The Filibuster, Gender Terms, And More – On Foundations Of Freedom: Why do the Dems want to end the filibuster? Are term limits in line with the original intent of the Constitution? Can Biden codify abortion? How are vile prayers allowed on the House floor; yet, not gender terms like “man,” “woman,” etc.? Tune in to hear the answers to these questions and more!

Air Date: 02/04/2021

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

President Thomas Jefferson said, “I know no safe depository of the ultimate powers of the society, but the people themselves. And if we think they’re 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.”

Rick:

Welcome to the intersection of faith and the culture. You found WallBuilders Live, where we talk about today’s hottest topics on policy and faith, and the culture, all of it from a biblical, historical and constitutional perspective. And we are so glad you’ve joined us today. I hope that you will share this program with your friends and family. 

We’re all about speaking truth into the culture, standing for that truth. And if you can help us spread the word, then we will get more people engaged in the process from a biblical perspective. That way they can be salt and light in our communities, our states, and our nation.

Check out our website at wallbuilderslive.com. That’s where you can find a list of the stations across the country where we can be heard. And that’s where you can also download some of the archives and programs from the last few weeks, and learn more about us here on the program. I’m here with David Barton, he is America’s premier historian and our founder at WallBuilders. 

Tim Barton is a national speaker and pastor and president of WallBuilders. And my name is Rick Green. I’m a former Texas legislator and America’s constitution coach. So check us out on wallbuilderslive.com, and while you’re there, please consider making that one-time or monthly contribution, we’re a listener-supported program.

Join Us!

So thank you out there, all of you listeners that continue to support us with those monthly donations, or one-time donations, whatever you can do. It helps amplify our voice, helps us to add stations, helps us to get this information in as many hands as possible and we sure appreciate you being part of that.

Alright, David, Tim, Foundations of Freedom Thursday today, first questions coming from Joe. He said, “Please explain the filibuster. Is it good or bad?” He also said you guys are awesome. I thought I would just throw that in. He said it. I didn’t say it. But you guys are awesome. 

What About the Filibuster?

Alright, David, Tim, what about the filibuster? Because we’ve actually talked about this here on the program. It’s a big debate right now, seems the Democrats want to end the filibuster in the US Senate. Republicans want to prevent that from happening so that they can keep the Democrats from doing whatever they want with just 50 votes plus, Kamala Harris. Where did the filibuster come from? It’s not in the Constitution. So is it good? Is it bad? What do you guys think?

Tim:

Well, let me point out that I do think this is a little bit like a double edged sword when you talk about term limits. There is a reason that people are absolutely in favor of term limits, because you should not be able to be a career politician. 

It doesn’t make sense that people like Joe Biden, who for 50 years have been an elected official, that doesn’t make sense. If you’ve never had a real job and done real things, and the majority of your life has been in politics, those things don’t make sense. So in that essence, you understand why people want term limits.

The same time the Founding Fathers wanted, we the people to be in charge. And if we the people are in charge, and you keep electing the same person, well, they are being represented by the person they chose, therefore, as we the people, and if you put term limits, you’re saying, well, we’re not going to let you choose this person. After so many years, you have to choose somebody else. So that’s not really letting the people be in charge.

I’m pointing out just there’s two sides of this argument. And that’s kind of, in my mind what I see with this filibuster, because certainly, this is not what the Founding Fathers had designed, because part of the notion of we the people who considering the governed, they wanted the simple majority to prevail on what’s going on. 

The Other Side of the Sword

The other side of that sword is, but it is helpful when you have a crazy socialist agenda, to be able to say, yeah, you’re going to need more people to agree with you on those crazy things, or you’re not going to get that passed. So I do understand the argument for both sides. But I mean, guys, we’ve talked about this many times. This certainly wasn’t the original intent from the Founding Fathers.

David:

Yeah, we’ve taken the position before that if you go by original intent, you don’t have a filibuster. And I’ve told Republicans that in the senate when they’re there that this is not a good idea, they said, yeah, you know, we need it. Because if we don’t have the filibuster, then there’s going to be a few republicans that join us all the Democrats, and they’ll get in, whatever, and they go through all the liberal policies might happen and say, yeah. 

