Speech, Behavior and Representation – on Foundations of Freedom Thursday: Today on Foundations of Freedom Thursday we address listener questions. If the leaders of our country are throwing the constitution out the window, is it too late to make a difference? If you wear a MAGA hat, is that free speech, or is it behavior? Why do we not have 2 senators for every county in the states, and representatives based on the number of citizens in each county? Are there any resources for children 10-13 for remembering God’s hand in the founding of our nation?
Air Date: 3/16/2023
On-air Personalities: David Barton, Tim Barton and Rick Green
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Welcome to the intersection of faith and the culture. This is WallBuilders, where we’re taking on the hot topics of the day from a biblical, historical and constitutional perspective. Thanks for joining us today, be sure to visit our websites WallBuilders.com and WallBuildersLive.com , you can get a wealth of information at both of those websites. And that’s also the place you can come alongside us make that one time, or monthly contribution. And yes, that helps put fuel in the tank for us to be able to reach more people. We can train more pastors, legislators, young people, teachers, all the different things we’re doing to sow into the culture and bring truth to the culture, you can be a part of that make that donation today. We appreciate your support, and all of you across the country that have already been doing that. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. We appreciate you being part of it. I’m Rick Green, America’s constitution coach and former Texas legislator. And I’m here with Tim and David Barton. Tim’s a national speaker and pasture and president of WallBuilders. David, of course, is America’s premier historian and our founder here at WallBuilders. You found us on a foundation of freedom Thursday. Now that’s the day where we are able to take your questions and dive into foundational questions about the Constitution, the declaration, Founding Fathers, maybe it’s a biblical principle applied to a hot topic of the day, an issue that you’ve been thinking about. Send those questions in [email protected] . That’s [email protected] . Let’s get into that first question of the day guys. This one comes from Wendy she asked about taking a constitution class, she said I’m wanting to take your constitution class. Plus, I have asked my church to have a connections group using your program. However, with the mess our country is in, is it too late to acquire this learning? If the leaders of our country are throwing our constitution out the window, with such disregard and it’s such a fast pace. Will this class be beneficial? And will it help in any way to get our country back? I do not want to give up but it almost seems we need only God to save us. I enjoy, your courage and your encouragement. Guys, Wendy’s not alone. We get these questions a lot. You know, is it too late? Is America too far gone? Should we give up? What difference could it make? All of those questions kind of fit the tone of what Wendy is asking. And I hear her heart. I understand. But I’m guessing we’re all three probably thinking the same thing. But what’s y’all’s answer to Wendy?
I would start off with saying that we don’t think it’s too late. I mean, there’s just too many biblical examples of the people thought it was gone, God didn’t. So one of the things is really clear is we don’t always have a good grasp for God’s timing, and what God’s going to do. And if God has chosen for a nation to go down, most of the time, the nation didn’t even know that. So one of the things that I think is really important for this kind of discussion, is that we approach this the same way John Quincy Adams approached it. And he had this kind of life message mantra that duty is ours results are God’s. And so it’s not up to us to know when nations are going to pass away, when nations are going to be born. That’s not our call, that’s God’s call. What’s up to us is doing everything we can until that is too far gone, and we’re not too far gone. As long as we have opportunities we’re not too far gone. Even the church, the Christian church, in China’s an underground church, they’re not too far gone. I mean, just because we may have to change the way we do things doesn’t mean that it’s hopeless, or that’s gone. So first thing is I don’t, I definitely don’t think that we’re too far gone to be able to do it. The second thing is, you need to study revivals in history, because you find that revivals turn nations around. But you also find that it takes decades to turn a nation around. It’s not always really quick. the slavery issue, people thought that was going to end the nation. It didn’t. But it took decades of controversy and political stuff, even civil war, and America was preserved. So I think we’re a lot in the same way. Now we have a culture war going on. And you have to look at things in the aspect of thinking about the future and training for the future. What can you do now to train people who be warriors and 2, 3, 5, 7 years? What can you do now to take people in the Constitution class, and get them to say, hey, you know, now that you know the Constitution, get on a school board, get on a city council start building a farm team, one of the problems we have right now is we don’t have enough people ready for higher office that actually know the Constitution. And it’s going to take a while to get them trained. But that doesn’t mean that we can’t take lower offices. And we can’t take not only school boards, but junior college boards that mean there’s no way that doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t have well funded people trained so they can be regents on universities and go in and do what they’re doing in Florida and take the woke out the universities. There’s just too many ways of going at it. So one thing I would suggest is just stop watching the results. Stop watching whether it’s good, bad or indifferent. You start moving forward with training people, encourage them to get involved, show them how to get involved and that’s probably the other thing we’ve been talking about a lot recently, is process. Get involved in the political process. Learn how the process works. Once you have the knowledge of the Constitution, you need to be able to apply that knowledge. And that means through politics, you’ve got to get in the process of… How does an election work? How does a campaign work? What are the campaign filing deadlines? What kind of training do I need to be a candidate? What kind of training can I provide for other candidates? That process stuff has not changed in hundreds of years? It’s not going to change. You just got to get the right philosophy in it. So that’s what I would throw out from the first standpoint is, no, I don’t think it’s hopeless at all. There’s too much history. I think we’re in a revival. But that means decades. And I think we just have to get that mentality, we got to do the right thing. And we have to master not only the Constitution, but the process. If we can get the content and the process together, I think that’s where you start seeing changes and be happy with little changes. If they are school board or city council or, I ran five school board members, only one got elected. Great. You got one, that’s 20% of what you need. Do it again and again. So that’s the kind of mentality I would throw out. Guys what do y’all got?
