you going to repair the illegal immigration problem? How are you going to repair the healthcare problem that we have? We all admit that our healthcare system is broken. It's broken. Now, how are you going to repair that? With the situation that we have with politics? How are you going to fight and keep your children when you are so busy fighting on all other fronts, when you have this nonsense being taught in schools? How are you going to fight the battle that is in your church now with social justice and collective salvation? Most people in churches aren't even aware of it now. They are not even aware of it. There are some preachers that don't even know.

I talk to some people that watch these trends. They said last election people that should know had no idea what was happening in their churches. How are you going to do that? It's the same question that people asked in the 1760s. How would you possibly separate from Britain? You can't. You can't. You can't defeat them. You can't win against them. They hold all the cards. You can't do it. The awakening that led people to understand that they have direct access to inspiration and the power of God, direct access. Not through anybody, not through any church. Direct access. And if the people restore themselves, this is 1760, 1740s they are saying this. If the American people would restore themselves to God, it will all work out. On 8/27, make sure you find out all the information at GlennBeck.com. 8/27, divine destiny at the Kennedy Center for the performing arts. It is a night of God. It is a night of how religion plays a role in the governance of this country. It's a separation of church and state. Religion and God plays a role in the individual life and then you don't need very much government because we self‑govern. We will take the words of the preachers of the 1740s to 1770 and show you what lines from sermons were taken out and used as foundation of this country and then we have members from, there's a rabbi that's going to be speaking, there is an evangelical that's going to be speaking, there's members of many faiths that are going to take those words from those sermons and translate them into today's world. There will be things that have never happened before at the Kennedy Center, I understand. We're going to talk about, turn your life over to God. That's it. Let Him work it out. Let Him work it out. And there's a difference. I want to make sure you understand this. It doesn't mean you do nothing. God helps those who help themselves, but you have to ‑‑ how did you put that just a little while ago, Pat?

PAT: Pray as if everything depends on God.

GLENN: Yes.

PAT: Act as if everything depends on you.

GLENN: Act as if everything depends on you. That's the way it is. Tickets are going to be extraordinarily limited. Right now if you go to the Kennedy Center, it will be first come first serve. There are 2500 seats but a lot of those are going to be taken up by people that I don't want to announce because it will just drive people crazy and there's no reason to do that. You’ll find out who they are and I'll tell you on 8/27. This is kind of an appetizer for 8/28. And then buckle up, gang, because at the feet of the Lincoln Memorial at 10:00 two weeks from Saturday, miracles happen. Miracles happen. And not on the stage but with the number of people, whether it's 200,000 or 20,000. Miracles will happen in the crowd around the reflecting pool at the Lincoln Memorial. Join me there. 8/28.

From the moment the 33-year-old Thomas Jefferson arrived at the Continental Congress in Philadelphia in 1776, he was on the radical side. That caused John Adams to like him immediately. Then the Congress stuck Jefferson and Adams together on the five-man committee to write a formal statement justifying a break with Great Britain, and their mutual admiration society began.

Jefferson thought Adams should write the Declaration. But Adams protested, saying, “It can't come from me because I'm obnoxious and disliked." Adams reasoned that Jefferson was not obnoxious or disliked, therefore he should write it. Plus, he flattered Jefferson, by telling him he was a great writer. It was a master class in passing the buck.

So, over the next 17 days, Jefferson holed up in his room, applying his lawyer skills to the ideas of the Enlightenment. He borrowed freely from existing documents like the Virginia Declaration of Rights. He later wrote that “he was not striving for originality of principle or sentiment." Instead, he hoped his words served as “an expression of the American mind."

It's safe to say he achieved his goal.

The five-man committee changed about 25 percent of Jefferson's first draft of the Declaration before submitting it to Congress. Then, Congress altered about one-fifth of that draft. But most of the final Declaration's words are Jefferson's, including the most famous passage — the Preamble — which Congress left intact. The result is nothing less than America's mission statement, the words that ultimately bind the nation together. And words that we desperately need to rediscover because of our boiling partisan rage.

