Mark Levin is interviewed by Neil Cavuto on the heels of the 5-year Tea Party anniversary. Enjoy it. Hat tip Mass Tea Party:

It is with my fondest of wishes that you have a Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukkah this holiday season. For my atheist friends, may the kindness and generosity of Christmas cross your doorstep.

There is no finer place on the Internet than Free Republic. It is the coup de grace of the coup de tat. I have said it before and I’ll say it again, “Free Republic has some of the finest minds I’ll ever know.” There is no better place that offers the best examples of Christmas than this great forum. There is no better example of generosity and kindness than Free Republic. There is no finer example of principles of conservative values than here. In the best of traditions, FReepers celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, or the holiday season, giving more than they receive. With the continued support of this web site, Free Republic will stomp out liberalism with impunity.

This forum is made up of the best, brightest, and bravest of our fine Republic. Whether you are Jewish, Christian, Agnostic, or Atheist, you are beacons of conservatism that exhibit generosity far more than you’re given credit. You are, by your very essence, examples of the greatest America has to offer. I wish you the happiest of holidays from the bottom of my heart.

Without you waging war on liberalism, the America we know today would be a socialist Mecca. Keep fighting the battle to repeal Obamacare. Stay strong and we will win the day. So thank you for the tireless efforts, your patriotism, and enduring optimism. You are Red, White and Blue America. You are the difference makers for the United States. And you demonstrate excellence in conservatism. Thanks be to God.

For those that are away from home, our soldiers, sailors, airmen, marines, coastguardsmen, and merchant marines, I give my undying gratitude and wish you the merriest of Christmases, Hanukkahs, and good will towards all men. Thank you for your service to this country and your noble efforts in spreading liberty. Know that there are far more that support you than is covered in the mainstream media.

You are the brightest hope of America’s future. You are not ignorant, violent, or racist. You believe in equality for all men and women, yet know that it must not extend to a great experiment; an experiment rooted in Marxist fundamentals. To the women of Free Republic: Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, and thank you for being good mothers, wives, lovers, and conservatives. Without you, feminism could’ve destroyed this great country. I thank God for women like you, raising another generation of conservatives. We certainly couldn’t have come far without you.

And a special thanks to Rush Limbaugh. You have galvanized the conservative movement, enacted the “New Media,” and given hope and optimism to so many people. You ardently support Americans and give us daily doses of truths. Thank you for keeping “The Passion” alive. Merry Christmas, Rush Limbaugh.

There only two men that could’ve changed my life for the better. One was my father, the other Rush Limbaugh. These two men have had indelible impacts on my life, granting me a moral and conservative compass that guided me, and continues to guide me through life’s journey. May God bless you and shine His light upon you.

Thank you to David Limbaugh for his guidance, kindness, and unending efforts to combat the persecution against Christianity. Whether you think you deserve it or not, you make a difference. More than you know. You represent Christians well, David, and I wish you and your family a Merry Christmas. God bless you, sir. You’ve earned it.

A thank you goes out to Mark R. Levin for The Liberty Amendments: Restoring The American Republic, and for his daily radio program. He reminds us all that the U.S. Constitution defines conservatism. He is an undeniable genius and he will help the “citizen activists breathe life back into the Constitution.” I cannot thank the ‘Constitutional Engine of Conservatism’ enough for your love of America and your tenacious nature in supporting liberty. Thank you, sir.

A Merry Christmas goes out to all the FReeper business owners, to those that have survived the Marxist assault on America. Thank you for continuing to endure the taxes and the encroachments of liberty on your business. Thank you for suffering through smoking bans, higher taxes and government tyranny. Thank you for your donations to charitable organizations. Thank you for those Christmas bonuses. Thank you for the sixty to eighty hour work weeks in an effort to provide those goods and services at an equilibrium price. Most of all, thank you for your indefatigable entrepreneurial spirit. Without that spirit, America would still be making buggy whips.

And finally, to the “citizen activists,” a very Merry Christmas goes out to you as you begin the arduous task of restoring the American Republic. Without you, America could never have succeeded in its Founding, nor will it continue to succeed as the greatest country on Earth. There is indeed something special to be said for those that resist tyranny. Your candle burns brighter than any other – flickering against all odds of overbearing and meddling federal bureaucracy. Thank you so much. American needs your fight, your spirit and your undying devotion to this country.