I would maybe point to a example. If you look at a junior high kid, when they’re in a relationship, and they break up and they think like this is the world is going to end for them. And you’re like, kid, you’re 13 years old, right? You’re totally fine. Well, what’s their problem? Their problem is, when they don’t have perspective. this seems so big, because they don’t understand that there’s so much more in their life and to their story. And I think when people are looking at America right now, and going, Oh, my gosh, America, it’s over, it’s going to end and you know, whether it be with some of this talk about the digital currency coming and what Biden’s doing and all these issues and disasters, we’ve seen, the polarization in America. People feel like America is over. And even though like I get it, right, we’re in junior high. We just broke up with a girlfriend / a boyfriend and like, it’s awful. I get it. Except if you know American history, I mean dad you alluded to this a little bit. But if you go back to the American Revolution, the Patriots were so far outnumbered. I mean, significantly so, by the British military, by even the loyalists in America, estimates are it’s about 25% of Americans that were in favor of the cause of liberty, about 25%. Were supporting the Loyalists, the British and about 50% just wanted this thing to be resolved. Right? They don’t want drama, leave me alone. That’s probably pretty similar to where we are today. Well, if you actually break down these numbers a little further, it’s only about 8% to 10% of the Americans that actually participated in the fight for freedom and liberty. And we’re talking about America, who was not even really their own nation, becoming a nation, taking on the number one military power in the world. We were so outnumbered, we were so outgunned, and yet we were able to win. There’s a lot of divine providence along the way. Obviously, God had his hand on it, God was doing things. But people rolled up their sleeves and got involved. And you look at the abolition movement. Even though every single northern colony in America, early America, they passed laws for the abolition of slavery. Slavery wasn’t over in America. In fact, the abolition movement was really outnumbered in a lot of regards for a long time in America, there was a lot of battles, there was a lot of friction. And if you’re in the abolition movement back in the 1820s, 1830s, 1840s, man, you might be thinking this is not going away, this is a major problem. You’re coming to the Civil War. The point is, when you start studying history, you realize that where we are now is not a more significant crisis, necessarily, than where we were then. And I can imagine somebody listening right now, they’re going to point out Wait a second, no, right? If Joe Biden brings in a central bank, digital currency, right, like this is over, game changer, and I understand the argument, but this is where also history gives you an interesting perspective. Dad, you and I were talking not long ago, as you were doing some research for the next installment of the American story and going through some of the early presidents and telling their stories. And you were talking about Andrew Jackson and Dad, I think you said was over 800 banks that close under Jackson that the government took over? Like even what we’re seeing now is not a brand new thought. Was it 800 banks. Am I remembering that right?
Yeah, it was 800 banks at a time when America had a much smaller population, many fewer states. I mean, that is a massive, massive collapse led to an eight year depression. It was serious stuff.
