IN GOD WE TRUST

The Pitched Battle for the Soul of America!

Copyright � 2007 Victor Shane, all rights reserved

 

 

 

THE AMERICAN MILITARY

 

America’s Founders believed that man was created in the image of God, endowed with unalienable rights and invested with absolute values worth defending. Contrariwise the liberal left believes man to be a product of random processes in a meaningless universe in which he creates his own relative values.

 

Why does the liberal left take such a dim view of those who embrace monotheism, or continue to believe in absolutes such as the God of the Bible? The argument is plausible enough and might go something like this:

 

People who believe in absolutes such as “God” end up believing that they have right on their side, and people who believe that they have right on their side, can do horrendous things! Belief in any sort of absolute must be discouraged at all costs because it fosters intolerance, prejudice and injustice.

 

This is why the doctrine of political correctness is duty-bound to deny the existence of an absolute Creator—supposedly to avoid all the hurt feelings, intolerances, prejudices, oppressions, injustices, conflicts, wars, sorrows and miseries that result from beliefs in absolutes.

 

This, incidentally, is also the reason why the liberal left harbors so much contempt for the American military. If all values were relative, if all truth claims were equally valid, if reality was observer-dependent, if good and evil were situational, if right and wrong depended on one’s point of view, then there would be no absolute values to preserve, protect, defend or die for—one man’s “terrorist” would be another man’s “freedom fighter,” depending on one’s point of view.

 

On the face of it, at least, the worldview of the left provides a plausible argument in favor of a more liberal consensus in which there is no God, there are no absolutes, there is nothing to foster intolerance, nothing to produce injustice, nothing to hurt people’s feelings, no heaven or hell to lose sleep over, nothing to kill or die for, no religions, no nation states, no borders, no boundaries, nothing to divide the world—just “people living life in peace” (to paraphrase the words of John Lennon’s pacifist anthem, Imagine). A plausible solution to the world’s ills? The problem is that it doesn’t work! And the reason it doesn’t work is because it doesn’t deal with the root cause of the world’s ills—human nature.

 

In that the men and women of our Armed Forces are willing to put their lives on the line to preserve, protect and defend something invested with absolute value, they are defying the rudiments of political correctness. In that the very existence of the American military presupposes absolutes, our men and women in uniform stand in defiance of the foundational principles of the liberal left. It should therefore come as no surprise to find those on the left secretly despising the American military.

 

 

 

HERITAGE OF FAITH:

LEGACY OF FREEDOM

 

History has seen many conventional armies come and go, driven by compulsion, marching in step, doing obeisance to Caesar, Emperor, Tzar and King, making an outward show of obedience, mindful of their taskmasters' whips. The Armed Forces of the United States, however, are in many respects unique in that they are made up of free men and women, marching voluntarily and without compulsion, answering to a higher authority than that of mortal man, invested of a most unconventional spiritual discipline. And they are all the more unique in that they are sworn to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States. But what’s so special about the Constitution of the United States?

 

It is said that reality is the greatest tutor. The Founders of America had just such a tutor. They themselves had just escaped from the yoke of European oppression, religious and otherwise. They were privy to the weaknesses and failures of various forms of government. They had seen human authority vaunt itself upon the head of humanity. They had seen government bear false witness against its own subjects. They had seen the state become the accuser of its citizens and a contractor of forced labor. They did not need to go rummaging through the rotten parchments of history to see all of this. They saw it with their own eyes, in their own time.

 

We might say that in most respects America’s Founders sought a discharge from the involuntary dependency of the people on the amateur providences of the state, knowing such dependency to be the greatest asset of tyrants. Beginning with their Declaration of Independence, they gave the primacy to the Creator, and relative subordinacy to the created state, thereby removing the God-given rights of man beyond the reach and control of Caesars, Czars, kings, princes, pashas, despots and tyrants.

 

America’s Founders knew unrestrained power to be food unto evil, and they understood that evil, searching for its food, invariably finds it in the institution of government. Familiar with the strengths and weaknesses of various forms of government, they chose a rule of constitutional law administered by duly elected representatives, instituting redundant measures to deny the derivative state footholds, handholds and strangleholds on the lives and fortunes of the people.

 

By dividing power among three equal branches of government, America’s Founders prevented the unlimited deposit of power in one place. By dividing Congress into two houses, they saw to it that no single group or cabal could make laws binding on the whole nation. By defining authority in government to be lawful only when delegated by the people, and by incorporating into the framework of government redundant checks, balances and provisions of disclosure and accountability, they succeeded in further safeguarding the rights of the people.

