Legal Tender: Cash, Digital Currency, And More – On Foundations Of Freedom: Should businesses and government entities be required to accept cash? Can the federal government institute an electronic currency? What are the dangers of having a digital money system? What is the agenda behind the push for a cashless society? What is the reality of China’s social credit score? Tune in to hear the important answers to these questions and more!

Air Date: 08/18/20122

Guest: Mat Staver

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


Welcome to the intersection of faith and the culture. It’s WallBuilders Live. We are taking on the hot topics of the day from a biblical, historical and constitutional perspective.

I’m Rick Green, America’s Constitution coach and a former Texas legislator. And I’m here with David Barton and Tim Barton. Tim’s a national speaker, pastor and president of WallBuilders. 

David is, of course, America’s premier historian and the three of us you can find out more about at that’s also where you can sign up for our emails, you can find stations across the country where you can hear the program and you can make that one-time or monthly contribution.

When you do that, you’re like and shield with us. You’re becoming part of our team and you’re making it possible for us to reach more people, to spread the truth, to encourage and train and equip and inspire people to help restore America’s constitutional republic. So thank you for coming alongside us. Thank you for listening today to WallBuilders Live. We have got a great program lined up for you.

Alright, David and Tim, let’s dove into these Foundations of Freedom Thursday questions. We got quite a few. But we’ve got two that are really similar and we’re going have to call in for reinforcements here. We’re going to do ‘phone a friend’ on this one. But let me just read it to you guys real quick. First one comes out of North Carolina.

Question is, “Hey, they’re awesome folks at WallBuilders, have a new question that’s bothersome to me. I’m in North Carolina and in two weeks I have been to two locations of major tourist attractions that don’t accept cash. 

Legal Tender

“The first one was Carowinds, it’s kind of a six flags type park and the North Carolina battleship. Neither one of them would accept cash anywhere on their site, debit or credit cards only. What I was wondering is how are they allowed to do that when our money says right there on it, “This note is legal tender for all debts, public and private?” 

Does this statement not mean that they are legally obligated to accept it as payment? Or am I misunderstanding? Or is this just more illegal COVID fallout that we have to deal with? And if it is in fact, legal for them to not accept cash, do they have to provide a means for people to convert their cash to a credit card of some kind? Or do they get away with this under the guise of a convenience fee?

Sorry for the questions, but I’m really boggled by this whole situation and its legality. Any insight you can provide would be appreciate. Thanks for all you do. You’re an inspiration to me and I know many others as well. Sincerely, Sheila.”

Sheila, thank you for that one. And then the second one’s really short, guys. Nick emailed in and said, “Is it legal for a city owned board-run business, a public recreation facility to not accept U.S. dollars cash, in other words? I was under the impression it was legal US tender accepted by everyone.”

So, guys, we’ve been hearing a lot about this from the whole everything’s moving to digital, all the blockchain technology, all the other things that are kind of somewhat around this issue. And then, of course, we saw the Canadian thing where they froze funds of those truckers. So everybody’s kind of got this one on their minds, what is legal tender and can a business say, nope, no cash here?

Required System?


Well, I think it’s already interesting between the two questions, there is a very significant distinction. Because if two of these businesses or organizations are private entities, that already is in a different category, in my mind than something that is a city or a government entity of some kind, because it would certainly–

I think you have a much stronger argument that a government indeed would be required on some level to receive cash because it is legal tender. Whereas we’ve always been in the camp of a private business, an organization ought to have the freedom to conduct their business within certain obviously moral and ethical parameters, the freedom to do the things they want.

So if you’re providing a good or service and I said, hey, I can come fix your truck and I want to be paid in eggs, right, or I mean, you can kind of arbitrarily pick something, it would seem that even in this contractual notion or idea that individuals should be able to barter, to trade with things on an individual level and an agreement, again, a contract negotiation agreement kind of situation, they should be able to do that. At least that’s the argument I would make. And I think that’s where there is a significant distinction between these two.

Now, even with that being said, guys, I think we certainly would agree, we’ve talked about before the dangers of even if you have this innocent or innocuous something saying, hey, you know, we don’t accept cash if you have a small business, and maybe as a business owner, you have several employees and maybe they’re young kids or maybe you’re worried about them having a lot of cash on hand or losing money or theft and you think you know what, it’s just easier if it’s digital. 

Safety and Convenience

We don’t have to worry about the employees stealing or money getting left somewhere or whatever the case might be, there are certain benefits for certain organizations and businesses that they might just very innocently think, no, it’s just easier for us if someone can use some kind of app on their phone with some digital on some level.