All that to say is where we are now is not necessarily the most significant, crucial moment in American history that we can’t overcome, not to say it’s not important. It is clearly important. And if we don’t fight and overcome these issues in our nation, then yeah, America might be done. But it’s not gone so far that we can at this point, roll up our sleeves and with God’s help turn this thing around and you know, Dad as you mentioned, just getting involved locally and not worrying about the results, the John Quincy Adams mentality, duty is ours results are God’s. And even what we learned in the parables from Jesus, that we’ve been called to be faithful, well done, good and faithful servant, be faithful in doing the little things. When you’re faithful in little, you will be ruler over much is what the Bible tells us. We need to be faithful in the little and not be so overwhelmed and overcome as this junior high relationship scenario. And I don’t mean to say that to be degrading to anybody in junior high, or to anybody that feels like, you know, maybe America is in a really significant trouble. And you feel like I’m belittling it by comparing it or likening it to a junior high relationship. I don’t mean that at all other than if we had perspective, even if you think about it in the book of Numbers in the Bible, when the Israelites were going to take the land of Canaan, and God tells them, hey, choose a leader from his tribe, let’s go check this thing out, Moses sends the leaders in. And when they come back, we all remember ten of the leaders said that it’s… there’s no way. I mean, yes, the land was really good. There was great things there. But we were grasshoppers in our own sight, these were giants, they’re going to squish us like bugs. And Joshua and Caleb, say, guys you’re crazy. Let’s go take this land right now. Because they maintained the biblical perspective, that even though we know again, in the Bible, that there are things that are impossible for man that are possible with God. And if we’re looking at America now going, it’s impossible. The only reason we can think is impossible, because we don’t have a God perspective. And we need to make sure we maintain that faith perspective, that with God, all things are possible. Is there a lot of work to do? Absolutely. I mean, absolutely. There’s so much work to do. But God definitely equips the people that he calls and we know that God can definitely strengthen us help turn this thing around.
Man, there’s so much there, guys, that y’all said, I’ll just want to reiterate that, that’s a generational mindset that you just shared, we have to think long term and not be selfish. We tend to be selfish, we want the results, now. We’re immediate gratification. So the John Quincy Adams attitude is what we need to shift to, away from immediate gratification, to we’re going to do our duty, even if we don’t get to see the results. We’re going to plant the trees that we may not get to enjoy the shade of. You know, we’re going to do this for the next generation. And if the Lord comes back great. If he doesn’t come back for 1,000 years, we’ve done our part. And we love to joke about it, but Jeremiah, you know, I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you, everybody’s got the mug or they got the pillow or they got it on something somewhere in their house. But we don’t talk about the fact they were marching off to 70 years of captivity. Who knows that we may be headed for bad years or good years. We don’t know. But we do our duty. We plant our gardens, we marry our wives, we raise our children, we build our houses, all the things he said to do. He’s got great plans for us. And just a great question from Wendy. Wendy, we encourage you do your part, do your duty, leave the results to God. Going to take a quick break, guys, we’ll be back with our next question in just a moment, you’re listening to WallBuilders and we’re taking on the foundations of freedom today, send your questions in to [email protected] .
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We’re back here on WallBuilders. Thanks for staying with us on this foundations of freedom Thursday program. More of our programming available at WallBuildersLive.com . You can get into the archives there and get some more of those good news Fridays and foundations programs as well as the interviews throughout the week. Let’s take that next question guys. It comes from Joe. And he’s asking in January 13th Good news Friday, you stated that there’s a difference between something you say and something you do. Your example was can you say you want to burn the American flag, that’s protected speech. But if you actually burn the flag, that’s something you’ve done, and it would not be covered. Then later in the program we talked about a teacher that was reprimanded for wearing a MAGA hat. Wouldn’t that be something he did and therefore not covered by free speech? Please don’t misunderstand, I think the judge’s ruling was correct. I’m just trying to sift out the difference. I always have another question that I’ve been pondering, Mr. Green, if I remember correctly, has stated in the past that the 14th amendment makes the Constitution the law for all the states. If this is correct, why do we not have two senators for every county and representatives based on the number of citizens in each county? Why would that not apply? Probably not the brightest questions to ask, but I ask. Thanks for all you do. The three of you are awesome. Hey Joe, every question is bright. We appreciate you sending in questions and there is no question that is too simple or whatever. We all have these questions, we all learn In these things, we sharpen each other’s countenance. Guys, just real quick on the 14th Amendment question. It doesn’t change the structure or the process of those states. It, what we mean is that it applies the Constitution, meaning like with the Second Amendment, it makes sure that states can’t violate your right to keep and bear arms any more than the federal government were prior to the 14th Amendment the second amendment only protected you from the feds, but after the 14th it protects you from the States as well. So that’s one we do dive into in our constitution class. But getting a little bit of nuance guys, how do you separate between things you say and things you do in terms of what’s protected?
