Today is Constitution Day. In his commentary for the Washington Times, Dr. Ben Carson discusses how Americans can improve their "constitutional literacy."
Ben Carson --- The Washington Times
Earlier this summer, I managed to perplex, perhaps even offend, a famous TV interviewer when I declared I wanted a federal government that followed the U.S. Constitution. Seemingly aghast, the interviewer went so far as to suggest my position was a “highly charged thing to say.”
Imagine that. A journalist who, owing to the Constitution, has the right to report freely and to speak freely, being uncomfortable to hear a fellow American swear allegiance to the Constitution and the Founding Fathers’ vision of a limited central government.
I fear we as a nation have drifted too far away from an understanding and appreciation of the greatest governance document the world has ever produced. We have a president today who usurps power never given to him in the Constitution, a dysfunctional Congress so gridlocked that it can’t fulfill its mission as a separate-but-equal branch of government, and a Fourth Estate of media elites who cheerlead for a bigger, more intrusive government that unnecessarily addicts those struggling to escape poverty to handouts, rather than encouraging self-reliance.
Let me be clear. Rightly sized and empowered, government serves an excellent purpose. Our Founding Fathers knew that and created a perfect vision for a republic of independent states protected and served by a central federal government with strong checks and balances. Those checks on powers were essential to the Framers, who wanted to make sure three equal but separate branches would ensure we always had a government “of the people, for the people and by the people,” as Abraham Lincoln once so wisely said.
Today we have people who are simply overgoverned, subjected to taxation, regulation and intrusions by a massive federal government that our Founding Fathers would never have tolerated. It wants to control what we eat, how we live and even how much we can earn. It values political correctness over freedom, co-dependency over self-reliance and redistribution of wealth over personal success.