Wednesday, Nov 26, 2014

Myers: Pillars of Americanism under attack


Freedom and opportunity are the greatest incentives for encouraging people to come to the United States. No other country in history has opened its gates to people from all over the world who were willing to take advantage of these two primary aspects of Americanism. Early immigrants lived mostly in enclaves with people from their native countries and demanded their children speak English and truly become Americans. That type of thinking served us well for years. It is only in the recent past that some immigrants refuse to assimilate into our society. To add to this difficulty, they desire to retain many of the facets of their native countries and cultures. If it was so good in their native countries then why come here?

❖ ❖ ❖

It is bad enough that freedom and opportunity are being squandered by some of these new immigrants, but these pillars of Americanism are under attack by our own government. Our constitution is a limiting document on government, especially the Bill of Rights. The founding fathers were extremely educated and intelligent. They had studied prior governments in an effort to create a document that would prevent a government from becoming too powerful. The checks and balances by the three branches of government was a key element. They have served us well, but now seem to be faltering.

Not enforcing certain laws because one does not agree with them is in violation of the oath of office. That in effect is rewriting laws and is not legal. Only Congress has authority to write laws and it is the president’s responsibility to enforce them. The U.S. Supreme Court determines if the laws are within the realm of the Constitution. Therein lies the “checks and balances” as defined by the founding fathers and written into the constitution.

❖ ❖ ❖

Seizing private property by the government in order to increase revenue to the government was not envisioned by the founders and they made arrangements in the Constitution to prevent it. Unfortunately our Supreme Court thought otherwise in a couple of instances, thus reducing our freedom. The EPA has continued to issue more and more regulations that restrict the freedoms of businesses and individuals. In some cases it dramatically reduces the value of personal property or the ability of property owners to freely use their property.

The ability of individuals to start businesses dramatically has been reduced because of the myriad regulations associated with the process. Our Congress continues to write laws that are over 2,000 pages with references to other laws so that it is almost impossible to understand what is being done. To make matters worse, most of Congress does not read the law before it is enacted. Obamacare and the Dodd-Frank Act are two of the latest examples of huge bills that are having a significant effect on our country — the former on our health care system and the latter on our financial system. Each of these dramatically reduces our freedom and opportunity. Compare these to our Declaration of Independence and our Constitution — two documents that made sense and could be understood.

Donald Myers is a retired Marine Colonel and regular contributor to Hernando Today. He can be reached at


Part of the Tribune family of products