Hate Crimes, Are They Constitutional: It is Foundations of Freedom Thursday, a special day of the week where we get to answer questions from you, the listeners! Tune in today as we answer your questions such as, what role should the government have in international trade? Are hate crimes constitutional? What steps can we do to remove unconstitutional laws? And so much more, right here on WallBuilders Live!

Air Date: 12/13/2018

On-air Personalities: David Barton, Rick Green, and Tim Barton


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Transcription note:  As a courtesy for our listeners’ enjoyment, we are providing a transcription of this podcast. Transcription will be released shortly. However, as this is transcribed from a live talk show, words and sentence structure were not altered to fit grammatical, written norms in order to preserve the integrity of the actual dialogue between the speakers. Additionally, names may be misspelled or we might use an asterisk to indicate a missing word because of the difficulty in understanding the speaker at times. We apologize in advance.

Faith And The Culture

Intro:

Calvin Coolidge said, “€œThe more I study the Constitution, the more I realize that no other document devised by the hand of man has brought so much progress and happiness to humanity. To live under the American Constitution is the greatest political privilege that was ever accorded to the human race.”€

 

Rick:

Welcome to the intersection of faith and the culture.  This is WallBuilders Live! where we”€™re talking about today”€™s hottest topics on policy, faith, and the culture, always from a Biblical, historical, and Constitutional perspective, especially on the constitutional side today. Foundations of Freedom Thursday is a chance for us to dive into those founding principles.

We love it when you pick the topics; so, please send in your questions to us at [email protected]. That”€™s [email protected]. It might be a question about the Constitution itself and the original intent of the Founding Fathers; it might be about the Founding Fathers; or, you could have a question about a policy of today and had a look at that from a Biblical, historical, and constitutional perspective.

Send those questions in. We’d love to hear from you, and we’re going to get to as many of them as we possibly can today. We’re here with David Barton; he’s America’s premier historian and our founder here at WallBuilders. Tim Burton is with us, a national speaker and pastor and president of WallBuilders. My name is Rick Green; I’m a former Texas legislator.

End of Year Giving

The two websites you can find out more about us at are WallBuildersLive.com and WallBuilders.com. At either of those websites, we would really appreciate it if you consider us for an end of year gift. It helps us to continue the good work and actually spread the program get, it in front of more people.

The more people we get this education in front of, the more people we can inspire to be a part of the solution and actually live out their freedom, be good citizens, apply Biblical principles to our government at the local, county, state, and federal level; thus, the more likely we save our Constitutional Republic. All of that is made possible by you, by our listeners.

You’re the ones that donate and make it possible for us to get this good word out there. [Many thanks] for doing that.  If you haven’t done that yet and you enjoy our program, we would encourage you to go to WallBuildersLive.com today and make that donation.

David, Tim, we’ve got a lot of questions we’re going to try to get to today. Our first one is come in from Adam in Virginia.

International Trade

He said, “€œHey, David, what role should the federal government have in international trade? Why are trade deals made between governments and not private entities? What constitutional role does the president have in going to China or any other country and brokering trade deals? Shouldn’t private entities just buy what they want from private entities in other countries without the governments getting involved?

“€œYou guys are awesome. Thanks!”€ [That was from] Adam in Virginia. Adam, thanks for the question. David, Tim, I’ll toss it to you.

David:

Well, the president should not be going to other countries to broker deals. We should have free trade if all of those other countries also had a free market economic system. But, when you have countries that don’t have that, and there are countries where the economy is run by the government, as it is with China and with so many socialist nations, then what the president is doing is actually acting on behalf of private business owners to help them out and try to negotiate something to keep other countries from penalizing them.

The Founding Fathers used Tariffs

Constitutionally you wouldn’t have the president doing anything, but I point back to the Founding Fathers. The Founding Fathers were [very] big into using tariffs to help get other countries to do free trade. So, the purpose of a tariff is–other countries have unfair trade practices.

They don’t let the market compete. They want to run the market; or, they own the market in their country. The purpose of tariffs is to really put trade on a competitive basis.

What the president is doing by making those kind of trade agreements, he’s actually promoting the free-market economic system in countries that actually don’t have or don’t use it or don’t rely on it or they want to control it. That’s why China is a big deal; because, China has a huge economy, but it’s all government controlled. They’re not going to do–they’re going to do everything they can to harm business and America and give themselves vast deals.