And on the other side, when you guys have 52, or 53, and want to do something conservative, you won’t have the numbers either. And so it’s a sword that always cuts both ways, which is what the Constitution does, it can be used by either side and whichever side is in power.

So Founding Fathers were not in favor of what we now call a filibuster. And filibuster is something that allows one person or a smaller group overcome the majority. And so whether you go to George Washington, whether you go to Thomas Jefferson, they both said, the fundamental principle of the Constitution requires that the will of the majority shall prevail. 

So they didn’t want to see the 42% out-vote the 58%. And with the filibuster, filibusters, we have today came in and back in 1918, I believe it was 1913-1918, anyway. I think it’s rule 22 and the Senate and rule 22 from Woodrow Wilson, another great innovation from Woodrow Wilson administration.

The Old Fashioned Way

Rick:

A lot of sarcasm there, folks.

David:

Yes, it was a lot of sarcasm there. It allowed the minority to whip the majority, and so it has been in place since then. Now, the filibuster was allowed in previous years. And for example, John Quincy Adams successfully pulled off a filibuster in the House of Representatives, but he did it the old fashioned way. 

And if you’ve ever seen Mr. Smith goes to Washington, if you haven’t seen it, you ought to see it. That means you have to stand on the floor of the Senate and talk for so long till everybody else wears out that they give you what you want.

And so in the case of John Quincy Adams, who was so hardcore, antislavery, he just hated slavery. They’re going to annex Texas, Texas was its own independent republic. It wants to become part of the United States. And John Quincy Adams says, there’s no way you allow slavery in Texas, we don’t need more slavery in the United States. 

So at that point, John Quincy Adams stands up and he filibusters to keep Texas from becoming a state. And he does it so long and so well, that it’s a few years before they actually get it done that Texas does become a state.

So that old school filibustered, that’s fine, because that’s one person taking on the system, and you can vote them down if you want to, but nonetheless, that’s the real filibuster. So the way it occurs right now, is not the way the Constitution planned for the minority to run the majority. You know what?

If the people the United States voted the way that it appears they did, from based on what we know now that they chose, basically to put Democrats in the senate because we had a special election in Georgia where they could have stopped that, and if Georgia said, hey, here’s the two Republican senators, we want Democrat senators. 

A Heavy Dose Of the Dems Philosophy

Okay, If that’s what the people want, you’re about to get a heavy dose of what Democrat philosophy looks like at the national level. And if that’s what you asked for it, you know what, you need to be able to drink the drink that you mixed up and see if you really like the taste, or if you want to change in two years. So this is one thing where the Republicans refused to break that rule years ago and now it’s come back to bite them.

Rick:

A couple quick thoughts as we go to break, guys. I mean, David, you’ve always been consistent on this, no matter who was in office, you’ve been consistent that the filibuster was a bad idea. I completely agree with you on this. I think, it doesn’t allow the majority to do what they think is right and elections have consequences and not fixing your election laws in Georgia has consequences on those elections that then have consequences on policy.

So yeah, I mean, it’s another example of where Democrats, when they get power, they use it, they move the ball down the field. Republicans too often tend to twiddle their thumbs and say, we want to play nice, and we want to play all this good stuff, and everybody like us, and they don’t move the ball down the field like they should. So we should have gotten rid of the filibuster before. But now it looks like the Democrats may do it.

There’s a couple of democrat senators that are saying they may not support that, so we’ll see what happens. But from a philosophical perspective, from a constitutional perspective, Joe, the answer to your question is, yeah, it’s not constitutional. It’s not the way that it’s being implemented by the Senate right now. 

Mr. Smith Goes to Washington

I love what you just described, David, the whole, Jimmy Stewart, and Mr. Smith goes to Washington and actually, filibustering an individual, filibustering by talking. Now, that is cool and that should continue in the Senate, but not what they’re doing right now.

Quick, right, guys, we’ll be back. We got a lot of questions from folks, we’ll see how many we can get to today. You’re listening to WallBuilders Live, it’s Foundations of Freedom Thursday.

