Wherever we can, we will be using original documentation for our points and will provide a library of them here. We encourage everyone (though most won’t) to refer to original documentation when making your point– it is a matter of character that we do.
Below we give a few reasons why original documentation is so important, especially today where anonymity has given a platform to the know-it-all’s and an educated and well-informed presentation as well as response is your best offense.
Where Small Matters Become Big Legends (and vice versa)
One of the processes of information degeneration comes from a principle that a simple game can teach us in a matter of minutes (many of us already know this game, but for those that don’t, we elaborate)…
Have as many children — or even adults — into a room, and stand side-by-side, forming a circle (the more the number of people, the better the example).
Have someone outside the circle write a phrase down on a piece of paper, and not letting anyone see this phrase, whisper it into someone’s right ear.
This person in turn needs to turn to their left and whisper what he or she heard into the right ear of that person
Continue until the last person has heard the phrase (the person to the right of the first person to receive this phrase)
Now have this last person write down what he or she heard
The larger the crowd participating in this game, the more likely the final person to hear the message will have written something different from what was originally written and shared.
The reason for all the difference?
Our own beliefs as well as our own background will form what we hear.
Words have weight and they mean something — and that will morph into what they hear into what they believe they heard.
It does not matter the intelligence level of the circle of people — this will repeat itself.
From Games to Reality
Now, shift away from the game onto the desk of someone writing a book, who is doing research using information from others that did the same or similar research, who did their research using information from others that did the same or similar research, who did their research using information from others that did the same or similar research…
When original documents of historical value are found, especially of those of historical influence (like George Washington) research performed by diplomatics (the study of a document to ascertain the authenticity and reliability of documents). What becomes painfully obvious is that many times what was penned originally and what is being taught now are not even close in many ways. In the areas they are, the interpolation of the meaning seems to have taken a turn in many cases as well.
This is not always so, but enough to warrant facts to become false beliefs later in time.
Two historical examples:
Separation of Church and State
This phrase has receive more attention and contrived attention than any other phrase in our Constitution — only thing is, it is NOT in the Constitution. Nor is it in our Declaration of Independence, our Pledge of Allegiance, any of the State Constitutions, not any of the Amendments.
You will find it however in a document that is not even considered a legal document, Jefferson’s Letter to the Danbury Baptists. Before making the mistake of just jumping in and finding out what Jefferson said, best practices calls for us to look into why he was responding to the Danbury Baptists in the first place.
Thomas Jefferson wrote a letter to the Danbury Baptist Association in 1802 to answer a letter from them, asking why he would not proclaim national days of fasting and thanksgiving, as had been done by Washington and Adams before him.
Jefferson made sure by consulting with two other politicians that he was conveying his message properly, and that is: it was not the place of the Congress or the Executive to do anything that might be misconstrued as the establishment of religion.
Jefferson did NOT say the established governments were free from religious intervention,
Jefferson DID say religion is free from government intervention.
The first point can be easily researched in ALL the founding father’s handwritten notes — as New York, Philadelphia and then D.C. did not have church nearby, services were often held in the same chambers they conducted their business during the week .
The second point requires stepping back as to WHY many left Europe for the Colonies in the first place: King George did exactly what Jefferson and our founding fathers did not want to happen. King George dictated what the religion should be for the nation as well as what it could and could not do.
You can read Jefferson’s final draft sent to the bishops by clicking here
We are a Democracy
Again, go to our Constitution, our Declaration of Independence, our Pledge of Allegiance, any of our State Constitutions, and any of the Amendments and search for the word Democracy.
To save you some time and effort, and if you want to believe us, the word democracy happens exactly ZERO times.
Article 4, Section 4 of our Constitution says directly what type of government we have…
“The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican Form of Government…”
It is the only phrase in that Constitution that directly notes what form of government our country is to have.
In practice, we have a Constitutional Republic that operates by Democratic means — that hardly means we are a Democracy (mob rule: 50% + 1 gets the majority).
You can obtain a copy of our Constitution here.