 

By all that they incorporated into the framework of the new government America’s Founders succeeded in binding down the hands of the derivative state from mischief, by the chains of the Constitution. And we see that the result of their labor has been productive of good and enduring fruit of every description. For we see here in recorded history the first real and concrete departure from the former ways of wholesale ruin and extinction. Not a brief departure occasioned by happenstance, compulsion, violence, force, mischief and anarchy; not a chance departure based on wishful thinking, vain philosophy, pious folly and noble vanity; but a concrete departure, signed, sealed and ratified in a Constitution and a Bill of Rights affording a legacy of enduring liberty unto future generations.

 

All of this, America’s Founders succeeded in accomplishing, first by giving the primacy to the Creator, second by declaring all men to be created equal, and third by rendering the state the servant and protector of those unalienable rights that make all of God’s children equal in His sight.

 

What then shall we say about the Constitution and Bill of Rights, documents that were drawn up to safeguard the unalienable gifts equally bestowed on all men by their Creator? Suffice it to say that miracles such as these do not cluster, neither do they grow on trees. In all the annals of body politic there shall not be found a death blow more severely delivered into the ribcage of the idol that has been competing against the labor of man and seeking to deprive him of the dignity of his origins than the one found in these documents.

 

And what value shall we place on a heritage such as this? Is it something to be taken for granted? Is it something to be squandered for a scant fare of bread and water? Nay, it is something well worth defending! It is something that Americans have fought to preserve, protect and defend since the inception of the Republic. Even today, it is something that Americans will join ranks to preserve, protect and defend with their very lives.

 

Although contemporary Americans may at times be confused by the welter of change going on in the world today, or at times be overwhelmed by the urgent needs of daily living, we are persuaded that through it all they are not unmindful of their heritage of freedom, nor ungrateful to God for the unalienable rights that He has bestowed on themselves and their children. Be they of Native American descent, or Anglo Saxon descent, or African descent, or Hispanic descent, or Armenian descent, or Irish descent, or Italian descent, or Jewish descent, or German descent, or Polish descent, or Hungarian descent, or Greek descent, or Scandinavian descent, or Russian descent, or Arab descent, or Lebanese descent, or Turkish descent, or Philippine descent, or Japanese descent, or Korean descent, or Chinese descent, or any other descent, true Americans will, in a moment of need, put away their differences, answer the call, enlist in the Armed Forces and close ranks to defend the Constitution of the United States—and the God-given liberty of man—with their very lives.

 

Freedom is not free, and neither does it grow on trees in a derivative world such as this. The price we pay for freedom is dear indeed, and it has been paid time and time again by the American defender of liberty, whose name and fame is well-known throughout the world, whose resolve, fortitude, discipline and courage was the subject of General Douglas MacArthur’s farewell speech at West Point Military Academy in 1962.1

 

A TRIBUTE TO

THE AMERICAN DEFENDER OF LIBERTY

Who was the American defender of liberty? He was in all respects an ordinary citizen, in just cause stirred to extraordinary effort. A teacher from Cleveland. A bus driver from Fresno. A farmer from Boise. An appliance repairman from Detroit. A housewife from San Diego. A doctor from Minneapolis. An auto mechanic from Houston. A chemist from Albuquerque. A salesman from Galveston. Against storms of advancing tanks, against hails of artillery shells, against blizzards of machinegun fire, against Blitzkriegs, Kamikaze attacks and suicide bombers, he earned an everlasting reputation for himself. In hundreds of campaigns, on a thousand battlefields, and around ten thousand campfires, he drained deep the bitter cup of war.

 

In the staggering columns of the first World War, slogging ankle deep through winter’s mud, blue-lipped and frost-bitten. In the filth of murky foxholes, and in the slime of dripping dugouts. In the horror of stricken areas of war. In the bitterness of long separation from loved ones back home. Against all odds, against hell and high water, against the chords of Sheol and the torrents of Perdition, he put his hand to the plow and never looked back.

 

In B-24 Liberators, over the inferno of Ploesti. In B-17 Flying Fortresses, on perilous daylight precision bombing runs over the submarine pens of Wilhelmshaven, easy pickings for German fighters. On August 17th, 1943, 376 Flying Fortresses took off from airfields in England; 60 of them, with crews of 10 each, did not return. And those that did return told harrowing tales, tales of “flak so thick, you could get out and walk on it.”

 

 

 

 

All eyes nervously peeled to the skies in the Flying Fortress Memphis Belle. Caliber 50 machine guns echeloned to the right and to the left, above and below, to direct concentrated cones of fire against enemy fighters. Pilot: Captain Robert Morgan, industrial engineer from Ashville, North Carolina. Co-pilot: Captain Jim Verinis, business administration student at the University of Connecticut. Radio operator and gunner: Sargent Bob Hanson, construction worker from Spokane, Washington. Navigator: Captain Chuck Leighton, chemistry student at Ohio Wesleyan. Engineer and top turret gunner: Sargent Harold Loch from Greenbay, Wisconsin. Tail gunner: Sargent John Quinlan of Yonkers, New York. Turret gunner: Sargent Cecil Scott of Rahway, New Jersey. Bombadier: Captain Vince Evans of Fort Worth, Texas. Left waist gunner: Sargent Bill Winchell of Chicago, Illinois. Right waist gunner: Sargent Tony Nastal of Detroit.

