For centuries, Christianity was expanded and nurtured by the Catholic Church until the Reformation of the Protestant movement. Protestant worship by the new denominations was suppressed by the Catholic Church. Then in the 1600s, pilgrims and Protestants came to the new continent to practice their religion freely from the state religions of English and European kingdoms.

Scholar/statesmen like Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, James Madison, John Jay and others drew from the Bible principles of government that never before had been codified or practiced. Self-government was never envisioned before in history. Free enterprise was a totally new concept. It was God, not kings or rulers, who gave the rights to men whom He created, that are specified in the first Ten Amendments to the Constitution.

The First Amendment specifies the right to have freedom of worship, free speech, a free press, right to a free assembly and to petition the government. The right to bear arms is in the Second Amendment.

These rights are what we have enjoyed and built on for 250 years, bringing the United States of America to become the strongest nation in the world. These are the air we breathe and we take them for granted. However, they are enjoyed by no other nation in history.

Then along comes the Marxist/socialist movement in Russia in 1919 with the Communist Manifesto. This substitutes the state as the giver of every good thing in the place of God the Creator enshrined in the Constitution. The state will give us free education, free health care, free housing, a stipend to live on and we will be free from the constraints of the Constitution with its self government under God and “he who does not work, neither shall he eat” philosophy.

So here we find ourselves faced with the decision in the 2020 election. Will we keep our God-given rights guaranteed in our Constitution or will we surrender them to the socialist platform promised by the Democratic Party candidates? Will we surrender our God-given rights to a socialist government that “nationalizes” the businesses like Venezuela has and promises to “equalize” the national wealth?

Your vote tells where you stand: One nation under God or a godless nation that purports to allot “to each according to his needs, from each according to his ability?” There is no going back to reclaim what we might lose. Your vote will tip the balance.

Janice Gravely

Rocky Mount