A Day to Celebrate: Happy Constitution Day
After July 4th, today is the most important date on the calendar for us here at 1776 Action.
On September 17th, 1787, thirty-nine delegates from across the newly-independent United States gathered in the Assembly Room of the Pennsylvania State House – the same place where, eleven years before, many of those same individuals had signed the Declaration of Independence – to sign our Constitution, outlining the basic structure of our government.
Among all the world’s existing constitutions, ours is the oldest, a reflection of the profound wisdom of the Founders and the genius of the governing system they produced. It has survived wars, economic crises, and even global pandemics.
One primary reason for our Constitution’s longevity is its relationship to the eternal truths contained in the Declaration of Independence.
As Abraham Lincoln observed, the Declaration did more than just declare the American colonies independent from Great Britain. It offered all people a vision of a deeper and more profound independence to pursue their destiny in life.
After he was elected and before he was sworn in as the 16th President of the United States, Lincoln wrote a note to himself about this deeper meaning of the Declaration and its relationship to the Constitution.
Drawing on a biblical passage from Book of Proverbs that reads “a word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver,” Lincoln mused on the common thread that unites the Declaration and the Constitution:
It has a philosophical cause. Without the Constitution and the Union, we could not have attained the result; but even these, are not the primary cause of our great prosperity. There is something back of these, entwining itself more closely about the human heart. That something, is the principle of “Liberty to all”–the principle that clears the path for all–gives hope to all–and, by consequence, enterprize, and industry to all.
The expression of that principle, in our Declaration of Independence, was most happy, and fortunate. Without this, as well as with it, we could have declared our independence of Great Britain; but without it, we could not, I think, have secured our free government, and consequent prosperity….
The assertion of that principle, at that time, was the word, “fitly spoken” which has proved an “apple of gold” to us. The Union, and the Constitution, are the picture of silver, subsequently framed around it. The picture was made, not to conceal, or destroy the apple; but to adorn, and preserve it. The picture was made for the apple – not the apple for the picture.
The signing of the Constitution represented the completion of the mission that George Washington began when he took command of the Continental Army in 1775. Without Washington’s skill as a military commander and his subsequent willingness to give up power and return to his life as a farmer in Virginia, the Constitution likely never would have been written, and the Declaration would be but a footnote on the pages of history, an irrelevant remnant of another failed rebellion in the long story of the British Empire.
Fittingly, George Washington became our country’s first President. The precedents he set would continue to guide the nation forward, setting our country on a path toward prosperity and serving as a beacon of freedom and liberty for the world.
Keeping Our Constitutional Freedoms
This is a history and a legacy worth remembering, defending, and building on, and it’s why we founded 1776 Action.
After President Biden disbanded President Trump’s 1776 Commission on his first day in office, we knew it was up to patriots like you to keep alive the flame of liberty and self-government, and to never forget our history and our heroes.
It’s also why we included Washington’s battle flag in our logo, as a constant reminder of the price of freedom and the sacrifices made by our forefathers to secure liberty for future generations of Americans.
In his farewell address, President Washington wrote, “Citizens, by birth or choice, of a common country, that country has a right to concentrate your affections. The name of American, which belongs to you in your national capacity, must always exalt the just pride of patriotism more than any appellation derived from local discriminations.”
Unfortunately, we know that there are those in our society today who wish to preach that our nation is not worth being proud of. They hope to replace the true narrative of our history with one that teaches children that every part of American history, including our Declaration of Independence, Constitution, and even the very building that houses those documents are just evidence of “systemic racism.”
Their goal in doing this is simple: to use lies and deception to perpetuate and inflame tensions between groups of people in order to consolidate their own political power.
Why Our Movement Matters
We at 1776 Action know that those who paint this false narrative of American history are engaged in a grotesque lie. We are fully aware that there exists evil in the world, and that men and women are capable of wicked acts. We are not naive. We believe that our children should be taught the truth about all of American history, the good, the bad, and the ugly.
But we also know what America stands for, and the great good our country and our people have accomplished in the world. We know that the American people are constantly striving to live up to the noble principles established in our founding documents and fought for over two centuries. We know that America is good.
That’s why our Patriotic Education Month initiative is so important, and why it is critical that we celebrate Constitution Day. Our young people need to know about the heroes and patriots who dared to dream of a nation where all are created equal, and where someone’s worth is derived not by the condition of their birth, but from their intrinsic dignity as a human being made in the image of God.
Your Role in this Fight
In response to those who wish to tear down our country, we must proclaim this truth: America is Good.
An important part of this fight is sharing this message with others. In honor of Constitution Day and Patriotic Education Month, 1776 Action in the next few days will be making available bumper stickers, yard signs, hats and shirts bearing that phrase, America is Good.
We hope that you’ll stay with us in this fight, and on this Constitution Day, let us pledge to one another to never forget the great inheritance that we have been afforded as Americans.
P.S. 1776 Commission on Constitution Day
As we’ve shared with you before, President Trump’s 1776 Commission, which has continued on in their mission in spite of the current administration’s best attempts to silence it, released a statement today in recognition of the holiday. We highly encourage you to give it a read.