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Abraham Lincoln said. “We 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.”

A Moment from American History

This is Tim Barton from WallBuilders with another moment from American history. The Reverend James Caldwell was a famous minister during the American war for independence. His sermons taught liberty and God’s opposition to tyranny. The British hated him and tried to kill him. So for his own protection, he would actually take loaded pistols with him into the pulpit and lay them beside his Bible as he preached.

In the 1780 Battle of Springfield, the Americans ran out of wadding for their guns, which was like having no ammunition. Pastor Caldwell ran inside a nearby church and returned with an armload of watts hymnals, the pages of which would provide the much needed wadding. He took this great Bible based hymnal, raised it in the air, and shouted to the troops “now put watts into them, boys.” This pastors ingenuity save the day for the Americans.

For more information on pastor James Caldwell and other colonial patriots, go to wallbuilders.com.

Thomas Jefferson said, “The Constitution 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 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.”

What Does “Codify” Mean?

Rick:

We’re back here on WallBuilders Live. It’s Foundations of Freedom Thursday, and we do these Thursday programs where you get to ask the questions. So you may have a question on the founding, on something that’s happening in Washington DC right now, how the constitution works, whatever you got, send it to us radio@wallbuilders.com, radio@wallbuilders.com.

Next one comes from, I’m going to try to pronounce, oh, it’s Tara. Tara. I’ll just do the first name Tara or Tyra, however, she says that. And here’s the question. “I have seen that Biden is committed to codify Roe v. Wade, and that would guarantee a right to abortion, even if SCOTUS overturned the decision.” So that says Supreme Court. “Is this accurate? What does it mean to codify? How can they pass something against a Supreme Court decision?

Alright, guys, Roe v. Wade back on the table, what do we mean when we say codify a Supreme Court decision?

Tim:

Well, let me first clarify and say how can they pass something when we’re talking about the precedent in the Supreme Court? They don’t pass legislation. So codified would be a different phrase. But part of the question was, if they pass this, the only people that have the capacity to pass something is the Congress.

They pass laws, the President can sign it into law, the President can veto it. The Supreme Court can give their opinion of the constitutionality which by the way, that’s only one opinion from the three branches, because all three branches can give their own opinion. And if Congress has written a law, in their mind, that is a constitutional law.

What if Biden Codify’s Abortion?

Nonetheless, this is where there’s a lot of misunderstanding, because President and it doesn’t matter if it’s Joe Biden or anybody else, a president does not have the right and authority to make something like this law, just like the US Supreme Court didn’t have the authority back in 1973 to say abortion is now legal when it was not legal in many states, that was never a law that was passed. 

And so this is where there’s just kind of a big misunderstanding of the boundaries and the jurisdiction of these different branches of government. But I will now differ with this question of Joe Biden codifying abortion, making it long term or permanent in America.

David:

Now what happens with this is, Tim, you mentioned the 73 original decision. And what happened was judicial activism said, we’re going to rewrite the Constitution, we’re going to take away from the States their right to control moral issues, and we’re going to say that it’s okay to have abortion on demand at any point in pregnancy all the way up to the very end. And that’s the national policy. Well, they acted like a national legislature, they didn’t have the authority to do that.

But the Democrats have relied on that for decades, hey, that’s law of the land, there’s abortion on demand. And so this is what they rely on. They now fear that they’re about to lose that position. With the new Constitution minded Judges that have been appointed to judiciary and when the Supreme Court, they like the rest of us see that that’s about to be overturned. 

We’ve talked in previous programs, we think in the next three years that Roe v Wade will be overturned, that it will no longer be national policy, it will go back to the states and then states will determine what they do in each state, which is the way it was before Roe v. Wade.

The Dems are Afraid

So the Democrats are afraid that they’re going to lose forcing all states to have abortion. So what they want to do is just make that a federal law. That federal law would have no impact unless the Supreme Court actually overturns it, because the federal law is simply repeating what the Supreme Court has said in Roe v. Wade. So the fact they’re trying to codify it means that they think they’re about to lose Roe v. Wade at the court level. But here’s what happens.

