Pollak: On Constitution Day, A Founding Document Under Attack
By: Joel B. Pollak
September 17, 2022: Joe Biden chose the birthplace of the Constitution as the setting for his speech Sep. 1 attacking “MAGA Republicans” as “a threat to this country.”
He sought to invoke the principles of the Founding against his political opposition. Instead, with Independence Hall bathed in an eerie red light, he desecrated the founding document of the country by marshaling the power of the presidency and the executive branch against a broad section of the people and their representatives in the government. Bad enough that Biden’s party has spent the past several years trashing the Constitution as an irredeemably flawed document, the product of the “original sin” of slavery.
According to the tenets of Critical Race Theory, that means the whole of America is tainted by “systemic racism,” a problem that only massive redistribution of resources can resolve. (Those who criticize that theory and object to its teaching in our schools are cast by the White House and Department of Justice as domestic terrorists.)
Biden gave his entire Inaugural Address about “unity,” but what he meant was uniting the remainder of the country against Donald Trump and those who might support him and his policies. That represents tens of millions of voters and the bulk of the Republican Party. “Unity,” as such, is to be forged among the various factions of the left, together with the rump Never Trump clique that is center-left at best, and which is committed to Republican defeat just as fervently as the Democrats are.
Republicans are lumped together with the violent extremists of the right — a genuine danger to public safety, to be sure, but hardly a unique one. Democrats cheered as the country exploded into unrest in the summer of 2020, and not for the first time.
While Biden mumbled belated and perfunctory condemnations of the violence, his running mate bailed out rioters and joined the mob outside the White House, which had attacked police and nearly chased Trump from the building only hours before.
What Biden forgot, or omitted, was that the Constitution was the product of compromise in Philadelphia. Most of its best-known imperfections were the result of deals that allowed the slave-owning states to participate in the Union.
They were regrettable, but without those compromises, there never would have been a Union. The founding documents of the country were not a curse that marred its subsequent development; rather, they contained the seeds of America’s eventual salvation.
Biden knows that; hence his refrain, on the campaign trail and in office, that “America is an idea” that we have never quite lived up to, but which we have approached more closely over time. What he and his party fail to understand is what such an idea requires if it is to survive the pressures and strains of an unequal, diverse, and often chaotic society. The rights of the individual must be upheld as sacred; the checks and balances of the government must be maintained to prevent abuses.
Since the rise of Barack Obama, the Democratic Party has conducted an unprecedented assault on the ideas at the heart of the Constitution.
With Obamacare, Obama expanded the power of the federal government to control the life-and-death decisions of millions of Americans; with the Iran deal, he eviscerated the power of the Senate in foreign policy; in attacking Libya, he mocked the unique war powers of the House. He even attacked the Supreme Court’s centuries-old power of judicial review.
Biden has now weaponized the Department of Justice to persecute his rivals; his allies in Congress trample due process; and he uses the bully pulpit literally, not figuratively, to bully the opposition.
Democrats attack the Supreme Court and protest — illegally — in front of the homes of justices, over a “right” to abortion that was never in the text. Many vow to eliminate the Senate filibuster — not a constitutional power, but a procedural one that preserves the Senate’s moderating constitutional role. When the Constitution was signed by 39 delegates in Philadelphia, they knew that the path to ratification would be difficult, and the task of implementation even more daunting. Factional and partisan rivalries the Framers had hoped to avoid emerged almost immediately; there were accusations of sedition and treason far more serious than those flung about today by talking heads on cable news panels. Ultimately, the Constitution failed to hold the country together; only the Civil War restored it.
We are not on the precipice of a civil war — though an increasing number of Americans are inclined to believe that we are. Rather, we are in real danger of losing the essence of our Constitution — individual liberty, plus checks-and-balances. And Democrats are deliberately destroying the spirit of tolerance necessary for the system to stay intact, the implicit fellowship implied in “We, the People.”
On this, the 235th anniversary of Constitution Day, that is the greatest threat to our country.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the recent e-book, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election. His recent book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.
Source: Breitbart News