The Declaration is brilliant in structure and purpose. It was designed for multiple audiences: the King of Great Britain, the colonists, and the world. And it was designed for multiple purposes: rallying the troops, gaining foreign allies, and announcing the creation of a new country.

The Declaration is structured in five sections: the Introduction, Preamble, the Body composed of two parts, and the Conclusion. It's basically the most genius breakup letter ever written.

In the Introduction, step 1 is the notificationI think we need to break up. And to be fair, I feel I owe you an explanation...

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another…

The Continental Congress felt they were entitled by “the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God" to “dissolve the political bands," but they needed to prove the legitimacy of their cause. They were defying the world's most powerful nation and needed to motivate foreign allies to join the effort. So, they set their struggle within the entire “Course of human events." They're saying, this is no petty political spat — this is a major event in world history.

Step 2 is declaring what you believe in, your standardsHere's what I'm looking for in a healthy relationship...

This is the most famous part of the Declaration; the part school children recite — the Preamble:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

That's as much as many Americans know of the Declaration. But the Preamble is the DNA of our nation, and it really needs to be taken as a whole:

That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

The Preamble takes us through a logical progression: All men are created equal; God gives all humans certain inherent rights that cannot be denied; these include the rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness; to protect those rights, we have governments set up; but when a government fails to protect our inherent rights, people have the right to change or replace it.

Government is only there to protect the rights of mankind. They don't have any power unless we give it to them. That was an extraordinarily radical concept then and we're drifting away from it now.

The Preamble is the justification for revolution. But note how they don't mention Great Britain yet. And again, note how they frame it within a universal context. These are fundamental principles, not just squabbling between neighbors. These are the principles that make the Declaration just as relevant today. It's not just a dusty parchment that applied in 1776.

Step 3 is laying out your caseHere's why things didn't work out between us. It's not me, it's you...

This is Part 1 of the Body of the Declaration. It's the section where Jefferson gets to flex his lawyer muscles by listing 27 grievances against the British crown. This is the specific proof of their right to rebellion:

He has obstructed the administration of justice...

For imposing taxes on us without our consent...

For suspending our own legislatures...

For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us...

Again, Congress presented these “causes which impel them to separation" in universal terms to appeal to an international audience. It's like they were saying, by joining our fight you'll be joining mankind's overall fight against tyranny.

Step 4 is demonstrating the actions you took I really tried to make this relationship work, and here's how...

This is Part 2 of the Body. It explains how the colonists attempted to plead their case directly to the British people, only to have the door slammed in their face:

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury...

They too have been deaf to the voice of justice... We must, therefore... hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

This basically wrapped up America's argument for independence — we haven't been treated justly, we tried to talk to you about it, but since you refuse to listen and things are only getting worse, we're done here.

Step 5 is stating your intent — So, I think it's best if we go our separate ways. And my decision is final...

This is the powerful Conclusion. If people know any part of the Declaration besides the Preamble, this is it:

...that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved...

They left no room for doubt. The relationship was over, and America was going to reboot, on its own, with all the rights of an independent nation.

And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

The message was clear — this was no pitchfork mob. These were serious men who had carefully thought through the issues before taking action. They were putting everything on the line for this cause.

The Declaration of Independence is a landmark in the history of democracy because it was the first formal statement of a people announcing their right to choose their own government. That seems so obvious to us now, but in 1776 it was radical and unprecedented.

In 1825, Jefferson wrote that the purpose of the Declaration was “not to find out new principles, or new arguments, never before thought of… but to place before mankind the common sense of the subject, in terms so plain and firm… to justify ourselves in the independent stand we are compelled to take."

You're not going to do better than the Declaration of Independence. Sure, it worked as a means of breaking away from Great Britain, but its genius is that its principles of equality, inherent rights, and self-government work for all time — as long as we actually know and pursue those principles.