Let’s say it becomes a federal law, it is then going into court on a 10th Amendment basis, absolutely guarantee that. I guarantee Texas Attorney General and a whole bunch of Attorney Generals will say wait a minute, this is a 10th Amendment issue. The 10th Amendment says that those things enumerated to the federal government, 17 things, that’s what the feds can do. Here’s what we the states can do. So this will end up in court. But let’s say that the Supreme Court…

Tim:

And let’s be even more specific, it says everything that’s not specifically enumerated to the federal government belongs to the states. So unless it’s one of those 17 things the Constitution says the federal government can do and by the way, those 17 things, you’ll find a lot of them in the first couple of articles.

But Article 1, Section 8, you’ll see a lot of those things, a few additional things in some of the Amendments that have been added to the Constitution. So if you look at the Constitution, which includes all of the 27 amendments, then you will find those 17 enumerated powers.

But the 10th Amendment says that those things not explicitly given to the federal government in this Constitution belong to the States. Well, there’s nothing mentioning abortion in the Constitution. Therefore, based on that understanding, abortion is not a federal issue.

A State’s-Rights Issue

It’s a state issue. Now, you also can make the argument that based on the Declaration of Independence, where that was the philosophy that led to the Constitution, where it talks about one of the inalienable rights is the right to life and government exists to protect our God given inalienable rights.

And so you can make a very strong argument that abortion should never be legal, even though you could argue to say it’s state’s right issue. It’s almost the same lines as arguing in the south where people wanted to say, well, wait a second slavery was a states’ rights issue. Yes, but it was violating the laws of God, which is what so many from the north argued, so many abolitionists argued.

Certainly, that is the argument, if you look at abortion is even though you could argue this is a state issue, not a federal government issue from original intent, philosophical and even biblical perspective, every state should be striking down abortion anyway.

David:

Yeah, that’s exactly right. It’s a law of nature and nature’s God, which is standard the Declaration set forth. But under the constitutional thing, where so many ignore the Declaration, let’s say that the Congress passes this law and says every state is going to have abortion demand, and they would pass that law after Roe v. Wade is reversed, so here come all these state attorneys general say no, you can’t do that, we challenge this new federal law.

Article Six

And let’s say that the courts for some strange reason, struck down the position to the states and said, no, the federal law stands, it trumps everything else under the supremacy clause, Article 6 in the Constitution, abortion demand is now the codified, that is the federal law of the land. Here’s the deal. If it’s a federal law of the land, it can be repealed by the very next Congress. And so this would bounce back and forth, who knows for decades, perhaps, with whichever party is in charge, and whether they’re prolife or not prolife, they would make that the policy for the nation.

So you conceivably could have hey, we’re a pro-abortion nation, no; we’re prolife nation, no; we’re pro-abortion, it could change every election. And so codifying something just means it makes it federal. But that doesn’t mean it stands forever. It stands until the next Congress comes in and wants to do something different if they do want to do something different.

Tim:

And guys, it’s probably worth pointing out, as we’ve already addressed, President Joe Biden has done so many executive orders, dad, I think you mentioned, it was up to 50, roughly. And looking at that, a lot of those executive orders have been undoing some of the Trump policy positions or some of Trump’s executive orders.

And this is why the codifying is not necessarily a long term fix, because the next administration can come in and overturn many of those policies. And so even though they’re saying they’re going to codify it, that doesn’t mean it’s here forever, the next administration can undo it, just like we are seeing Joe Biden undo many of the things that Trump did in his administration.

The American Story

Rick:

Alright, guys, we’re going to take a quick break, we’ll come back with more questions on this Foundations of Freedom Thursday. As we’re going to break, had to share a message we got from one of the folks that has our book, “The American Story” book, you guys just came out with this this last year.

And it says that they had purchased American story for their granddaughter, their granddaughters in high school that takes college credit classes through a public community college. And the granddaughter told her The American Story is on their reading list for their school, so they wanted to pass that along. Guys, that is very cool.