Merry Christmas, FReepers! May you have a very FReeper Christmas! God bless you and your family this holiday season. If not for all of you, I would not have the inspiration to write about conservatism. I owe you more than you know, and hope God blesses each and every one of you this holiday.

If you haven’t paid enough attention, you would likely assume that there are only two elections in the entire country. The first, involving that often seen rhinoceros species Governor Chris Christie – who has been in bed with more Democrats than Ted Kennedy, and the second, involving the gubernatorial race pitting Ken Cuccinelli – a real conservative and Terry McAuliffe – an old Clinton retread whom Rush Limbaugh lovingly refers to as “the punk.”

Many conservatives are holding their breath – rightfully so in Virginia – and hoping for a victory for Cuccinelli. I couldn’t agree more. He has solid conservative credentials, and was the first to file suit against the Affordable Care Act. It’s easy to see that he is a man of action whose interest is governed in the civil society, the U.S. Constitution and in the welfare of the liberty of not only Virginians, but that of the American people.

It would be magnificent if Cuccinelli was to claim a victory tonight over McAuliffe and the GOP establishment. But it won’t be the first time that Americans have suffered defeat and returned stronger to claim victory. And it won’t be the first time for conservatives to suffer such a defeat. Reagan did it and returned to conquer both the Democrat Party and the RINOs that sought his defeat.

Our history is replete with defeats. On August 27, 1776, the American people and their cause suffered a resounding defeat the Battle of Long Island. A few short months later, General Washington took his troops across the frozen Delaware River and took the fight to the Hessians. It was a resounding victory as best referenced by Jack E. Levin’s book, George Washington: The Crossing. Thank goodness that George Washington didn’t surrender and go home. Instead, he pressed on with the fight and the American cause and its people won the day in 1781.

As a Texan, I can remember one such defeat on March 6, 1836, at the Alamo in San Antonio, Texas, where 182 Americans – not just Texans – held off a superior force for 34 days. On April 21, 1836, the cry of “Remember the Alamo,” was heard as Texas won its independence.

Americans don’t capitulate. We’re not France. We’re not even close – despite the attempts by the Democrat Party and the GOP establishment to manage the surrender. I would like to ask when we surrendered. Did we surrender after the Battle of Long Island? No. Did Texas surrender after the Alamo? No. Did the North surrender after the Battle of Bull Run? No. And did we surrender after Pearl Harbor? Hell, no!

The same can be said of conservatives. We didn’t surrender after Clinton was elected in 1992 and 1996. We didn’t surrender after Obama was elected in 2008 and 2012, and we certainly as hell won’t surrender if “The Punk” defeats Cucinelli. Not now! Not ever! Or in the words of “The Great One,” Mark Levin, “We’re not going anywhere!”

There is a great awakening taking place, and chance to exercise Mark Levin’s Liberty Amendments. For those that wish not to, “breathe life back into the Constitution,” I would love to ask:

Parlez-vous francais?

Have you ever heard, “Working in this job is like eating a crap sandwich?” If you have, you’re not alone. Thanks to Barack Obama, millions of Americans are experiencing what it’s like to eat a crap sandwich. But if you’re one of the people that have a cushy D.C. job with a subsidy for Obamacare, now you too can experience the full, rich flavor that only Barack Obama can deliver. How is it possible? It’s all possible with Barack Obama’s Crap In A Jar™.

That’s right, folks! Barack Obama’s Crap In A Jar™ is the one-of-a-kind spread that’s tailor made for any type of bread. It goes on smooth and easy so it doesn’t tear the bread. It’s packed full of protein and 100% organic – none of those additives or preservatives you find in your generic jars of crap. It’s low on carbs and environmentally friendly! Moreover, the sleek jar design gives people the impression that you are a VIP!

It’s perfect for dinner parties! You’ll have all your guests talking about it. Be the life of the cocktail party and bring one as you do the D.C. circuit. Better yet, send one to your favorite Senator or Congressman. Let them know just how special they really are. Send Mitch McConnell one with a caring note on just what he can do with it.

