DAVID LIMBAUGH AT THE HILLSDALE SEMINAR.
Today I had the opportunity to hear three of the speakers from the program. (I’ll blog about them all in turn.)
David Limbaugh spoke in the morning about the left’s war against Christianity in the public square—and particularly in public education. He began by discussing the Christian influence that was foundational in the creation of the American Republic. Limbaugh emphasized the view of the founders that man was created in God’s image (thereby giving mankind dignity and inalienable rights), but that man was marred by the fall. Thus, the need was clearly seen for ordered liberty that restrained man, all the while recognizing that the government of men must likewise be restrained.
Limbaugh delved into the First Amendment and focused particularly upon religious liberty—our most important liberty. He noted that the Establishment Clause was designed to implicitly protect religious liberty (by prohibiting the Congress from passing laws respecting an establishment of religion), whereas the Free Exercise Clause explicitly protected religious liberty.
The Establishment Clause’s interpretation over the last half-century was described by Limbaugh as “twisted.” He was particularly critical of the U.S. Supreme Court’s 1947 case of Everson
—both for incorporating a strict separationist concept into the Establishment Clause and also for applying that concept to state and local government (i.e., beyond the Congress). Importantly, Limbaugh asserted that cases like Everson
were not made in a judicial vacuum, but were instead were produced in a climate conducive to those decisions. He argued that this culture had only grown stronger in it’s anti-Christian sentiment, producing court decisions that reverberate back to the culture, with the anti-Christian elements of the culture and the court decisions then reinforcing one another.
Limbaugh was to the point. He openly spoke of “the war against Christianity.” Specifically, he spoke of some recent cases wherein religious liberty was completely denied by courts. In one such case, a Lutheran church was told by a judge that it could not exclude members from its own premises—even when there was a church judicial process made available to those members who wanted to continue attending the church.
In Limbaugh’s view, the forces fighting against Christianity are engaged in a clear effort to scrub away any Christian expression or symbols in the public square and also promote an insidious endorsement of anti-Judeo-Christian value systems. He directed much focus upon the public education system as a means to impose such an anti-Judeo-Christian worldview, through the propagation of “death education,” secular humanism, compulsive sex education, etc.
Earnestly did Limbaugh speak of the need for Christians to wake up and recognize that they are in a war—because the other side already knows it. He spoke of his disappointment with the lack of response from Christians in the face of militant opposition that is disrespectful to the rule of law and adopts an extreme ends-justifies-the-means approach. Here Limbaugh pointed to the recent actions of judges in San Francisco and Massachusetts on homosexual marriage.
Limbaugh did note that he did not choose the title of his book—Persecution
—as that was a decision left to the publisher. Nonetheless, he declared that he stood that title because the kind of opposition that Christianity currently faces in the media, public education and elsewhere is acting in a way that proceeds to persecution. I thought this to be a very profound point.
Overall, Limbaugh was very impressive. Like his book, his speech pointed to a very important problem in America today. Aside from the content, he proved a passionate and engaging speaker. He is wholeheartedly committed to addressing this crucial issue, finishing his talk by imploring the crowd to be bold and stand up for Truth.