They use so much slave labor with what they’re doing and producing their own products they send to America, that we can’t compete. It puts our guys out of business and becomes a non-competitive system. That’s why the president does what he does with NAFTA and with these other things. It’s all to help American free-market economics, which is a good deal.

Rick:

All right, we’re going take a quick break then come back and get our next question. Stay with us folks; you’re listening to WallBuilders Live!

 

President Thomas Jefferson said, “€œI know no safe depository of the ultimate powers of the society, but the people themselves. And if we think them not enlightened enough to exercise their control with a wholesome discretion the remedy is not to take it from them, but to inform their discretion by education. This is the true corrective of abuses of constitutional power.”€

Moment From American History

This is Tim Barton from WallBuilders with another moment in American history. America is a special and unique nation. The average length for a constitution in other countries is only 17 years. But we’ve had ours for over two centuries. Our 4 percent of the world’s population produces 24 percent of the world’s gross domestic product and every year we produce more inventions and technology than the other 96 percent of the world combined.

In 1831 Alexis de Tocqueville of France came to America, traveled the country, and in his famous book, “€œDemocracy in America” reported,  “€œThe position of the Americans is therefore quite exceptional. It may be believed that no Democratic people will ever be placed in a similar one.”€

This is the origin of the phrase “€œAmerican exceptionalism”€ and affirms that America is unique because of the distinctive ideas on which we’ve been based. Including in inalienable rights, individuals, and limited government, and the importance of religion, and morality. For more information about American exceptionalism go to WallBuilders.com.

 

Abraham Lincoln said, “€œWe the people are the rightful masters of both Congress and the courts. Not to overthrow the Constitution, but to overthrow the men who pervert the Constitution.”€

Hate Crimes

Rick:

We’re back on WallBuilders Live! Thanks for staying with us on this Foundations of Freedom Thursday, and be sure and send in your questions if you’d like them covered on the program. You can send on the [email protected]

Next question comes from Joe. He said, “€œAre hate crimes constitutional? I would say [not], since they go after a person’s thoughts or words instead of actions; however, many states have passed them, and my state of Indiana is considering one. Am I wrong; and, iif not, what could I do if it passes?”€

Guys, hate crimes, is that a constitutional law for government to be passing?

Tim:

Rick, I appreciate you reframing it; because, “€œAre hate crimes constitutional?”€ Well, actually no crimes are constitutional; so, I would say that”€™s a no answer.

Rick:

That’s exactly right. Crime are not constitutional.

Tim:

No, those are not constitutional; but, Rick, it’s one of those things that it’s kind of a funny–the presupposition is that it’s not just a crime, it actually has to be filed in a different category if it’s a hate crime, right? If I murdered somebody, that’s not a bad enough crime. But, if you were like hateful murdering people, it”€™s like, “€œWait a second; I really don’t like white guys with red hair,”€ and I’ve said it and then I murdered one, now it’s a hate crime.

Now it’s not just that I murdered somebody, it’s that I hatefully murdered somebody.  Well, wait a second; if it’s a crime–right? It wasn’t like it was a “€œlove crime.”€ If I’m committing a crime, it’s not because I love you; aren’t all crimes on some level a hate crime?

Rick:

Absolutely.

The Removal of Absolutes

Tim:

It’s this funny presupposition that we have to try to put borders and boundaries on things. I’ll go back and point out that the reason we are struggling to even identify what is right and wrong and crime is because we’ve removed a moral standard where the Bible used to be very, very plain and says, “€œLove your neighbor as yourself; do unto others what you would have them do unto you. Thou shalt not murder.”€ Right?

This was a very plain standard. Anytime you violated that standard, you did the wrong thing.  It didn’t even matter why necessarily you violated it if you violated it.

Now we don’t just care about why you violated it, or we don’t just care about the fact you violated; but, we care more about why you violated it.

Certainly, this is something that is not constitutional; but, it’s more foolish than it is even legal to presume that I can understand the intent of your mind and thoughts instead of just judging you on behavior. That’s not that’s not very Biblical; it’s not very wise, and certainly is not constitutional.

