Reportedly Ben Franklin was asked after the Constitutional Convention of 1787: "Well, Doctor, What have we got--a Republic or a Monarchy?" Franklin was to have replied: "A Republic, if you can keep it." It is in this spirit that Pat and Kate Scopelliti, authors of America First - The MAGA Manifesto: A Handbook for the 2018 Midterms and Beyond, put forth their message in this second of twelve installments. They make the case that keeping our Republic means maintaining equal justice under the law. They also argue that voting "MAGA" in November will help maintain the equality of all people under US law.
More information about Pat and Kate Scopelliti’s book, America First - The MAGA Manifesto: A Handbook for the 2018 Midterms and Beyond is available here. The Foreword was written by LTG (Retired) Michael T. Flynn.
Enjoy--and be swayed--by their second installment!
Rule of Law
Equal Justice Under the Law?
America no longer provides her citizens with universal, equal justice under the Rule of Law. Period. There's simply no way to couch that statement, no way to make it more palatable or argue that it’s untrue. The very idea that gave birth to our nation is today, and every day, being trampled to dust, readily swept up, and dumped into the dustbin of our history.
It is more than likely that you, too, experience a gut-wrenching feeling as you read the news online, watch TV nightly news or turn on your car radio during your commute to work. Perhaps you are as angry and disgusted by what you are seeing and hearing as we are.
We are bombarded non-stop with fake news. We are forced to financially support politically motivated prosecutions that know no limit in time, scale, scope or resources expended. We witness our duly elected President being accused of non-existent crimes in the obvious attempt to subvert a legal election.
The vicious attacks actually began before President Trump's stunning victory and escalated once he was sworn into office. And for nearly two years now the Democrats (and some establishment Republicans!) have engaged their corrupt powers to obliterate him and his administration with outright lies and clandestine crimes.
On the other hand, crystal clear criminal violations, violent protests, public harassment of administration employees, and enterprises established by crooked politicians to circumvent or defy the law while lining their personal pockets, remain powerfully protected. Blatant wrongdoing by the political elite is ignored. These Swamp dwellers continue to operate above the law. No legal action taken. No justice served.
Worst of all is when the very institutions of law enforcement are, from their top leadership, corrupted into the very entities employed to protect the guilty and attack the innocent.
In the United States of America, the law of the land – our Constitution – establishes the procedure for electing the president, through the electoral college, not the popular vote. Yet the Democrats refuse to accept their election loss despite President Trump's overwhelming win by 74 electoral college votes: 306 to 232. They denigrate, disavow, damage, and ultimately, are hell-bent on destroying this President and the beneficial changes he has brought about during his 21 months in office.
America’s Original #WalkAway Campaign
One of the most fundamental points President Trump stands for is the once well-known notion that America is a nation founded on an idea.
This idea is best described in three words: Rule of Law. Let's take a moment to contemplate the true roots of America’s greatness. The following 35 words from the Declaration of Independence express the foundation of all our legal values:
We hold these truths to be self-evident:
that all men are created equal
that they are endowed by their Creator
with certain unalienable Rights
that among these are Life
and the pursuit of Happiness
These 35 words embody the idea of America. When we rebelled against and ultimately broke away from the British empire, it was due to their unwillingness to recognize and govern in respect of the equal rights we knew were ours to claim. This was the original American #WalkAway Campaign!
The law, as it was applied to British citizens, was written by their elected representatives to House of Commons, who had to face those same citizens when they returned from London at the conclusion of each Parliamentary session. But, here in the colonies, laws determining our lives and liberties were written in Parliament and approved by King George III. We had no representation, thus no ability to affect who wrote the laws, and thereby no recourse.
British Rule of Law was unequally and disproportionately applied. For example, a poor person stealing a loaf of bread might be hanged, whereas the rich and mighty could break any number of laws and face a fine that might be suspended before even being imposed. Equality before the law requires that equal crimes generate equal punishments and that no person is granted special immunity where others face unfair and disproportionate risk of their liberty. It must be understood that this sort of inequality before the law had been the way of the world for all of history prior to the founding of America.
What, then, is this uniquely American definition of law, exactly? The next 20 words in the Declaration of Independence lay down the basis for answering that question.
That to secure these rights
Governments are instituted among Men
deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed
Law is that set of practices necessary to secure our rights, which by our consent, we empower our government to perform. To understand the very idea of the Rule of Law, you must first clearly comprehend these concepts. When you respect someone else’s right to the pursuit of happiness, their rights to liberty and life, you are engaging virtuous behavior. Virtue is the basis of law. And the law is, again, nothing more than the structure necessary for every individual's rights to be safely protected.
We must ensure that our equal and virtuous rights are forever the cornerstones of all lawmaking. All members of our military services take an oath to protect our rights with their very lives. Voting, in every election, is the action we civilians must faithfully take to place in power those who will truly represent us, who will create laws representative of the ideals so beautifully and powerfully expressed in the Declaration above.
For the purpose of clarification, here is just a single example of today’s flagrant repudiation of the Rule of Law – Legal vs Illegal immigration. What possible justification is there for supporting illegal immigration? The rationale is obvious. No one is easier to exploit. You can require slave labor advantages over illegal immigrants by threatening to report them to any legal authority. The savings on overtime, healthcare and other benefits, and the costs of creating OSHA compliant working conditions explode your profits. And you can pretend to support them all the while using them in your duplicitous scheme to hold power.
When your political power and party destiny, not to mention your purse, demand a constant inflow of just such illegal immigrants, what do you do? You attack the very basis of the law itself, of course! The current attack on immigration law is so outrageous that arguments are made in support of protecting illegal alien members of the treacherous MS13 gang from immigration law enforcement so that they can remain and continue their mayhem! Laws – like Kate’s Law, requiring stiff penalties for illegal immigrants who commit violent felonies – cannot be passed in Congress. Young Americans, like Mollie Tibbitts, are stalked and murdered, but we are admonished by the left not to rush to judgment. Incredible, distorted logic!
What you see happening is an attempt to extinguish the Rule of Law in America. Law and the application of it are under intense attack and American citizens are absolutely at risk, as is our nation itself.
The Consent of the Governed
And that brings us to the last component of the words above, which is also the most important. The consent of the governed. Many people have no idea what consent means, nor how it is civically expressed. On election day, if you go to work and then go home, and never make it to the polling booth, then you have just consented to whatever outcome occurs.
How is non-consent expressed? Obviously, you must find representatives who WILL live up to the name. You must vote IN representatives who actually represent you. You must vote OUT representatives who fail to represent you. This requires knowledge of your federal government and its power structure. It requires study, thought, and conversation with those who feel as you do. What is called for now, is a continuation of the reawakening of the spirit of 1776, which led to victory in 2016. Common Sense America knows how to stand up and speak, by the power of the voting booth.
The ultimate meaning of the Rule of Law is that We The People control who writes the laws in America. We are 100% responsible for the state of the law in our nation. If we wish to Make America Great Again, it is our duty as citizens and patriots to elect representatives who will write the laws we want to live by – and take the laws we do NOT want off the books!
Where we ask, does one turn today for this vision of the law, for its contribution to Making America Great Again? We propose that as you come to know the MAGA Movement, you will find that President Trump speaks what our hearts long for. Within the beating heart and soul of Common Sense America lies the passionate belief in and desire for ALL citizens to enjoy equal protection under Rule of Law.
Many thanks to author and constitutional attorney David Shestokas. His book, Creating the Declaration of Independence was an invaluable source of inspiration for the analysis presented above. And, you can read his extraordinary review of our book, here:
Review of America First: The MAGA Manifesto