This really went back to what was called the Johnson decision by the Supreme Court, where the Supreme Court took a statute that prohibited flag burning, and said, no, you can burn the flag, because that is speech. Now, that statute had been there for a long time, the American flag had been venerated and protected way back through war after war after war, civil war, American War for Independence, War of 1812. So it was a symbol of the country and it was to be protected. So what happens is the court comes along and says, Well, you know, not only are these war protesters in 72 range the anti Vietnam stuff, not only do they have a right to speak against that, they have the right to do actions that align with their speech, that was something new, to say that I have a right for my action to align with my speech. That’s like saying, you have the… you have the right to call for violence, and if I do that violence that’s also my protected free speech. No, it’s not. When you start doing things that’s different. Now, what made this different is there’s a statute on this. So the MAGA hat, there’s no statute that says you can’t wear a maga hat, because it’s a violent act. But there was a statute that said you can’t burn a flag because nearly every time you burned a flag, you started a riot, I mean, that was just guaranteed that the respect for America was so high, most generations the last 50 years had no concept of what that was like. But even back to the Civil War, we went through black history month in February, we told the story of two black heroes who are Medal of Honor recipients. And as you look at what they say about the flag, and they got the Medal of Honor for their protection of the American flag. The concept of protecting the flag was at a level that most of us cannot comprehend today, the love of country and the protection of that the number of black Americans who protected that flag who gave their life to protect that flag. And that’s why these two guys got the Medal of Honor is they were laying down their life to protect the desecration of that flag. That’s not the same as wearing a MAGA hat. And so the distinction really comes back to the core at that time had a very clear statute with a very clear record of what it meant and what was limited to, you could advocate burning the flag, but you could not do it. And there’s a big difference in that, particularly when it led to the level of respect for the United States and the level of violence that happened if you attack the nation. So this was an era of patriotism, very different from what’s defined today. It’s easy to understand if you go back through history and see how special America was. And today, too many Americans are ambivalent about how special America still is. Yeah we’re special, but you know, if it doesn’t work out, that’s just the way it is. There’s very few people willing to lay their life on the line in the same way that we saw in previous generations. And I don’t mean that militarily, I mean, citizen wise, citizen wise. So that’s the difference with the Magga hat. Maga hat is part of what this generation is, but it did not have a statute protecting the Magga hat. That’s just an expression of free speech. It’s politically disliked by those on the left. People and progressives especially, I mean, that’s why they did the January 6 narrative to a great degree to try to villainize everything associated with Make America Great. They want that to be a symbol that if it ever appears in public, it’s an insurrection symbol. I mean, that’s their attempt politically to remake it. But there’s not a statute. So Joe, that’s the big difference is we came out of a culture in America where that statute protected something that was very American that people have given their lives for, as opposed to something that is an expression of free speech. You still had the right to express yourself, the court should have come back in that case and said, hey, you got the right to be anti war, you got the right to protest, you got the right to do all that. But you don’t have the right to burn the flag because you want to protest. That’s something that has been off limits politically. It was not political speech. It was part of the essence of the nation. So that’s the way I would look at it.
All right, guys. We got time for one more question. This one comes from, I believe, she… might be pronounced, Laverle. I’ve never seen a name spelled that way. So thank you for sending in the question, Laverle. Appreciate it. Your question is about children’s interest. Says throughout the Old Testament, God often told his people to remember the going out of Egypt and crossing the Red Sea he gave us the gift of America. People forget the miracles involved. Has anybody written on remembering his hand for children 10 to 13 years old? So, I love her question guys. She’s basically saying, you know, we’re told in the Old Testament to remember the former days. David, I remember you talking about that the first cassette tape I ever heard from you, you talked about the importance of remembering the former days. And so she’s asking have we got a method of teaching 10 to 13 year olds, about God’s hand in the forming of America?
What did you say you listened to, Rick? A cassette?
Well, I have to describe it for folks. You know, whenever the little tape thing would break, you take your pencil out and you’d roll, you’d put it in the little, and roll it up. And you’d tape the… Anyway. Yeah, yeah, very… cassette tapes. I’m showing my age.
Those are I mean, legitimate antiques, now. Once it’s 25 years old, that’s an antique. So we’re almost two generations of antiques here, bro. That’s an old, that’s an old listen, bro.
And the first one I had from you was America’s Godly Heritage.