This is even–if for example, one of the things when Martin Luther King Jr. in giving his famous “€œI Have A Dream”€ speech said, “€œI have a dream where my my kids will be judged based on the content of their character and not the color of their skin.”€ Judging based on the content of character is behavior: “€œI’m going to judge your behavior, and not just the intention and motives of your behavior that maybe I want to psychologically assess and apply.”€

Look; I am totally in favor of having strict penalties for violating laws. If someone’s a criminal–totally; but, to make it a hate crime, now we’ve come to the position where we have to define what “€œhate”€ is. So now, if you”€™re a Christian business owner and you will not allow a gender-born male to go into the female’s restroom, that’s a hate crime, because you’re discriminating against him.

No. Oh my gosh; we’re being ridiculous now. This is where hate crimes go; because, we’re redefining boundaries and borders and standards, instead of saying, “€œAcross the board, Biblical standard rights and wrongs,”€ what we used to do, hate crimes takes it to a very dangerous and scary place, which is certainly not what the Constitution was about.

It”€™s a Product of Secular, Progressive Thinking

David:

What you get out of this is a product of secular and progressive thinking. You can go all the way back to Genesis 8-10 to define [where] this thinking first manifested; but, what it does is says that some groups have more value than other groups: “€œWe’re going to decide, we ourselves will decide, which groups have more value; and, we will create a greater penalty if you do something against that group than any other normal group.”€

The reason that Lady Justice used to be blindfolded was everybody get equal treatment under the law; but, now she’s got to raise that blindfold and say, “€œNow wait a minute. Are you African-American? Are you Latino or Jewish or Muslim? If so, then you’ve got more value than say, a male who happens to be an Anglo or whatever.”€

No longer do we believe that all people are equal. We believe that some have superior standing to others; so, as Tim pointed out, if it’s murder, and you get that cap, you get the death penalty for murder, how much more can you add on a hate crime?

I mean, if you’re going to be killed for killing someone–so, when you look at hate crimes from the basis of “€œwe’re making groups,”€ that’s progressive thinking, and they believe that your identity and your worth comes from the group with which you identify. They don’t just treat all Americans the same.

The First Federal Hate Crime

Right now it’s a hate crime to go after a Jew or go after Muslim, but not to go after a Christian; it’s okay there. Louie Gohmert, who’s one of our good friends sitting on the Judiciary Committee–the first federal hate crime laws came through under Nancy Pelosi, back when Nancy Pelosi was able to get the House as she has now got it again, here little more than 10 years later; she’s got it again.

What they did was they attached a hate-crime bill. It was actually attached to military spending; because, they knew they couldn’t get it through on a stand alone vote. As that provision went through Judiciary Committee, Louie Gohmert was there and said, “€œWait; I’ve got groups I want to protect;”€ because, the hate-crime bill said, “€œWe’re going to protect homosexuals and lesbians. If you commit a crime against a homosexual or a lesbian, it’s more serious and a higher penalty than if you do it against anyone who is straight and of male or female gender.”€

What Louie did is say, “€œI want to amend that and say that if you do a crime against a veteran or you do a crime against a senior, that that’s a hate crime as well.”€ They said, “€œ[A big] no. Those aren”€™t groups we’re trying to protect; there’s other groups.”€

Literally they said, “€œIf you’re a veteran or a senior, you’re not as important to us as if you’re homosexual and lesbian.”€

The Problem with Hate Crimes

That’s the problem with hate crimes is you’re not equal under the law. You don’t have equal standing under the law. It rejects God’s view that all men are created equal that”€™s expressed in the Declaration of Independence and the Bible.

That’s the real problem with hate-crime laws: you cannot apply the Constitution the same to every person. You have to raise the blindfold to see what they look like and what their characteristics are so you how to identify them and how much they’re worth.

Rick:

Such a good description of really taking the principles Biblical principles and applying them to an issue of today and making it clear why a bad policy produces bad results, those unintended consequences. Thanks guys [for those] very good answers.

We”€™ve got more questions coming up next; so, stay with us. We’re answering your questions, and you can send them into [email protected] We’ll be right back. On WallBuilders Live!

Be At All Times Armed

Thomas Jefferson said, “€œThe constitutions of most of our states, and of the United States, assert that all power is inherent in the people that they may exercise it by themselves that it is their right and duty to be at all times armed. That they are entitled to freedom of person, freedom of religion, freedom of property, and freedom of press.”€

 

This Precarious Moment Book

David:

This is David Barton. I want to let about a brand new book we have called This Precarious Moment, Six Urgent Steps That Will Save You, Your family, and Our Country. Jim Garlow and I have co-authored this book and we take six issues that are hot in the culture right now.

