I’ve had some people ask me, “So, now that we’re learning about the Constitution, what can we actually do to help save America?!” I know many of you are frustrated, and the mounting concern is very real.
I also know that reading articles and watching news reports about everything wrong with our nation and government and how liberty is in peril stirs up a desire to do something, anything to change the trajectory of the country and help save America.
This feeling of helplessness only adds to the mounting pit of dread in your stomach. Believe me, I know.
I’ll be the first to say that I don’t have all the answers. I struggle with this myself. I (or any of us) could run for some sort of office. That’s one tangible activity we can do. But when I think about doing so, I always stop because I don’t want a muzzle. Besides, we all know how dirty politics can get.
I truly think the cleanest and most effective approach to politics and making any kind of change in the world is simply by speaking the truth and shining a light on what is instead of what should be according to our Constitution.
Yet, I still struggle with the same question. Is there more I, or we, can do to help America other than get into politics? How can speaking the truth and educating ourselves and others truly make a difference?
Well, I recently had a bit of a lightbulb moment as I pondered this question and interacted with other conservatives at a meeting.
I don’t have all the answers and I will still ponder what other methods might also be effective. But there is something we all can actively do to help save America.
I gave a political talk recently to a small conservative “lunch” group in North Carolina. I spoke on the infamous Supreme Court case Marbury vs. Madison (1803) — which, if you haven’t read, I’d strongly advise you to read — about the unconstitutional power of judicial review. The people listening responded as if it was information they’d never heard. They kept saying, “Everyone needs to hear this!”.
Their reaction was similar to their reaction to my earlier talk on the Constitution and why we need government. This type of reaction has led me to believe that in the midst of all the politics and Republican vs. Democrat fighting, people have lost touch with the simplicity of the Constitution and what it is they are really fighting for. It’s like I’m able to bring them back to the simplicity of the Constitution, remind them of them of some basic truths, while giving them some new information about what they can do to help save America. The combination of all of that is somewhat awe-inspiring.
I’m not really giving new information. It’s just information that has been intentionally neglected and/or intentionally over complicated making it seem new.
A few weeks later, I attended another lunch with the same group, but this time, I was not speaking. One of North Carolina’s state senators came to speak. She was passionate and spoke about the different types of legislation she was working to get passed through the legislature. She kept referencing the courts and the power of the courts. The courts apparently keep blocking or striking down laws that the Republican legislature passes.
While she spoke on this, individuals who had heard my talk on Marbury vs. Madison a few weeks prior, kept looking at me, like, “Does she know what we now know? She has to know that the power of the courts is unconstitutional!”
So, I asked a few simple questions. I first asked her who was enforcing the court’s rulings because the court has no enforcement agent since it is not a lawmaking branch — it relies on the other branches of government to enforce its pseudo laws. She said the extremely democratic Attorney General enforced the court rulings.
Ah, the executive branch. The branch of government created to enforce legislative laws, NOT judicial rulings.
I then asked what the N.C. state constitution says about N.C. courts because the U.S. Constitution only creates one court: The Supreme Court. Congress creates all other courts, meaning Congress can also eliminate them at their will. My question to the local representative was simple. What does the N.C. state constitution say about the state level courts? Can the legislature create and eliminate them like the federal legislature can federal courts?
She paused and said, “I don’t know.” Later she said she thought the Constitution set up the courts itself, but, again, she wasn’t sure.
And that is when the lightbulb went off. She was working hard for many good things, but I realized, that, in the same way all of us must learn the basics, the foundations of government to actually be able to vote effectively, many people in local (and likely federal) government do not know the basic truths about government, the Constitution, the courts, their power vs. executive power etc.
LOCAL POLITICIANS NEED TO BE EDUCATED JUST LIKE WE NEED TO BE EDUCATED
What if our local politicians started to get a grasp of all the material I’ve been sharing? Things like:
- Why do they need to follow their Constitution?
- Why arbitrary power is so dangerous
- Why the courts don’t have the power we all believe they have
- Why we have government in the first place
What if, when our local politicians sat down to make law, they did so looking at their Constitution, using it as the job description it is? The local politician I spoke to didn’t seem to even know what the N.C. constitution says. Probably, most of our local politicians don’t know what it says. They see a problem, and they decide to make law about it — not even considering whether it’s constitutional or not.
If they used the Constitution as their guide, and approached politics with a fully informed perspective, it would fundamentally change the way they govern.
WHAT YOU CAN DO TO HELP SAVE AMERICA?
Politics starts at the local level. Just look at COVID policies. Read the Founding Fathers. As a nation, we were made to be first governed locally and then nationally.
And guess what? Local politicians are accessible. They are just like you and me. Many of them have other jobs, live near us, and are happy to come to local events and socialize with their constituents. That means that we can make a difference! We can help save America.
Every single one of us must actively pursue our local representatives (those that are likely in our own party) and help educate them on what their job is, what the Constitution says and what we expect of them. Most of them aren’t held accountable to the state constitutions. Most of their political beliefs are not grounded in theory . . . but they should be!
They need to know that our beliefs are grounded. We hold the Supreme Law of the Land and State in high regard and will hold them accountable for it. And believe me, if politics start changing at the local level, it will eventually start changing at the federal level.
So, what can you do to help save America? Get involved in local politics like you never have before. Get your friends involved. Educate yourselves and your friends and then go educate your local politicians. Start a movement by doing this. Show them that you aren’t just mindless sheep anymore and won’t see things only through the lens of conservatism or liberalism.
Let them know that you see things through the Constitution (both state and federal) and you WILL hold them accountable to that standard. Seriously, how long has it been since citizens have actually held local politicians accountable to their state constitution? I bet our local politicians don’t even think about that.
We must change that. And we can change it.
No all lifelong politicians are lifelong because they choose to be. Sometimes they are lifelong simply because an uneducated and/or uninterested citizenry keeps voting them in office. It’s not their fault that they are so removed from the citizenry by being in politics for forty years. That’s our fault!
It all starts at the local level. What if we fundamentally changed our state legislatures and state government by hounding them and educating them on something as simple as following their state Constitution — even if we just picked out one thing? What if we helped clue them in on the fact that the courts really have no power? What if we helped them learn about how they can eliminate local courts should they so decide?
We have so much potential for change at our fingertips. And if we’d only choose to use the knowledge we have, we could help save America!
Remember friends, all fires start with a spark.
This article has been edited. It originally appeared on The Liberty Belle and is used by permission.
Christin McMasters is a South Carolinian now residing in North Carolina and has a Ph.D. in political science. She is a budding blogger and political science instructor, and her passion is politics.
Using her keyboard as her weapon of choice, Christin imparts some of her excitement, passion and knowledge about American government on her website, TheLibertyBelleNC.com.