So that’s at a public community college where they’re using The American Story by David and Tim Barton. So they’re getting some truth, even at that community college. I just thought that was awesome, good news, folks. Hey, maybe you could teach a class. Maybe some of you need to go into education to be the teachers that bring in that kind of good truth in that education system. But just know, truth is being disseminated across the country. And you can help us do more of that by going to wallbuilderslive.com today, and making a contribution. We’ll be right back, you’re listening to WallBuilders Live.

President Calvin Coolidge said, “The more I study the Constitution, the more I realized 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.”

The Courageous Leaders Collection

Hi, friends, this is Tim Barton of WallBuilders. This is a time when most Americans don’t know much about American history or even heroes of the faith. And I know oftentimes for parents, we’re trying to find good content for our kids to read.

And if you remember back to the Bible, to the book of Hebrews, it has the faith Hall of Fame where they outline the leaders of faith that had gone before them. Well, this is something that as Americans, we really want to go back and outline some of these heroes, not just of American history, but heroes of Christianity and our faith as well.

I want to let you know about some biographical sketches we have available on our website. One is called The Courageous Leaders Collection. And this collection includes people like Abigail Adams, Abraham Lincoln, Francis Scott Key, George Washington Carver, Susanna Wesley, even the Wright brothers. And there’s a second collection called Heroes of History. In this collection, you’ll read about people like Benjamin Franklin or Christopher Columbus, Daniel Boone, George Washington, Harriet Tubman. Friends, the list goes on and on.

This is a great collection for your young person to have and read and it’s a providential view of American and Christian history. This is available at www.wallbuilders.com. That’s www.wallbuilders.com.

Nancy’s Crazy Rules

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

Rick:

We’re back here on WallBuilders Live, Foundations of Freedom Thursday today and the next question comes from Patrick. He said, “Good morning, Emanuel Cleaver, a house member can spew vile prayers but Nancy Pelosi can restrict the use of father, mother, son, and daughter. Please explain this to me if you’d be so kind. Thanks and God bless you.”

Yeah, guys. I mean, the statements true. We see that happening on the floor of our United States Congress. I don’t know how to explain this one.

Tim:

Well, it’s worth pointing out when we live in a culture that doesn’t know the difference between a man and a woman. We don’t know what genders are. We don’t even believe culturally that there is absolute moral truth. It’s not surprising that standard seems to fluctuate, that standard seem to change a lot.

And when you understand the way that government operates, and then each body being at the House and the Senate, they get to make up the rules upon which their body operates, it does give the leader of that body a lot of flexibility to come in and say, here’s how our body is going to operate. And certainly there are things that have to be approved by the body.

Nonetheless, it because of the cultural climate we live in, the lack of biblical morality, the lack of absolute truth and basic understanding, and then having people with a totally different ideology in charge, that’s to me the short answer how some of this comes. But I know there’s more details involved.

Jesus’ Golden Rule Vs. Political Golden Rule

David:

Well, I would say this is a perfect reflection of the political golden rule. And you know, the golden rule from Jesus is you do to others what you would want them to do to you. But the political golden rule is a little bit different. And it says he who has the gold makes the rules. And in this case, Pelosi has the gold.

She’s the one who’s in charge the entire house, and Tim, as you just pointed out, she can make the rules. Because the majority of House members chose her to run the House. They agreed with her philosophy, agree with where she is, she made this rule. They’re not objecting to it, they’re not voting it down. This is what they’ve agreed to.

Now, this certainly is not consistent with what you would see with different leaders. But this is what, Tim, you were just talking about between Biden and Trump. Trump had all these prolife orders. Well, Biden has come in and reversed all those orders. And those 50 executive orders issued by Joe Biden, in just the first couple weeks, that’s largely reversing what Trump did. So this is why elections do matter and they do have consequences.

And they don’t matter just in the big things, although they do, I mean, you watch and see what happens to the price of gasoline, see what happens to the stock market, see what happens, there’s so many things. It’s even in which pronouns or whether you can use pronouns at the House level. That’s tedious. Who cares about that? Well, again, it’s part of a worldview.