On June 7, 1776, the Second Continental Congress met in Philadelphia at the Pennsylvania State House, better known today as Independence Hall. Virginia delegate Richard Henry Lee introduced a motion calling for the colonies' independence. The “Lee Resolution" was short and sweet:

Resolved, That these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States, that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain is, and ought to be, totally dissolved.

Intense debate followed, and the Congress voted 7 to 5 (with New York abstaining) to postpone a vote on Lee's Resolution. They called a recess for three weeks. In the meantime, the delegates felt they needed to explain what they were doing in writing. So, before the recess, they appointed a five-man committee to come up with a formal statement justifying a break with Great Britain. They appointed two men from New England — Roger Sherman and John Adams; two from the middle colonies — Robert Livingston and Benjamin Franklin; and one Southerner — Thomas Jefferson. The responsibility for writing what would become the Declaration of Independence fell to Jefferson.

In the rotunda of the National Archives building in Washington, D.C., there are three original documents on permanent display: the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and the Declaration of Independence. These are the three pillars of the United States, yet America barely seems to know them anymore. We need to get reacquainted — quickly.

In a letter to his friend John Adams in 1816, Jefferson wrote: “I like the dreams of the future, better than the history of the past."

America used to be a forward-looking nation of dreamers. We still are in spots, but the national attitude that we hear broadcast loudest across media is not looking toward the future with optimism and hope. In late 2017, a national poll found 59% of Americans think we are currently at the “lowest point in our nation's history that they can remember."

America spends far too much time looking to the past for blame and excuse. And let's be honest, even the Right is often more concerned with “owning the left" than helping point anyone toward the practical principles of the Declaration of Independence. America has clearly lost touch with who we are as a nation. We have a national identity crisis.

The Declaration of Independence is America's thesis statement, and without it America doesn't exist.

It is urgent that we get reacquainted with the Declaration of Independence because postmodernism would have us believe that we've evolved beyond the America of our founding documents, and thus they're irrelevant to the present and the future. But the Declaration of Independence is America's thesis statement, and without it America doesn't exist.

Today, much of the nation is so addicted to partisan indignation that "day-to-day" indignation isn't enough to feed the addiction. So, we're reaching into America's past to help us get our fix. In 2016, Democrats in the Louisiana state legislature tabled a bill that would have required fourth through sixth graders to recite the opening lines of the Declaration. They didn't table it because they thought it would be too difficult or too patriotic. They tabled it because the requirement would include the phrase “all men are created equal" and the progressives in the Louisiana legislature didn't want the children to have to recite a lie. Representative Barbara Norton said, “One thing that I do know is, all men are not created equal. When I think back in 1776, July the fourth, African Americans were slaves. And for you to bring a bill to request that our children will recite the Declaration, I think it's a little bit unfair to us. To ask our children to recite something that's not the truth. And for you to ask those children to repeat the Declaration stating that all men's are free. I think that's unfair."

Remarkable — an elected representative saying it wouldn't be fair for students to have to recite the Declaration because “all men are not created equal." Another Louisiana Democrat explained that the government born out of the Declaration “was used against races of people." I guess they missed that part in school where they might have learned that the same government later made slavery illegal and amended the Constitution to guarantee all men equal protection under the law. The 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments were an admission of guilt by the nation regarding slavery, and an effort to right the wrongs.

Yet, the progressive logic goes something like this: many of the men who signed the Declaration of Independence, including Thomas Jefferson who wrote it, owned slaves; slavery is evil; therefore, the Declaration of Independence is not valid because it was created by evil slave owners.

It's a sad reality that the left has a very hard time appreciating the universal merits of the Declaration of Independence because they're so hung up on the long-dead issue of slavery. And just to be clear — because people love to take things out of context — of course slavery was horrible. Yes, it is a total stain on our history. But defending the Declaration of Independence is not an effort to excuse any aspect of slavery.