There’s nothing better when you’re hungry, under the gun, and have to surrender to make a deal with Harry Reid. Whip it out, spread it on and voila…you’ve got an instant lunch on the go you’ll never forget! Give it to your staffers too! They’re busy hanging up on those angry, Tea Party extremists and don’t have time to take a lunch. They shouldn’t have to starve either!

Obama has spared no expense in creating the perfect spread that fits your every craving! Best of all – its taxpayer subsidized with the full faith and credit of the United States taxpayer behind it. It’ll never default! Barack Obama guarantees it! So if you’re an investor, have no fears. Barack Obama has shoveled out tons and tons of crap, and in this market, you’re sure to make a killing!

Don’t hesitate any longer! Log onto iwantmycrapnow.gov and get your jar! Join the millions of Americans that are experiencing their full bodied, rich, mouth-watering taste of the crap sandwich! You can even go bipartisan and wash it down with Two If By Tea™ And here’s a bonus: If you sign up within the next 24 hours, we’ll throw in a free subsidy for Obamacare. You can’t afford to say no! Don’t get left behind. Log on and live the experience!

In the Battle of Bunker Hill, the Americans received word that the British were planning to take Dorchester Heights and Bunker Hill. Bunker Hill is in Charlestown, overlooking the town of Boston, and strategically located between the Mystic and Charles Rivers. The British were sniped at by the minutemen on their retreat from Concord, and a 2nd humiliation would not be allowed.

Colonel Prescott was given command of the forces at Charlestown by the Committee of Safety in Massachusetts. His orders were to fortify Bunker Hill and defend it until relieved. After marching from Cambridge he gathered his field officers at the top of Bunker Hill. They decided to build the fortification on Breed’s Hill (un-named at that time, but part of it was known as Breed’s pasture). Breed’s Hill is not as high as Bunker Hill, and is closer to Boston. They worked feverishly all night to fortify the position. A redoubt (earthen fort), breastworks (trench), and railed-fence were hastily built.

On the morning of June 17th 1775, the British fired on the American positions from nearby warships and from Copp’s Hill in Boston, to soften the “rebel” line. The American forces had received few reinforcements, and were undersupplied. Just before the battle, Prescott gave the famous command “Hold fire! Wait until you can see the whites of their eyes. Then up – and tear out their bellies! Shoot at their belts, God damn ‘em.”

The British would achieve a victory, but it would be a costly one. In a letter to John Adams, Colonel Prescott wrote, “I was now left with perhaps 150 Men in the Fort, the Enemy advanced and fired very hotly on the Fort and meating with a Warm Reception there was a very smart firing on both sides. after a considerable Time finding our Amunition was almost spent I commanded a sessation till the Enemy advanced within 30 yards when we gave them such a hot fire, that they were obliged to retire nearly 150 yards before they could Rally and come again to the Attack. Our Am(m)unition being nearly ex(h)austed could keep up only a scattering Fire. The Enemy being numerous surrounded out little Fort began to mount our Lines and enter the Fort with their Bayonets, we was obliged to retreat through them while they kept up as hot a fire as it was possible for them to make. We having very few Bayonets could make no resistance. We kept the fort about one hour and twenty Minutes after the Attack with small Arms. This is nearly the State of Facts tho(ugh) imperfect & too general which if any ways satisfactory to you will afford pleasure to your most obedient humble Serv(an)t.”

In a similar feat, Senators Ted Cruz of Texas, and Mike Lee of Utah were outnumbered by snarling, liberal enemies on all sides of them. Still, Senators Cruz and Lee took the field of battle in attempt to beat off the Barbarian Hordes that are hell bent on destroying our liberties, the U.S. Constitution and the American people who support it.

For over 21 hours, Senators Cruz and Lee continued their battle cry, giving us unbridled conservatism, a passion for America, and a true representation of their constituents that voted them into office. For over 21 hours, DC had no choice but to listen. It was in that moment that the light of our forefathers shined it’s brightest. They were articulate. They were resolved, and neither of them were going to “go gently into that goodnight.”

Senators Cruz and Lee were, and are, a true representation of the principles in which the Founders bestowed to its posterity. The Senators’ recalled the Spirit of ’76, not sitting idly by; rather they took action for their cause, for the American cause and for its people. During Mark Levin’s radio broadcast tonight, September 26, 2013, he aptly referred to Senator Cruz as, “an historic figure.” Senator Cruz is indeed an historic figure. Mark went on to say, “And there are only two or three of them out there.” Levin is correct. After all, Levin is an historic figure. He knows history when he sees it happening in front of him.