There can be something that can be innocent and not necessarily malicious, not ill intent and negative motive. But even then we’d say it’s different probably for a private business than a government entity, not take away from the fact it’s troubling for downstream consequences, regardless of who does this. If we begin to condition society that you can just function from a digital realm reality platform, financially speaking, it does set it up for some major negative potential consequences in the future.


Now I think there’s some other historical aspects that I might disagree just a little bit on that in the sense that part of the reason that you have the enumerated powers in the Constitution that says what the feds can do is because at the time you had the 13 colonies each making their own money and having their own currency, and they said, no, no, it’s going to be uniform, all the way across all 13 states is going to be uniform. 

You still even have private money, I mean, the Federal Reserve notes that’s not by the government, that’s by the Federal Reserve, which is a private entity. And that has to be accepted publicly, it has to be legal tender in the United States.

So we’ve got examples where that even private enterprises when they come up with their own currency, it still has to be accepted everywhere. But it was the kind of deal where they said, no, we want the same currency being used everywhere in the United States, and we’re giving the federal government the right to say what their currency is going to be. Now, here’s where it gets tricky to me.

Paper Currency

Can the federal government come in and say, well, we don’t want it to be in paper currency, we want it to be an electronic currency? I don’t know, because the Constitution does give the feds the right to have currency and decide what the legal tender is. But does that mean it cannot be electronic? 

And I think part of this will go back to the freedom element, because when you start looking at electronic currency, now you’re talking about the ability to shut down business, the ability to kill the free market, the ability to kill interstate commerce, the ability to have programmable currency that is just for you and just for your spending habits and we’re going to let you have different spending habits and everybody else. That’s why I think the real question arises.

And what we’re seeing so far, at least with Rick, you use the example of Canada, what we’re seeing in Europe as well, what we’re seeing in China, other places is they are using that programmable or that digital currency to control the citizens, not give freedom and not help the free market.

And that’s where I think the danger of this is. But I’m not sure whether you can have a standard or a different standard between private and public kind of entities. I’m just not sure about that because of the way they handled the currency at the beginning.


But this would be different too if on some level you were… So I know this is a really dumb example. However, if you think of some theme park where you can score points or get tickets or tokens, you can do exchange with their tickets or tokens or whatever else and certainly, it’s based on the value of the US dollar. But you also are making some level of agreement with them of how that operation going to work.

US dollars

Or if somebody was coming over to do a chore or a task for a family and they said, hey, you know, we’ll Fiji, we’ll put you up, we can offer you an incentive package on some level. And an incentive package wasn’t necessarily physical US dollars, I think we would agree, even in the founding era, the idea wasn’t that you were required to do every transaction with a colonial or the US dollar. 

Because if you go and work for somebody on the farm and they say, hey, we’ll pay you with a cow, we’ll pay you with a horse, that still would’ve been a totally legal transaction that could have taken place. But each state could not come up with their own currency, their own legal tender. It had to be a uniform legal tender because we’re all part of the United States of America.

And that’s where I think there is some distinguish. Again, not to take away from the fact, I think it’s super dangerous to become a cashless society because of the power that gives the government, the implications it would have for downstream potential consequences. As already identified, when you look at China and they have a social credit system because they have more or less a cashless society.

So many things are run digitally in China and say, hey, we are we’re banning your passport where you can’t travel in a country or we’re not letting you use the social transit system, the public transit system. They can not let you buy so many goods stop you after so many goods. 

There’s a lot of dangers. And especially if we now expand it to ideas of the great reset or to ESG, some of what is there and what that looks like, I think there’s a lot of dangerous things in general when you talk about going to a cashless society.

Constitutionally Speaking

With that being said, I think constitutionally speaking, it may be, dad, as you pointed out, maybe not quite as cut and dry as it would seem, because the Constitution doesn’t specify what that currency, where that tender necessarily has to be. Just there needs to be a uniform, one that’s accepted in all of the different states so that you don’t have to do an exchange as you go between the connected 48 or the additional two that are off of mainland. With, again, all that being said, I think these are some interesting discussions that can go further on this.


Yeah, there’s so much involved here because like you pointed out at the very beginning, Tim, just the individual private business decision. I can think of times when I’ve been in a big event and we’re moving a lot of books and DVDs and we may not want to have that much cash that we’re traveling with. 

And so maybe what if we were to say, hey, we’re only taking credit cards at the table today and out of convenience for us, we didn’t want to deal with cash or we didn’t have change or whatever. We should have that individual right to do that.