Okay then, people might say, how could the Founders approve the phrase “All men are created equal," when many of them owned slaves? How did they miss that?

They didn't miss it. In fact, Thomas Jefferson included an anti-slavery passage in his first draft of the Declaration. The paragraph blasted King George for condoning slavery and preventing the American Colonies from passing legislation to ban slavery:

He has waged cruel war against human nature itself, violating its most sacred rights to life and liberty in the persons of a distant people who never offended him, captivating and carrying them into slavery in another hemisphere... Determined to keep open a market where men should be bought and sold, he has prostituted his negative for suppressing every legislative attempt to prohibit or to restrain this execrable commerce.

We don't say “execrable" that much anymore. It means, utterly detestable, abominable, abhorrent — basically very bad.

Jefferson was upset when Georgia and North Carolina threw up the biggest resistance to that paragraph. Ultimately, those two states twisted Congress' arm to delete the paragraph.

Still, how could a man calling the slave trade “execrable" be a slaveowner himself? No doubt about it, Jefferson was a flawed human being. He even had slaves from his estate in Virginia attending him while he was in Philadelphia, in the very apartment where he was writing the Declaration.

Many of the Southern Founders deeply believed in the principles of the Declaration yet couldn't bring themselves to upend the basis of their livelihood. By 1806, Virginia law made it more difficult for slave owners to free their slaves, especially if the owner had significant debts as Jefferson did.

At the same time, the Founders were not idiots. They understood the ramifications of signing on to the principles described so eloquently in the Declaration. They understood that logically, slavery would eventually have to be abolished in America because it was unjust, and the words they were committing to paper said as much. Remember, John Adams was on the committee of five that worked on the Declaration and he later said that the Revolution would never be complete until the slaves were free.

Also, the same generation that signed the Declaration started the process of abolition by banning the importation of slaves in 1807. Jefferson was President at the time and he urged Congress to pass the law.

America has an obvious road map that, as a nation, we're not consulting often enough.

The Declaration took a major step toward crippling the institution of slavery. It made the argument for the first time about the fundamental rights of all humans which completely undermined slavery. Planting the seeds to end slavery is not nearly commendable enough for leftist critics, but you can't discount the fact that the seeds were planted. It's like they started an expiration clock for slavery by approving the Declaration. Everything that happened almost a century later to end slavery, and then a century after that with the Civil Rights movement, flowed from the principles voiced in the Declaration.

Ironically for a movement that calls itself progressive, it is obsessed with retrying and judging the past over and over. Progressives consider this a better use of time than actually putting past abuses in the rearview and striving not to be defined by ancestral failures.

It can be very constructive to look to the past, but not when it's used to flog each other in the present. Examining history is useful in providing a road map for the future. And America has an obvious road map that, as a nation, we're not consulting often enough. But it's right there, the original, under glass. The ink is fading, but the words won't die — as long as we continue to discuss them.

'Good Morning Texas' gives exclusive preview of Mercury One museum

Screen shot from Good Morning Texas

Mercury One is holding a special exhibition over the 4th of July weekend, using hundreds of artifacts, documents and augmented reality experiences to showcase the history of slavery — including slavery today — and a path forward. Good Morning Texas reporter Paige McCoy Smith went through the exhibit for an exclusive preview with Mercury One's chief operating officer Michael Little on Tuesday.

Watch the video below to see the full preview.

Click here to purchase tickets to the museum (running from July 4 - 7).

Over the weekend, journalist Andy Ngo and several other apparent right-leaning people were brutally beaten by masked-gangs of Antifa protesters in Portland, Oregon. Short for "antifascist," Antifa claims to be fighting for social justice and tolerance — by forcibly and violently silencing anyone with opposing opinions. Ngo, who was kicked, punched, and sprayed with an unknown substance, is currently still in the hospital with a "brain bleed" as a result of the savage attack. Watch the video to get the details from Glenn.