 

December 7th 1941. Day of infamy. One tranquil Sunday in December air raid sirens blared in Honolulu as Japanese Zeros and Vals swept over Pearl Harbor, leaving behind “blood, guts, burning oil and bursting shells.” Here, too, persevered the American defender of liberty. On the other side of the globe, the same obstinate endurance of will, the same code of honor, the same ironclad imperative of discipline, the same indomitable American spirit, the same selfless sacrifice, the same uncompromising attack, the same swift and sure victory.

 

 

 

 

On the decks of the aircraft carriers Enterprise, Hornet, Yorktown, and Lexington. Borne by the wings of P-47 Thunderbolts and P-51 Mustangs. At the decisive battle of Midway. At Guadalcanal. In rat-infested trenches in the Philippines. Corregidor. Bataan. Guam. Mindanao. Okinawa....

 

There also stood the gaunt, gray, battle-weary American defender of liberty, half-starved and almost out of ammunition, driving forward through thick and thin, through the bloody haze of the last reverberating shots, to decisive victory. And as the dust was settling, he and his comrades found a long pipe, stuck Old Glory’s pole into it, and raised it atop Mt. Suribachi.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Over here, and over there, he drained deep the bitter and horrible cup of war. In the four corners of the world, he gave his full measure of devotion. In the European Theatre. In the Pacific Theatre. In Korea. In Vietnam. In Afghanistan. In Iraq. At Omaha Beach and at Utah Beach; in the frozen forests of the Ardenne and at the Maginot Line; on the sands of Iwo Jima and at Leyte Gulf; at Heartbreak Ridge and on Porkchop Hill; in the heat of the Tet Offensive and in the inferno of Dien Bien Fu; at Khe Sahn and at Da Nang; in the streets of Mogadishu, Somalia; in Kabul and in Kandahar; in Baghdad and in Najaf, in Anbar Province and in Fallujah, he gave up his life to the obscenity of war, to defend the God-given Liberty of man.

 

 

 

U.S. Army Soldiers of Delta Company, 2nd Battalion, 8th Cavalry, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, patrol the roads near a tactical checkpoint in Taji, Iraq, Sept. 17, 2007. (U.S. Army photo/ Senior Airman Steve Czyz)

 

 

What shall we say then, and how shall we thank these honored dead? In the words of Abraham Lincoln:

 

 

The world will little note nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did.... It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us—that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion—that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain, that this nation under God shall have a new birth of freedom, and that government of the people, by the people, and for the people shall not perish from the earth.2

 

 

The psalmist stated the matter long ago:

 

If the foundations be destroyed, what can the righteous do?

(Psalm 11:3)

 

If the foundations of America have survived the ravages of time, it is because her Founders were wise enough to give the primacy to the Creator, and relative subordinacy to the created state. America started out well. The Bible was her national Book and her Constitution and Bill of Rights were predicated on great Christian-Biblical teachings. With these sure and auspicious foundations, she grew to be the greatest nation of all times—a beacon of liberty and an exemplar of true democracy on earth. There was a time when the whole world looked up to America with envy, awe and respect.

 

So what happened to change all of that?

 

If a house is beginning to fall apart, it is probably because it has slid off its foundations. If the endeavors of America are becoming vain, it is because the nation has ceased to be under the action of the causes that gave birth to it. If the confidence of America is waning at home and her strength seemingly declining abroad, it is because the spiritual and political leaders of the nation have lost sight of causes upon which the nation was founded.

 

Within the pages of In God We Trust you will learn a great deal more about America’s legacy of freedom. You will also find out exactly what has to be done to restore trust, confidence and respect for the United States of America throughout the world.

 

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1. General Douglas MacArthur gave his farewell speech at West Point Military Academy in May 1962, on the occasion of his acceptance of the Sylvanus Thayer Award for service to his country. MacArthur had brought no prepared text and literally spoke “from the heart.” There were no TV cameras to record his speech. Fortunately, however, a tape recording was made, from which The National Observer was able to produce a written transcript, appearing exclusively in The National Observer of May 20, 1962. Some of the words attributed to MacArthur are incorporated into the Tribute found above and the one found on page 146 of In God We Trust.

 

2. Abraham Lincoln, Gettysburg Address, 1863.

 

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