Issues that we’re dealing with, issues such as immigration, race relations, our relationship with Israel, the rising generation Millennials, and the absence of the church in the culture wars, and where American heritage is, our godly heritage. We look at all six of those issues right now that are under attack and we give you both Biblical and historical perspective on those issues that provide solutions on what each of us can do right now to make a difference.

These are all problems that are solvable if we’ll get involved. So you can grab the book This Precarious Moment and find out what you can do to make a difference. This Precarious Moment is available at WallBuilders.com.

 

Calvin Coolidge said, “€œThe more I study the Constitution, the more I realize that no other document devised by the hand of man has brought so much progress and happiness to humanity. To live under the American Constitution is the greatest political privilege that was ever accorded to the human race.”€

Rick:

Welcome back to WallBuilders Live on this Foundations of Freedom Thursday. We”€™re taking your questions here at WallBuilders Live; so, send them into [email protected] We’ll get to them on our Foundations of Freedom Thursday programs.

Unconstitutional Government Agencies

This next one is from Sebastian who says, “€œDear Rick, Tim, and David; I was listening recently to a WallBuilders podcast done a couple of months ago–“€ by the way, listeners, you can do that by going to archives at WallBuildersLive.com. You can go back and catch any programs that you miss.

Anyway, he says, “€œYou were discussing presidential-cabinet-level positions. I have a question regarding the legitimacy of laws and policies passed by agencies that are unconstitutional. Are the laws and policies passed by unconstitutional–in other words, not-in-the-Constitution–government agencies legitimate? If not, what steps can be taken to remove the policies and eventually the agencies?

“€œI would greatly appreciate it if found time to answer my questions. Thanks for your time and all the education you provide.”€ Very good question.

Guys, we’ve talked often about how we”€™ve got all these government agencies and programs that aren’t listed in Article 1 Section 8. They’re not specifically enumerated powers that the people ever gave to the federal government; yet, the federal government has been using those powers in expanding their own powers for decades and decades. That created a lot of these government agencies he’s talking about that then turn around and make laws through regulations and administrative law over in these in these agencies that affect us.

It”€™s a Very Real Battle

The question is: If the agency itself is unconstitutional, how do we deal with the the laws and regulations that those unconstitutional agencies create?

David:

Let me take it a step beyond that. Let’s say–

Tim:

By the way, it’s a great question.

David:

It is a great question.

Tim:

It”€™s a great thought, because it is a very real battle.

David;

It is.

Tim:

It is struggle because you’re seeing agencies who are supposed to have no constitutional power and authority that are doing things imposing on our life, penalizing Americans, making life more difficult, stripping away freedom; and, it seems like there’s nothing we can do about it. It really is a very well-thought-out and good question.

The Five Cabinet-Level Positions of the Founding Fathers

David:

It is a great question, and to answer that, let me first make another kind–let me just take it a step further. Let’s go back to those five cabinet-level positions that the Founding Fathers had in 1789.

They believed that those five cabinet-levels were under the jurisdiction of federal-authority things that can be done: the Department of War, The Department of Treasury, Department of State, etc.  Let’s take those five, and let’s look at those five and look at how many agencies are created under any of those five.

Can the regulations passed by the agency that is a constitutional position, can those regulations themselves be constitutional if they’re not passed by the agency itself? In other words, by the by the actual cabinet-level department?

I’m going to choose–having said that, I’m going to argue that yes, you can have a cabinet-level department that is constitutionally authorized, that its regulations are not constitutionally authorized, because you have unelected people making policy at the level of federal law. Instead of just making internal policy, they apply penalties to it; they apply even jail time to their regulations.

Nobody in the House or Senate voted on it; the President didn’t sign any law making a national policy. Part of this just goes to regulatory law itself. You have a real problem right now in that what happens in Congress even with constitutionally-authorized departments, they often allow those departments to delegate their authority down to those that are not elected.

“€œIn Loco Parentis”€

If I can make another analogy, we have public schools, and they were based on the premise of “€œin loco parentis,”€ which means “€œin place of parents.”€ In other words, parents are the ones responsible for educating their own children, period, end of story.

