Mandeville, LA – Exclusive Transcript – Back to this “Plague of Republican Ignorance” piece and the general theme, what Mr. Egerer is writing about is the fact that if you really desire this relationship, this monogamous relationship with the founding fathers, wouldn’t it behoove you to actually at least attempt to study what it was that they studied? Check out today’s transcript for the rest…
Begin Mike Church Show Transcript
Mike: There’s a piece that’s out at American Thinker blog yesterday. I think this guy is actually onto what it is that I’m driving at here. “The Plague of Republican Ignorance” by Jeremy Egerer. As I read this post, I’m thinking: Yeah, that’s exactly right. You’ve got it, brother. You’ve nailed it. Keep writing this stuff. What he writes about is how there is this infatuation today, and we talk about this often on the show. As a matter of fact, if I go look at my Twitter feed right now, I guarantee you that someone has already posted something about this show being back on hosted by yours truly [mocking] “And now the Constitution will have its defender. The Constitution will have its day. The Founders are back and they’ll be defended by Mr. Church. He’ll get out there, roll his sleeves up, and he’ll do it.”
While all that may be true, as I try to point out as often as is humanly possible here, I am accorded the great opportunity and blessing that is being here on the Sirius XM satellite radio airwaves. I try to make the point as often as I can that if you really desire, if it really is your fondest, innermost desideratum, the think longed for, if the thing longed for really is a return to the Halcyon glory days of the American Revolution and the founding, [mocking] “They had it made. They gave us rights and they gave us a government. Ben Franklin warned us we had a republic if we could keep it and we screwed it up. If only we could return to those days.” This is most certainly a laudable and praiseworthy sentiment. Let’s just get that out of the way. I am not suggesting that it isn’t. It is most certainly is praiseworthy. It most certainly is something that should be a desideratum, a return to government that is republican in form.
By the bye, if that were ever to actually happen, you have to consider and you would actually have to think about: What would replace it? What would you and I be talking about if we weren’t talking about the 3.9 trillion-headed hydra known as Mordor on the Potomac here on this show, known as Washington DC? What would you discuss? What would there be to complain about, baseball? Would we be complaining about the fact that we don’t have rugby in the United States?
Back to this “Plague of Republican Ignorance” piece and the general theme, what Mr. Egerer is writing about is the fact that if you really desire this relationship, this monogamous relationship with the founding fathers, wouldn’t it behoove you to actually at least attempt to study what it was that they studied? How many times have I been here on this show and have been called up by a listener and asked: Mike, why don’t you give me some stuff to read about the founding fathers? Where do you start, Church? How many emails have I received about this? How many times have we discussed: The founders wouldn’t have done this and the founders wouldn’t have done that. Sometimes this may be true….
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The question that we fail to ask, though, is: Why wouldn’t the founders have done it? It doesn’t matter what the “it” is. Why isn’t that question first and foremost? Does it really matter what they would or would not have done if you cannot substantiate and cannot ascertain why it was or why it would have been that they would not have done A, whatever A may be, or B, whatever B may be, or C, whatever C may be? To me, that is the most important part of the entire discussion, yet it’s the one that gets the most short shrift. [mocking] “Well, Mike, 18th century stuff is hard to read. Have you tried to read it?” Actually, I have tried to read it, and you’re right, it is difficult to read. You have to read it with a dictionary next to you. Sometimes it’s a bit embarrassing: Oh, man, I can’t believe I don’t know what this stupid word means. Let me go look it up and then I’ll reread this paragraph. That’s fine, because you’re kind of learning some vocabulary as you’re slogging your way through this.
If you can actually divine and figure out why it would have been, for example: Why would Patrick Henry inveigh so, so mightily against the ratification of the Constitution? To learn this, partially you could just read the 20 days of debate that were recorded by the stenographer on hand in the Virginia Ratifying Convention. That would give you some primary source material. Also, as you were reading that, you could make notes of what Henry was saying and what he was referring to and then go look up that. If he was referring to it, I would say it’s safe to say that Henry has actually studied that and actually read that. Now we’re at a definable moment. Now you have something that you can really sink your teeth into, not just what it was that the greatest orator who ever lived, not just what he was saying but why he was saying it. That’s what Mr. Egerer is writing about here:
It never fails to amaze me that in almost every random encounter with a Lutheran, I have found that he knows nothing of Martin Luther’s theology. Most glaringly, the Lutheran, as is often the case amongst mainstream Evangelicals, feels perfectly comfortable vilifying John Calvin. Yet when I mention that John Calvin’s and Martin Luther’s views on human depravity, predestination, and the like are practically identical, and that this can be proven by a casual reading of Luther’s The Bondage of the Will and Calvin’s Institutes of the Christian Religion, these Lutherans almost always passionately deny the case, and leave with a sense of insult.
I do not say this to pick on Lutherans — so-called Protestants who apparently do not know what they are protesting — but rather to note that this general ignorance of founding principles and biblical doctrine has spread to almost every sect of American society. However uncomfortable it may be, we have to ask why it is that the American right so often touts the pilgrims, when nobody has ever read the Puritans; or why they talk proudly of the Great Awakening, when nobody has ever read Edwards or Whitefield; or why we claim to love the Reformation, when nobody has ever read Martin Luther. Why do they talk of Founding Fathers, without having read the Federalist, or Democracy in America, or Second Treatise of Government; of biblical justice, without knowing The Law; and of wisdom, without knowing the Proverbs? It would seem more reasonable, at least from my perspective, that if someone admires another, he would attempt to mimic that other: for unfeigned admiration espouses a sense of healthy jealousy, driving the watchful toward a series not simply of triumphs, but of the thoughts and habits and virtues which birthed them. But if we do not find a respectable imitation, it is only safe to call such admiration deceitful.
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Mike: In other words, if you’re not willing to study the studies of your subject, are you really admiring them for what they did or is it just an exercise in conformity? [mocking] “I say this because it’s very popular to say that I heart the founding fathers.”
End Mike Church Show Transcript