Oh, wow. Yeah, that’s probably in a museum somewhere, too. So the answer… And that is a great question. I mean, getting young people, getting children to understand God’s providential intervention in America. How special America was that God went out of his way to perform miracles, to help us exist, to help us survive to help us continue that this is God’s plan, as demonstrated by his voluntary intervention, that’s something really important to understand. It’s not like God is just letting us coast. And whatever we do, that’s going to be fine with him. He really does have plans and purposes for nations, and maybe none more than America with the intervention he’s had here. There’s a few nations that you can really find that intervention. So it’s super important to get that transmitted on to kids, so that they do understand that, you know, not only is America unique, historically, she’s unique in the eyes of God, because look what God’s willing to do. So there’s a book that came out back in the 70s. It’s really good for all adults. It’s called The Light and the Glory. And it went through so many of the miracles that God did over nearly 400 years, and went through them and really highlighted them. It was one of the books that really got me started in looking at the history for the first time, because what it had I had never seen before, but it had really great footnotes, going back to original documents and letters from the founders, etc. So that got me started. Well, there is a book today called The Light and the Glory for Children. And that’s a really, really good book. It helps people understand that God does have a plan and a purpose for America and we need to be part of that. Bill Federer’s, another one who’s out there that’s got a lot of good stuff for kids showing God’s hand in history. So that stuff really, really is good. And by the way, I mean, it’s a good thing for every adult to read the kids versions, too, because it reduces it to such simple stuff. And it’s so clear, because you write really clearly for kids, and it’d be good to write for adults sometimes that way. But nonetheless, that’s a good book for everybody.
I would also point out, the American story, we do tell a lot of the providential moments at various points in American history. Dad, you mentioned Bill Federer, who’s very good friend, friend of the program, we’ve had him on many times, and I’m sure we’ll have him on many times in the future. Well, his wife, Susie, has also written some books, and they’re called Miracles in America, or Miracles in American History, I guess is what it is. Nonetheless, those are ones that specifically highlight times where people prayed, God got involved, God did miracles. And so those are additional books to look at. And then we… there’s a lot of other resources as well on our website, that even there’s early biographies, we’ve gone back and reprinted. And I’m saying early. Some of these are from the 70s 80s 90s. But they were done for kids to learn some of the heroes of American history. So those are other ones to go and look at in the WallBuilders website. But certainly, between The Light and The Glory, Bill and Susie Federer, the American story, there are some great resources out there and ones that people really ought to be able to read and go back and learn some of those incredible providential moments of American history.
And this concept really, of teaching kids about the miracles in our history. I mean, we got the biblical precedent on that. That’s what the Jewish people did for their children. Look what God did with the Red Sea. Look what God did with Pharaoh, look what God did… And that concept of teaching the miracles that helps impress on you just how special the nation is and how it needs to be preserved. And I think even if more adults knew the miracles that God had performed, it really helps us understand better our responsibility to help preserve the nation that God put so much and invested so much into. When we don’t know those miracles, It’s a little easier to turn our back on the nation and let it pass. But I think this is a vital thing for everybody. It’s a great question, teaching those kids in miracles, but hopefully if parents teach the kids in miracles, the parents will learn those miracles as well. We all need to know those miracles that God used in producing and preserving In America.
It’s also just more fun guys, the way you’re describing it. And when you tell those miracles and those stories, the kids are going to pay more attention than just memorizing dates and names. And in the old… you know, the way we typically teach history, so I mean, exactly how it was done in the Bible, right? They recounted all the stories and went through the drama of all the different things that were experienced, just like crossing the Red Sea and, and all the other things. So this is definitely the way to do it. And I can tell you, folks, your kids will enjoy it. They’ll, if you do it well, if you use the stories, and you bring the history to life, and you actually tell it through the eyes of the people that experienced it much the same way those Old Testament stories are told in the Bible, your kids will enjoy that. And it’ll stick with them. And they’ll get those life principles as well. Lots of great tools already recommended to you, today. Many, many more at our website WallBuilders.com. So check that out today. And we’ve got links there for you, as well. And just make this purposeful. I think this is one of the things we’ve been missing. We’ve kind of left it up to the schools, left it up… even if it’s the private schools, right, we’ve left it up to someone else to educate our kids. What a great question that’s been asked today and a in a real challenge to all of us, to learn that history. Remember, civic and biblical ignorance, that’s the petri dish where bad government grows. And we can solve that and prevent that by having civic and biblical literacy. Teach these stories, learn these stories, spread these stories. That’s what we’re all about here at WallBuilders is equipping you with this information but now you’ve got to take it and teach it to your kids into yourself, but also the people in your community. Thanks so much for listening today for WallBuilders.