HAS POWER BEEN SHARED, OR USURPED?
by Dr. Tom E. Davis, Col., USA (Ret.), ©2016
Our Founding Fathers consisted of 55 men ranging in age from 26-year-old Jonathan Dayton to the old man of the convention, Benjamin Franklin at age 81, with George Washington in between at age 55. All were well-educated, all were Christians, and all were dedicated and committed to producing a document of governance best suited to the admixture of races, creeds and temperaments represented within the Thirteen Colonies.
About five weeks into the convention, the 55 delegates were seemingly at an impasse and on the verge of dissolution. The aged and infirm Dr. Franklin made an impassioned plea to the delegates under the approving eye of the Convention’s President, General George Washington.
“We have arrived, Mr. President . . . at a very momentous and interesting crisis in our deliberations. Hitherto our views have been as harmonious, and our progress as great as could reasonably have been expected. But now an unlooked for and formidable obstacle is thrown in our way, which threatens to arrest our course, and, if not skillfully removed, to render all our fond hopes of a constitution abortive.
“It is, however, to be feared that the members of this Convention are not in a temper, at this moment, to approach the subject in which we differ, in this spirit. I would, therefore, propose, Mr. President, that, without proceeding further in this business at this time, the Convention shall adjourn for three days, in order to let the present ferment pass off, and to afford time for a more full, free, and dispassionate investigation of the subject; and I would earnestly recommend to the members of this Convention, that they spend the time of this recess, not in associating with their own party, and devising new arguments to fortify themselves in their old opinions, but that they mix with members of opposite sentiments, lend a patient ear to their reasonings, and candidly allow them all the weight to which they may be entitled; and when we assemble again, I hope it will be with a determination to form a constitution, if not such an one as we can individually, and in all respects, approve, yet the best, which, under existing circumstances, can be obtained.
(Here the countenance of Washington brightened, and a cheering ray seemed to break in upon the gloom which had recently covered our political horizon.) The doctor continued:
“Before I sit down, Mr. President, I will suggest another matter; and I am really surprised that it has not been proposed by some other member at an earlier period of our deliberations. I will suggest, Mr. President, that propriety of nominating and appointing, before we separate, a chaplain to this Convention, whose duty it shall be uniformly to assemble with us, and introduce the business of each day by and address to the Creator of the universe, and the Governor of all nations, beseeching Him to preside in our council, enlighten our minds with a portion of heavenly wisdom, influence our hearts with a love of truth and justice, and crown our labors with complete and abundant success!
The doctor sat down, and never did I [General Dayton] behold a countenance at once so dignified and delighted as was that of Washington, at the close of the address! Nor were the members of the Convention, generally less affected. The words of the venerable Franklin fell upon our ears with a weight and authority, even greater than we may suppose an oracle to have had in a Roman Senate! A silent admiration superseded, for a moment, the expression of that assent and approbation which was strongly marked on almost every countenance.
According to Steele, Dayton then recalled Alexander Hamilton’s protest and sarcastic refusal to accept “foreign aid.” And then he continued:
Washington fixed his eye upon the speaker [Hamilton], with a mixture of surprise and indignation, while he uttered this impertinent and impious speech, and then looked around to ascertain in what manner it affected others. They did not leave him a moment to doubt; no one deigned to reply, or take the smallest notice of the speaker, but the motion for appointing a chaplain was instantly seconded and carried; whether under the silent disapprobation of Mr. H___,( Hamilton) or his solitary negative, I do not recollect. The motion for an adjournment was then put and carried unanimously, and the Convention adjourned accordingly.
The three days of recess were spent in the manner advised by Doctor Franklin; the opposite parties mixed with each other, and a free and frank interchange of sentiments took place. On the fourth day we assembled again, and if great additional light had not been thrown on the subject, every unfriendly feeling had been expelled; and a spirit of conciliation had been cultivated, which promised, at least, a calm and dispassionate reconsideration of the subject [state’s representation].
William Steele closed the letter confident he had “faithfully stated the facts” motivated by a desire to “perpetuate the facts.” From this source, and others, one might easily draw the conclusion that Franklin’s efforts brought a harmonious reconciliation to the Convention.”
Thus the little matter of prayer became a standard practice even unto this very day within the hallowed halls of American government, and Judeo-Christian statuary adorns our government buildings. Although “The First Amendment to the United States Constitution prohibits the making of any law respecting an establishment of religion” or “impeding the free exercise of religion,” the “free exercise” of religion was “impeded’ by no less than the U.S. Supreme Court when it ruled in 1963 in Abington School District v. Schempp that official Bible-reading in American public schools is unconstitutional. If this does NOT constitute impeding the free exercise of religion, this writer obviously fails to understand the English language. This absurd ruling came just one year after the Supreme Court prohibited school-sponsored prayer in schools in Engel v. Vitale.
The Founding Fathers had credible doubts and were not about to create an all-powerful central government such as a parliamentary system that had treated them so badly when they were willing and loyal British subjects. Instead they settled upon a Confederation of States sharing power with a strong central tripartite government. Of the three divisions, the chamber representing the People of the now-Thirteen United States of America was the lower or People’s House of Representatives. The Constitution allocated to them ALL the power to initiate the making of laws.
Their co-equal chamber was the Senate, which was intended to provide direct input from the individual State Governments. That particular feature was snatched away by the questionable tactics of this nation’s first open socialist, Democrat Woodrow Wilson. In some fashion Wilson induced Congress to pass legislation to Amend the Constitution to remove the state legislatures’ power to appoint their two Senators and to have them popularly elected in the party politics mode, thus providing a power shift from the states to the chief executive himself.
We the People cannot trust the Congress to do that which is best for the nation; they are most interested in doing that which best suits their interests. In order to get back on an even keel, we have one tool remaining, an Article V Convention of States. Such a Convention requires application from two-thirds, or 34, of the States. By Congress’s own count, 49 of the 50 states have ALREADY made the necessary application; yet the Congress refuses to act. To clear up any confusion, following is a listing of a few basic truths relative to our nation.
- The United States is, unquestionably, a nation which lives by a Judeo-Christin ethic.
- Atheism is NOT a religion; it is at best a misbelief, childish behavior.
- Proof of a higher power is present in our daily lives; the firmament above, the Earth and Oceans below and a panoply of God’s handiwork all around us always.
- Our appointed judges violate the law by making law, a function of the Congress. They are frequently criminally incorrect as in Roe v Wade and in Dred Scott and refuse to correct or to apologize.
- Prayer is our direct connection to our Creator and guide.
- In the ensuing years since our founding we have abandoned our reliance upon and faith in God. We have allowed Him to be cast aside in favor of sin and disobedience.
- Our federal government officials, as well as some functionaries in state and local governments, routinely violate their oath of office.
- The Congress and the Judiciary allow a TRAITOR to continue an illegal tenure and his sycophants to continue to draw a salary.