And then there’s the question of does that credit card or that merchant account or whatever just represent cash, right? So is it still part of the same legal tender? So it definitely gets completely. 

It’s very nerve wracking to me to think what if cash was removed from society and you couldn’t go use that cash anywhere, whether it’s all the businesses just together saying no or government does it. So, man, it’s an interesting issue, especially in light of the things that we’ve seen over the last couple of years.


And that’s why we’re going to phone a friend, Mat Staver over at Liberty Counsel, he’s going to come on and share his thoughts on this as we come back from break. So stay with us, folks, Mat Staver from Liberty Counsel will be with us when we return on this Foundations of Freedom Thursday here at WallBuilders Live.

Hey, guys, it’s Tim Barton. And I want to let pastors and ministry leaders know about an opportunity coming up, actually in the very near future. September 1st in the Dallas area in Texas, we are hosting a pastors’ conference. And traditionally, we’ve hosted pastors’ conference, in fact, for decades we have and we would take pastors to Washington, DC, we would give them a special private after hours tour of the Capitol where pastors could go and firsthand see some of the spiritual foundation of the nation, some of the pastors involved in shaping the nation and we give them an opportunity to hear from congressmen and senators who were themselves Bible believing, Christians fighting to make a difference in God’s kingdom there in DC.

But now we’re going to bring pastors to our collection in Texas. We know that God’s allowed us to amass this amazing collection of original documents that show the Christian heritage of the nation. We want what pastors see that firsthand and still talk to congressmen and senators and find out what’s going on in the nation for pastors and ministry leaders. 

If you want to find out more information, go to, you can click on the initiative tab, go down to “Pastor’s Briefing”, click on that. And if you are a pastor, a ministry leader, we encourage you. Sign up and come join us in Dallas, September 1st for our pastors briefing. We hope to see you there. Oh.

Welcome Mat Staver


Welcome back to WallBuilders Live. Thanks for staying with us today. Mat Staver from Liberty Counsel is with us. Mat is kind of like my go to Constitution expert. I’m supposed to be America’s Constitution coach, but I’m always getting stumped by questions. I always tell everybody we’re just sojourners in this together, citizens learning how to live this thing out when I get stumped. Mat Staver, who I call Mat, thanks for coming on the program, man.


Thank you. Good to be with you.


Hey, so we got an interesting couple of questions about legal tender and we hadn’t really addressed this on the program. I know some states have been running with legislation on making gold and silver legal tender and there’s all those several clauses dealing with that in the Constitution. 

But one of our listeners actually said they went to a couple of places of business and they couldn’t use cash. I always thought cash was king and they were turned down from using cash. And so they’re basically asking, wait a minute, I thought this was legal tender and had to be accepted.

So I just wondered if you had any thoughts on that and where you think maybe this whole money thing is going with everything going digitally and then of course, the danger with what we saw Canada do with shutting people down that were political opposition and preventing them from even being able to access their funds. So this about a whole lot more than just being able to buy a burger at the corner. Legal tender is a big question. We wondered what your thoughts might be on it.

Removing the Gold Standard


Oh, legal tender is a huge question. Now, I think it was a real mistake for so many reasons to go off the gold standard because now we have nothing to back it other than the good word of the United States government. And obviously that can change: if they want to meet their spending needs, even though it’s way over budget, they just print more money. Well, none of us can do that.

And if you had a gold backed standard, it would give you some stability. But going away from that gold back standard, it goes into Never Neverland. And so now where we are is into this digital currency. And I think where they ultimately want to go is to completely do away with cash, do away with hard currency and all be electronic, which would be zeros and ones. That’s it.

And in fact, you saw this happen during COVID. They use this during COVID. They said, well, you know, we don’t want to use cash during COVID because it would contain some of the so-called virus that somebody would handle and they passed it around and it’s going to pass around COVID. So they use that as a scare tactic to get people to stop taking cash. And I think that that was part of this overall global reset to take us into a cashless society and use the pandemic as an excuse to go down that route.

An Agenda?


And what would they do with that? Like, what would be their agenda? Why would they want to go all digital?


For control. If you’re all your money is just simply in an electronic format, then someone can just press a button and then without you having any recourse, all of a sudden your bank account is gone. Oh, where is it? It went into Never Neverland. It’s not there. You don’t have any currency to back it up. The bank doesn’t have any currency to back it up. And that’s what happens with what we see happening in Canada.