That’s Biblical. That was the way it had been done in Western civilization and culture. Parents raised their kids.

Now, if you decide you want to put your kids in the hands of a school, then what you did was you put it in the hands of the school, in loco parentis. The schools in place of the parents, and you’re supposed to be raising them with the values and beliefs I have.

Now we do that, and they raise them with opposite values to what we have. You can delegate your authority, but that doesn’t mean it’s smart to do so.

A lot of cabinet-level departments that are constitutional delegate authority to lower sub agencies. That doesn’t mean smart to do so or even right to do so. Then the sub agencies come out with hostile policies, as we’ve seen the State Department, where the agencies of the State Department all of a sudden say, “€œYou cannot have State-Department dollars unless you promote abortion [and] homosexuality in your constitution in your nation.

Wait a minute. Where did that come from? That’s not constitutional.

The REINS Act

This really goes back to the question of When is a regulation constitutional or not, and can an agency create a nationally-binding law that has the force of law by issuing fines, penalties, or jail time? The answer is no, you can’t.

But, at this point, the courts are not going to stop that. Now they’re starting to do that, and there’s what’s called the REINS Act, which is trying to work its way through Congress. It worked its way through the House, got passed in the House; the Senate did not pick it up.

It says: “€œAny regulation that that comes through one of those agencies that has an impact of 100 million or more,”€ which is a small amount in federal dollars; that’s big to us. “€œIt has to be voted on by the Congress, not by the agency.”€

If we ever get that REINS Act passed, that would be a huge step toward ending regulatory tyranny that goes across the nation. But then, you take that and add it to cabinet-level departments that were not authorized by the Constitution and deal with areas not in those 15 enumerated powers. This is where you get so much of the country not being under elected representatives; it comes from bureaucrats and regulatory law.

It’s a great question. Even if we just reduced it to the five cabinet-level departments the Founding Fathers authorize, we still have the same, huge problems with those five as well.

The Deep State

Rick:

That’s part of that whole–we keep hearing that phrase “€œdeep state,”€ right? I mean, that”€™s those those huge bureaucracies that have been created over the years and just become  these leviathans that are very difficult to defeat. Trump’s probably been more successful, I would argue, than even Reagan was, or maybe any president in our lifetime, in starting to dig into those agencies and cut back on these things.

It’s a very big problem that”€™s not gonna be solved overnight. It can be solved, but it’s going to take multiple administrations and multiple good Congresses to tear that apart and get back to actual constitutional governance, things we’ve actually authorized them to do.

Trump and Repealing Regulations

David:

By the way, Rick, I’ll point out that President Trump has told his agencies that you cannot implement a new regulation without repealing two. Currently, right now, the rate  is every one that’s being implemented, 22 have been repealed.

Rick:

Wow.

David:

That is good news. that most of the public has not heard before. It’s part of helping get that deep state gone; and of course, that’s why they’re so ticked with him and want to go after him. He’s trying to dismantle a lot of that unelected government that should not be there.

Rick:

Quick break, guys. We’ll come back and get one more question today. Stay with us; you’re listening to WallBuilders Live!

Questions of Power

Thomas Jefferson said, “€œIn questions of power, then, let no more be heard of confidence in man, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution.”€

Bring A Speaker To Your Area

Tim:

Hey, this is Tim Barton with WallBuilders.  And as you’ve had the opportunity to listen to WallBuilders Live, you’ve probably heard a wealth of information about our nation, about our spiritual heritage, about the religious liberties, and about all the things that make America exceptional.

And you might be thinking, “€œAs incredible as this information is, I wish there was a way that I could get one of the WallBuilders guys to come to my area and share with my group.”€

Whether it be a church, whether it be a Christian school, or public school, or some political event, or activity, if you’re interested in having a WallBuilders speaker come to your area, you can get on our website at www.WallBuilders.com and there’s a tab for scheduling. If you”€™ll click on that tab, you’ll notice there’s a list of information from speakers bio’s, to events that are already going on. And there’s a section where you can request an event, to bring this information about who we are, where we came from, our religious liberties, and freedoms. Go to the WallBuilders website and Bring a speaker to your area.

