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FIVE PROTECTIVE FREEDOMS
The First Amendment guarantees our rights to
freedom of religion, speech, assembly and
association, as well as freedom of the press and our
right to petition the government for redress.
The framers of the Constitution were men of faith.
They had inherited the legacy of the earliest
settlers — the Puritans, who crossed the ocean to
find a place to exercise their religion freely, without
the political repression they’d faced in England
because they did not follow the doctrine of the
official church. That’s what the “establishment”
clause is meant to remind us of — the government
will not establish an official religion or prevent
others from worshipping as they choose.
And so, we see that the framers’ ideas regarding
freedom of speech and freedom of assembly are
bound up in the idea of freedom of religion. After
all, according to the Founders, we are born with
inalienable rights — life, liberty, and the pursuit of
happiness. The government does not grant these
rights — they are given to us by God. The promise
of the Constitution is to protect what was granted to
us by our Creator.
Freedom of speech and freedom of assembly are
protected by the Constitution as checks against
tyranny. We are empowered to speak out. And for
the framers, tyranny was not simply a political
problem but also a spiritual one. Taking from man
what was granted to him by God is a definition of
The first amendment not only acknowledges man’s
God-given right to exercise his religion and express
himself freely, it also empowers citizens in the
ongoing struggle against the onset of tyranny. At
America’s Future, we stand in eternal vigilance on
the side of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
The government does not grant these rights.
They are given to us by God.