The commonality between Cruz and Levin is very simple. They believe in the U.S. Constitution, they believe in America, and neither of the men is ever going to back down from a fight – neither would ever look at Obamacare, shrug their shoulders and note, “It’s the law of the land.” Not Cruz. Not Levin. Not ever.

That’s what makes these men special. So raise your glasses for Senators Ted Cruz and Mike Lee. Raise your glasses because they didn’t dare and back down from a fight. Raise your glasses because they choose to represent their constituents’ demands. Raise your glasses because they believe in the U.S. Constitution. Raise your glasses because they love America and its people.

But most importantly, raise your glasses because they looked into the “whites of the eyes” of the Barbarian Hordes and fired with a volley of unabashed, unashamed and unstoppable conservatism!

We post this in honor of Senator Ted Cruz taking to the floor of the U.S. Senate in opposition to Obamacare. This is a speech from Rush Hudson Limbaugh, Jr. given many times. It was one of the most substantive things that Senator Cruz read last night during his opposition speech to Obamacare. The intro is by Rush Hudson Limbaugh III, and is the right of The Rush Hudson Limbaugh Show and Rush Hudson Limbaugh III. Enjoy it as I have:

My father, Rush H. Limbaugh, Jr., delivered this oft-requested address locally a number of times, but it had never before appeared in print until it appeared in The Limbaugh Letter. My dad was renowned for his oratory skills and for his original mind; this speech is, I think, a superb demonstration of both. I will always be grateful to him for instilling in me a passion for the ideas and lives of America’s Founders, as well as a deep appreciation for the inspirational power of words which you will see evidenced here:

“Our Lives, Our Fortunes, Our Sacred Honor”

It was a glorious morning. The sun was shining and the wind was from the southeast. Up especially early, a tall bony, redheaded young Virginian found time to buy a new thermometer, for which he paid three pounds, fifteen shillings. He also bought gloves for Martha, his wife, who was ill at home.

Thomas Jefferson arrived early at the statehouse. The temperature was 72.5 degrees and the horseflies weren’t nearly so bad at that hour. It was a lovely room, very large, with gleaming white walls. The chairs were comfortable. Facing the single door were two brass fireplaces, but they would not be used today.

The moment the door was shut, and it was always kept locked, the room became an oven. The tall windows were shut, so that loud quarreling voices could not be heard by passersby. Small openings atop the windows allowed a slight stir of air, and also a large number of horseflies. Jefferson records that “the horseflies were dexterous in finding necks, and the silk of stockings was nothing to them.” All discussing was punctuated by the slap of hands on necks.

On the wall at the back, facing the president’s desk, was a panoply — consisting of a drum, swords, and banners seized from Fort Ticonderoga the previous year. Ethan Allen and Benedict Arnold had captured the place, shouting that they were taking it “in the name of the Great Jehovah and the Continental Congress!”

Now Congress got to work, promptly taking up an emergency measure about which there was discussion but no dissension. “Resolved: That an application be made to the Committee of Safety of Pennsylvania for a supply of flints for the troops at New York.”

Then Congress transformed itself into a committee of the whole. The Declaration of Independence was read aloud once more, and debate resumed. Though Jefferson was the best writer of all of them, he had been somewhat verbose. Congress hacked the excess away. They did a good job, as a side-by-side comparison of the rough draft and the final text shows. They cut the phrase “by a self-assumed power.” “Climb” was replaced by “must read,” then “must” was eliminated, then the whole sentence, and soon the whole paragraph was cut. Jefferson groaned as they continued what he later called “their depredations.” “Inherent and inalienable rights” came out “certain unalienable rights,” and to this day no one knows who suggested the elegant change.

A total of 86 alterations were made. Almost 500 words were eliminated, leaving 1,337. At last, after three days of wrangling, the document was put to a vote.

Here in this hall Patrick Henry had once thundered: “I am no longer a Virginian, sir, but an American.” But today the loud, sometimes bitter argument stilled, and without fanfare the vote was taken from north to south by colonies, as was the custom. On July 4, 1776, the Declaration of Independence was adopted.