Liberties and Freedom Are Worth Defending

Samuel Adams said, “€œThe liberties of our Country and the freedom of our civil Constitution are worth defending against hazards. And it is our duty to defend them against all attacks.”€

Rick:

Welcome back. Thanks for staying with us on Foundations of Freedom Thursday here on WallBuilders Live!

We”€™ve got time for one more question; it comes from Paul: “€œI have four grandkids, the oldest being very smart at the age of 6. With that being said, what is the best way to teach them about the real Constitution, not the watered-down version? I’d very much appreciate your help; thank you for your wisdom for our country.”€

David, Tim, what’s the best way to teach young children about the Constitution; and, not the watered-down version that most people get taught today, but actual original intent and the actual principles of the Constitution?

Tim:

It’s a great question. I think I would start with one of the things John Jay said; and, John Jay remember, was one of the authors of The Federalist Papers, helped get the Constitution ratified. He was an original Supreme Court justice and actually, was a chief justice on the original Supreme Court.

Study the Constitution for Yourself

John Jay said that every individual ought to diligently know and study the Constitution so that they would be prepared to teach the rising generation to be free. I think where it starts is that, as individuals, we have to spend time studying and knowing the Constitution ourselves; and certainly, as you study and know the Constitution, as you see principles as a Christian, there’s a lot of principles in the Constitution that I can directly point to in the Bible: whether it be the the separation of powers, or the rights of the individuals, or the quality of individuals, things that have become part of the American system of government and way of life that are Biblical principles.

Start With the Foundational Principles

I would start with the foundation and help young people understand basic principles. You don’t have to connect them constitutionally yet. Just lay a foundation of God made man and woman in His image, and we are God’s kids; therefore, we are all valuable.

I would lay out a philosophy upon which America was based as a foundation; but, I wouldn’t even connect the dots for them yet in the Constitution. I would begin teaching the principles; because, this is where most of our culture has gone lost is we don’t know the foundations that allow the Constitution to work.

The Constitution is really just the day-to-day functions and operations of how to make it work; but, it only works if you build the right foundation. So, first of all, I would study and know the Constitution so I would be prepared to teach the rising generation to be free, especially learning what those foundational principles are.

Helpful Resources

We have a book called The Founders Bible that actually shows exactly how the Bible shaped so much of of early America, and it has their quotes, and it’s all footnoted and documented so that you can go back and read in their original writings as they reference these Biblical principles in what they did. I would say to find these foundational-principle teachings upon which America was based and begin teaching foundational principles, not Constitution big picture, but little, bite-size principles that will help them build once they gain understanding.

David:

I would add two resources to that. One is–we have a DVD called “€œExceptional”€ which teaches the principles of the Declaration on which the Constitution is based; so, get that DVD “€œExceptional.”€ That’s an easy way to teach kids and grandkids the six principles in the Declaration.

Tim:

Or, you can download that MP4 off the website.

David;

That”€™s right; get that MP4. The other thing is, go to “€œStansbury Catechism on the Constitution.”€ It’s an elementary book; We will post a link for that on the site. You can sit out your kids and grandkids and cover two, three, four questions a day.

Now, you”€™re going to have to study it yourself; it”€™s stuff that you may not know. But, it’s all there in the written document. That document is short.

The Constitution is a Shortest national constitution in the world. It’s great for teaching your kids. That are two resources we can recommend.

Rick:

Very good stuff.

Learn the Constitutional, Historical Perspective for Issues Like Hate Crimes 

Also, at WallBuilders.com, you can get “€œChasing American Legends.”€ It’s a fun way to take your kids into Independence Hall and other historical places around the country and get them to learn those principles in a fun way as well as. We have lots of great resources.

We’ll have them for you right there at WallBuildersLive.com. Some good links, and thanks for the great questions today, folks; those have all been fantastic questions. Please keep sending them our way: [email protected] is the place to send them.  Also, be sure and consider us for one of your end-of-year gifts. WallBuildersLive.com is where you can do that; it helps us to keep spreading this good news.

Thanks for listening today. You’ve been listening to WallBuilders Live!

Thomas Jefferson said, “€œThe constitutions of most of our states, and of the United States, assert that all power is inherent in the people that they may exercise it by themselves that it is their right and duty to be at all times armed. That they are entitled to freedom of person, freedom of religion, freedom of property, and freedom of press.”