For example, we already see this with some nonprofits with regards to their landing pages where they have it on their website and you go there and you want to make a contribution or you want to purchase an item that they’re providing for some contribution costs, we’ve seen some of these radical pro LGBTQ organizations literally take down their landing pages without any notice, shut down their bank accounts without any notice, and therefore weaponizing this as a way to literally push them into the ground.

So if you can’t transact with money, if you have no way to transact with money, and the only way to do it is digital, then they have total control of you. So it’s a complete total control that I think is all part of the global reset. That’s part of the whole cashless society. And I think it sets a very, very dangerous precedent.

We read in the Book of Revelation that you can’t buy or sell. Well, obviously, when you were much younger, before the current digital age, it’s hard to understand how that actually operates. Now you can see how indeed if everything goes electronic, how it’s done. Say, for example, if all of your cash is on your cell phone and you just wave it over some scanning device, all you have to have is that cell phone disconnected. 

We Must learn from CHINA

Or like in China, for example, if you have a certain number of social credits that go against you because China doesn’t think you’re acting the way he should towards the country, maybe you’re making some statements criticizing the government, they literally shut you down.

So when you take that cell phone to try to get into access to a location, you can be denied. People have been denied go into what would be the equivalent of our TSA check in at the airport, they’ve been denied going to places of business. When they try to do a financial transaction, they’ve been denied as well.

So when you have nothing to back it up and you have nothing in your wallet or your purse that you can exchange for real money, then they have you complete total control.


And at that point, you can’t even go buy groceries, you can’t provide for your family. I mean, this is real. And we’ve seen it in China and places that are implementing this. And this is also the ESG thing, it’s whole another topic for another day, but it’s what’s at the heart of a lot of this and how they will control that. Is there a constitutional argument for saying no, you have to allow for legal tender that is physical? Or do you think at this point that they could probably do this and eventually phase out physical transactions if they wanted to?


I think there’s a constitutional argument that the legal tender has to be there and that the legal tender that we have is usable. What I am concerned about is the federal government with the banks and so forth, just sucking up, for example, you have certain coins that they don’t want to put in the circulation anymore. So, as the banks get those coins, they just bring them in, they give them back to the federal government and they’re off the market. You don’t see them anymore.

Chilling Effect

And that could easily happen where the actual hard cash, your dollars, your hard coins and currency literally gets sucked out of the marketplace so that there’s nothing left. It’s kind of like a food shortage, if you will. So then what do you do if you have no food on the shelves?

What do you do if you can’t get cash at the ATM? And there’s just no cash available because it’s being sucked up by the federal government. Then the only thing you have left is some kind of digital mechanism and that’s when you’re under total control.

I think at that point in time you do have an argument that you have to have some other kind of legal currency that is fungible, not just zeros and ones and some never, never cloud-based system.


Man, can you imagine the chilling effect on speech if you knew that the government, if they didn’t like what you were saying, they could shut you off with a flip of a switch. I mean, we’re seeing the abuse with the FBI and everything else, I mean, people have to realize this is real. We’re not some dystopian novel here. This is real life in America. And it would completely silence Americans. It would be the end of liberty.


You know, there’s a movie some time ago, it was a fictitious movie, but it was based upon the technology that existed at that time. And boy, how true has it become. And it was really underestimating the technology as it is even now.

The Threat is Real

But what you have is not only the surveillance state, but you also had your credit cards just simply being denied. So you go to a restaurant, you go to a store, you go to buy gas, and the credit card gets denied because there’s nothing in your bank account. When it becomes electronic and you don’t have any cash or anything to trade or barter, then it’s all digital. So your credit cards can go, your debit cards can go, your smartphone system can go. And once that is eliminated, then what do you do?

If you, for example, because your cell phone is on you and you’re at some event and the government doesn’t like you, you say, for example, you’re in Washington, DC. on January 6th but you’re nowhere near the capital, but you’re in the district and you’re there for a peaceful assembly, now they find all the people that are there on their cell phones.

And what if they were to just simply say, we’re going to shut all of you off, or if you go to this particular event, we are going to disable you? And now you can’t pay your bills, you go into bankruptcy. It’s a huge threat to freedom.


Yeah. Man, it’s hard to believe we’re even having the conversation, but it’s real it’s happening. Listen, folks, is the website. You should follow Mat there, get on his email list, tons of major, major cases on the front lines right now, the one with the Illinois health care workers recently settled for 10 million. We had Mat on last week to talk about that. He’s got a lot of the military cases going as well.

Something You Can Do

And Mat, just and I don’t know how much you want to share publicly, but you guys are under constant attack because of the stances that you’re taking. How can people pray for you guys? In addition to donating financially, what can they do to help you all?