What Did He Say?!

So what you’re saying now is there is no gender? Well, yeah, there is. Check nature out. Check textbooks out.

There is no gender and we’re not going to allow you to try to recognize gender. That is a political philosophy. And that goes back to what we’re told way back in Proverbs 14:34, that when the righteous rule, the people rejoice; when the wicked rule, the people groan.

And man, there’s so many eye rolls on this. Just like what Patrick asked in this question, how can you have Emanuel Cleaver pray the kind of prayer he prayed?

If you haven’t heard that prayer, just do a quick web search, and that prayer will pull up and you’re going, oh, my gosh, that was prayed in a House of Representatives? Yeah, look at what he did, and he is a recognized ordained minister in a denomination.

And you’re looking at that, and I guarantee you that is not what the chaplain the house would have prayed. Daniel Conroy, that’s not his viewpoint. But nonetheless, if you’re the Speaker of the House, you can have influence on who prays and how they pray and how they open prayers. And the same thing with whether pronouns will even be used on the House floor.

Imagine that trying to have a debate, and here’s Pelosi saying on the rules of the House, you cannot mention a pronoun of any kind that distinguishes gender, I think there’s going to be a whole lot that ignore that. As a matter of fact, she ignored herself when she had a press conference talked about how so proud she was to be a mother and a grandmother and wife and etc.

Knowing the Rules

Those are all gender pronouns. So she doesn’t even keep her own rules well. But that’s how it happens is elections do have consequences and the people in charge get to make the rules when you get to the political level. And that’s what we see here.

Rick:

Well, it’s one of the reasons we need to know the rules. You know, you’ve mentioned this so many times, David, just the fact that the left tends to pay attention to procedure. They’re ready to outmaneuver us, because we just don’t want to get bogged down in that kind of stuff.

We do like to talk about principles and values, but we don’t talk about process enough. We try to do that here on WallBuilders Live, we want to encourage other people to do the same thing. It’s actually the whole reason we have Foundations of Freedom Thursday, is to learn the process, learn the rules.

There’s a reason the founders chose a constitutional republic so that the rules would be in writing, so that we would know what the rules to play the game are. You know, when you go play a sport, if there were no rules, like our friend, Ken Ivory says, if there were no sidelines, no hash marks, on the football field, how would you know when you’re scoring, how would you know when you’re out of bounds, when you got a first down?

I mean, that’s what tends to happen when we move away from the written rules of the Constitution. And unfortunately, we’re kind of in no man’s land right now where people are making it up as they go.

The Filibuster, Gender Terms, And More – On Foundations Of Freedom

And so we have to know the rules, first. It starts with us. We, the people, we’re in charge. And so if we know the rules, if we learn those things, we can hold our elected officials accountable. Hopefully, you can run for office and be one of the people in office that knows procedure and knows the rules and fights for those things. We just need more people to do that and you can be one of those people. We want to help equip you as well.

We challenge you to start one of our biblical citizenship classes in your home, at your church. Have an opportunity to get together on a weekly basis and sit around and talk about these topics. Learn what a biblical perspective is of how to be a good citizen. Learn how our constitution works. And learn what we can do to be responsible, simply to as David says in that series, to tend the garden. So you can check that out of biblicalcitizens.com.

We give it away for free. So get signed up today and start hosting a class tomorrow. I mean, don’t wait, now is the time. It will give you hope. You’ll give other people hope. You’ll be encouraged. The fellowship is good. There’s just so many positive things I can tell you about it just based on what we hear back from people that are hosting these classes. So biblicalcitizens.com is the website, get signed up today and be a part of it.

While you’re online, go to wallbuilderslive.com and make your contribution, one-time or monthly. We appreciate you going on there and supporting us coming alongside us with your financial contributions. The class’s free at biblicalcitizens.com, but you can make a donation at wallbuilderslive.com and that helps us to continue to do more classes like that and more programs like this. Thanks so much for listening to WallBuilders Live.

Samuel Adams said, “The liberties of our country and the freedom of our civil constitution are worth defending against all hazards; and it is our duty to defend them against all attacks.”