‘If You Can Keep It’: America’s Foundation Is Crumbling but Not Lost

Pride Month is once again upon us — that special time of the year when governments, corporations, and seemingly every major institution band together to noxiously celebrate the chief of all sins, as well as a whole legion of sexual perversions, degeneracies, and aberrations.

As absolutely everything about it makes clear, Pride Month is not a matter of fostering tolerance nor even a misguided notion of affection for a marginalized minority (the very claim that the LGBT crowd is “marginalized” puts to shame even the most egregious cases of George Orwell’s “doublespeak”) but rather of insufferably demanding submission to grave depravity and psychologically browbeating the masses into accepting as “normal” that which is diabolically deviant. From leather bondage gear and public nudity at Pride parades to the mutilation of children’s genitals in surgical theaters, the accoutrements of Pride Month would have appalled generations past.

The top-down adoration of the LGBT agenda (for, of course, Pride Month is not a grassroots achievement but an innovation of the elite) is symptomatic of the decadence of America. Nigh-unfettered immigration pouring millions of third-world denizens across the border, rampantly rising lawlessness seeping out of urban hellscapes, the debilitating decline of both marriage and birth rates plaguing society, the stentorian campaign to slaughter untold thousands of unborn children, and the more recent corruption and subversion of the justice system to target lawful political figures like former President Donald Trump are also indicative of the impending demise of the Land of the Free.

While many on the political, social, and cultural Left like to hypothesize that America’s Constitution is out of date, designed uniquely for a people who lived and labored over 200 years ago and thus in need of revisions and updates according to modern standards, that is by no means the case. Certainly, America’s Founding Fathers likely never imagined the nightmare scenario of “doctors” chopping off the healthy breasts of teenage girls and the healthy penises of adolescent boys, blithely calling the whole barbaric affair “lifesaving,” but they were far from ignorant of degeneracy. Those on the Left pretend that the Founders never imagined or possibly foresaw the advent of such things as pornography, abortion, or the LGBT agenda.

Certainly, it is difficult to imagine the Founding Fathers sitting around their desks in Philadelphia, New York City, or Annapolis, Maryland and discussing whether or not there would be a time when “doctors” would cut off adolescent children’s sex organs, but the provisions they placed in the Constitution were intended to prevent such nightmares from ever becoming reality — by addressing the principles which could either prevent or permit such nightmares. But those principles rested upon and rest upon still certain conditions. When asked in 1787 what kind of government the Constitutional Convention had agreed upon for the fledgling American nation, Benjamin Franklin famously answered, “A republic, if you can keep it.”

We have not kept it. But we can perhaps reclaim it. Franklin himself intimated how. In a speech before that Continental Convention on September 17, 1787, the scientist-turned-statesman proclaimed:

“I think a General Government necessary for us, and there is no form of government, but what may be a blessing to the people if well administered; and [I] believe further, that this is likely to be well administered for a course of years, and can only end in despotism, as other forms have done before it, when the people shall become so corrupted as to need despotic government.”

At the time, Franklin was nominally addressing the Convention’s president, the legendary George Washington. But the content of his speech was directed to three delegates present who expressed doubts about the form of government which their colleagues were crafting. In earnestly encouraging his fellow Americans to sign the Constitution, Franklin wisely observed that while other forms of government may devolve into despotism at one man’s whim, the American government was structured in such a way that only the will of the people could corrupt it. Franklin’s fellow Founder and America’s first Vice President John Adams put it more pointedly when he said, “Our [C]onstitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”

America was once comprised of a moral and religious people, but no longer. Now, Pride Month is close to becoming a state-mandated religious observance, child sacrifice via abortion is a protected anti-sacrament across numerous states, drag queens preach the gospel of gay to children, the rank stench of marijuana hangs over most major metropolitan centers, the soul-sucking scourge of pornography is available at the click of a button on every cell phone and laptop, heartless hookup culture and DIY prostitution have their own trending apps, and all manner of godlessness is accepted and touted in the public square while Christianity is ostracized and shushed. This is the present state of the people.

Is it any wonder then that the American government — of those people, by those people, and for those people — is hurtling headlong into the very despotism that the Founders warned against? The Justice Department is abdicating its duty to the virtue it is named for and targeting pro-life Americans for the crime of standing up for the unborn; courts award government-run schools carte blanche to secretly transgenderify children, leaving American moms and dads in the dark; government “health” agencies commit fraud against the American people to bolster pharmaceutical sales; the legitimacy of authorities is smeared and castigated in pursuit of radical, unamerican agendas; and the dominant political party shields its own when the law is broken and just as wantonly breaks the law in persecuting its political opponents.

In establishing the American republic, the Founding Fathers also articulated how to reclaim it: morality and religion. The American government was, in fact, predicated upon morality and virtue, as the writings of the Founders evince — America’s foundation is morality and religion. This was not a novel concept, nor singularly unique to the new American government. The Founders were no simpletons: they were well-read men with a profound depth and breadth of knowledge of history and philosophy. Many of the Founders had enjoyed classical educations in the Christian West and were thus familiar with the most significant works of the ancient Greeks and Romans, as well as the Bible and the writings of Christian saints and heroes over the previous centuries. All of these sources upheld virtue as a necessary prerequisite for a functioning society.

Greco-Roman political philosophy, shaped by men like Plato and Aristotle, Cicero, and Marcus Aurelius, considered virtue paramount and even fundamental to the city, state, nation, and empire. These pagan ideas were perfected upon by Christian thought. In his voluminous treatise “The City of God,” penned shortly after the Sack of Rome, Augustine of Hippo concluded that for any earthly nation to survive and eventually thrive, its people must be virtuous, as are the citizens of the Heavenly City. Almost 1,400 years later, Franklin’s speech before the Continental Convention closely echoed Augustine when the saint wrote:

“In this world, therefore, the dominion of good men is profitable, not so much for themselves as for human affairs. But the dominion of bad men is hurtful chiefly to themselves who rule, for they destroy their own souls by greater license in wickedness; while those who are put under them in service are not hurt except by their own iniquity. For to the just all the evils imposed on them by unjust rulers are not the punishment of crime, but the test of virtue. Therefore the good man, although he is a slave, is free; but the bad man, even if he reigns, is a slave, and that not of one man, but, what is far more grievous, of as many masters as he has vices; of which vices when the divine Scripture [2 Peter 2:19] treats, it says, ‘For of whom any man is overcome, to the same he is also the bond-slave.’”

Indeed, Augustine’s words perfect upon not only the philosophy of the pagan Greeks and Romans, but even upon the American ideals of Franklin and his fellow Founders.

Sadly, as the rampant degeneracy and lawlessness of today make clear, we have not kept the republic given to us by the Founders, the foundations of America are crumbling — but we can reclaim the republic, we can restore the foundation upon which America rests. To do so, we must mount a crusade of virtue, we must model ourselves after the citizens of Heaven, we must become again a moral and religious people.

We may very well, as Augustine warned and as our Founders themselves experienced, live for a time under the rule of the unjust, of the vicious and licentious, but if we keep our eyes fixed upon God and the Heavenly City, such trials will serve as “the test of virtue” and will become for us a strength. The nation is not lost, so long as we keep alive virtue in our hearts.

AUTHOR

S.A. McCarthy

S.A. McCarthy serves as a news writer at The Washington Stand.

RELATED VIDEO: It’s Not a Republic. We Couldn’t Keep It. | TIPPING POINT

EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2024 Family Research Council.


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