Well, thank you, Rick, certainly, we are under attack. I mean, we were listed on one of the locations in Washington, DC. because of our involvement in the Dobbs case. We filed an amicus brief in that case and so we were targeted by some of these radical organizations.

So we had to get and still do get various armed security and coordinate with the other law enforcement officers. But there’s also electronic attacks. There’s all kinds of things, death threats and things like that.

But we’re just focused. We’re not going to be intimidated. People can go to our website, We’re having to spend just additional resources for physical protection for our staff and for a ministry.

You know what? God’s going to provide and we will not, we will not be intimidated under any circumstances. But again, our website where you can go to and donate is,


Such a warrior for liberty and for biblical principles. That’s Mat Staver., the website, we’ll have links today at Stay with us, folks, we’ll be right back with David and Tim Barton.

Bring a Speaker to Your Area

Hey, this is Tim Barton with WallBuilders. And as you’ve had the opportunity to listen to WallBuilders Live, you’ve probably heard the wealth of information about our nation, about our spiritual heritage, about the religious liberties, about all the things that makes America exceptional. And you might be thinking as 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 and there’s a tab for scheduling. And if you’ll click on that tab, you’ll notice there’s a list of information from speakers, bios 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.


We’re back on WallBuilders Live. Thanks for staying with us. Back with David or Tim now and thanks to Mat Staver for joining us from Liberty Counsel. So, just as you guys were saying right before the break, I mean, really dangerous situation if you allow government to control everything digitally and they can just shut you off. So that’s a big warning sign. We need to be looking further into this issue.

ESG Scores


You know, one of the things that that really gives me concern, by the way, it is really nice to be able to have a guy who founded a constitutional law school who actually studies all of the Constitution to be able to speak to something like this. So you get a Mat Staver in there and this is it’s like he knows all the clauses of the Constitution, rather than just a few, which is really cool.

But one of the things that really kind of gives me more pause with this, not just from a constitutional standpoint, it also has a lot to do with who’s implementing this. Because if this was a policy coming down under someone like a Calvin Coolidge who is a hardcore advocate of the free market and of limited government, then I don’t have the same distress that I have, if I have a globalist who is an ESG guy who wants to see bigger government, more government control like a Biden saying, hey, we want to move away from currency.

And so part of this, I think, kind of goes to who’s in charge right now and what I see what’s happening with Canada and what Canada did with credit cards and the use of credit card machines, and, by the way, credit card processing groups like Stripe, it’s coming out what they’re doing and what they’re doing to manage and control different people and where they’re giving their money and where they’re putting it and all the globalism in the World Economic Forum kind of stuff.

When you start looking at what’s happening right now with refusing cash and wanting to go cashless, and you line that up with all these other movements that are in the world right now and line it up with the fact that America has a bunch of globalist that are running the country right now who totally agree with World Economic Forum, the Great Reset, and so one of the big concerns is we read this thing and we’re concerned about the Constitution.

Globalist Agenda

The Biden administration reads it, and they’re not at all concerned about the Constitution. They’re more concerned about what’s happening with the World Economic Forum and the Global Reset and everything else. And so that gives us a whole different way of looking at this–

Because it’s not like they’re reading the Constitution saying, here’s what we can do under the Constitution. They’re not reading it and saying here’s what we want to be able to do to shift the world to our position.

Legal Tender: Cash, Digital Currency, And More – On Foundations Of Freedom


Yeah, ultimately, they’re trying to fundamentally transform America. This is a tool they can use to change America forever, to make America be more communist, that the people more dependent on the government. This seems like a very good tool and avenue for part of the Great Reset, the ESG movement to go cashless because it puts government in more control. And of course that is a dangerous position.


Yeah. And they’re stiff definitely with all the stuff in the last couple of years, I mean, we’ve seen the abuse of power and where they’re using our freedom against us. And it reminds me of when we had Senator Birdwell on years ago talking about some of the things in the Bill of Rights and when you’re at war, how things sometimes are a little bit different.

Man, guys, I feel like we’re in a culture war right now. We do need to approach some of these things differently than we would if we had a country that still had most people still loving the Constitution and could agree on basic principles. Back to your book, ‘U-Turn’, David, and where you had all the different cultural influences pulling in the same direction. So it’s an interesting time. We need to be approaching these issues with wisdom and discernment and praying for God to give us wisdom on our position.

Thanks so much for listening today, folks. It’s been Foundations of Freedom Thursday here on WallBuilders Live.