There were no trumpets blown. No one stood on his chair and cheered. The afternoon was waning and Congress had no thought of delaying the full calendar of routine business on its hands. For several hours they worked on many other problems before adjourning for the day.

Much To Lose

What kind of men were the 56 signers who adopted the Declaration of Independence and who, by their signing, committed an act of treason against the crown? To each of you, the names Franklin, Adams, Hancock and Jefferson are almost as familiar as household words. Most of us, however, know nothing of the other signers. Who were they? What happened to them?

I imagine that many of you are somewhat surprised at the names not there: George Washington, Alexander Hamilton, Patrick Henry. All were elsewhere.

Ben Franklin was the only really old man. Eighteen were under 40; three were in their 20s. Of the 56 almost half – 24 – were judges and lawyers. Eleven were merchants, nine were landowners and farmers, and the remaining 12 were doctors, ministers, and politicians.

With only a few exceptions, such as Samuel Adams of Massachusetts, these were men of substantial property. All but two had families. The vast majority were men of education and standing in their communities. They had economic security as few men had in the 18th Century.

Each had more to lose from revolution than he had to gain by it. John Hancock, one of the richest men in America, already had a price of 500 pounds on his head. He signed in enormous letters so that his Majesty could now read his name without glasses and could now double the reward. Ben Franklin wryly noted: “Indeed we must all hang together, otherwise we shall most assuredly hang separately.”

Fat Benjamin Harrison of Virginia told tiny Elbridge Gerry of Massachusetts: “With me it will all be over in a minute, but you, you will be dancing on air an hour after I am gone.”

These men knew what they risked. The penalty for treason was death by hanging. And remember, a great British fleet was already at anchor in New York Harbor.

They were sober men. There were no dreamy-eyed intellectuals or draft card burners here. They were far from hot-eyed fanatics yammering for an explosion. They simply asked for the status quo. It was change they resisted. It was equality with the mother country they desired. It was taxation with representation they sought. They were all conservatives, yet they rebelled.

It was principle, not property, that had brought these men to Philadelphia. Two of them became presidents of the United States. Seven of them became state governors. One died in office as vice president of the United States. Several would go on to be U.S. Senators. One, the richest man in America, in 1828 founded the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad. One, a delegate from Philadelphia, was the only real poet, musician and philosopher of the signers. (It was he, Francis Hopkinson not Betsy Ross who designed the United States flag.)

Richard Henry Lee, a delegate from Virginia, had introduced the resolution to adopt the Declaration of Independence in June of 1776. He was prophetic in his concluding remarks: “Why then sir, why do we longer delay? Why still deliberate? Let this happy day give birth to an American Republic. Let her arise not to devastate and to conquer but to reestablish the reign of peace and law.

“The eyes of Europe are fixed upon us. She demands of us a living example of freedom that may exhibit a contrast in the felicity of the citizen to the ever-increasing tyranny which desolates her polluted shores. She invites us to prepare an asylum where the unhappy may find solace, and the persecuted repost.

“If we are not this day wanting in our duty, the names of the American Legislatures of 1776 will be placed by posterity at the side of all of those whose memory has been and ever will be dear to virtuous men and good citizens.”

Though the resolution was formally adopted July 4, it was not until July 8 that two of the states authorized their delegates to sign, and it was not until August 2 that the signers met at Philadelphia to actually put their names to the Declaration.

William Ellery, delegate from Rhode Island, was curious to see the signers’ faces as they committed this supreme act of personal courage. He saw some men sign quickly, “but in no face was he able to discern real fear.” Stephan Hopkins, Ellery’s colleague from Rhode Island, was a man past 60. As he signed with a shaking pen, he declared: “My hand trembles, but my heart does not.”

“Most Glorious Service”

Even before the list was published, the British marked down every member of Congress suspected of having put his name to treason. All of them became the objects of vicious manhunts. Some were taken. Some, like Jefferson, had narrow escapes. All who had property or families near British strongholds suffered.

· Francis Lewis, New York delegate saw his home plundered — and his estates in what is now Harlem — completely destroyed by British Soldiers. Mrs. Lewis was captured and treated with great brutality. Though she was later exchanged for two British prisoners through the efforts of Congress, she died from the effects of her abuse.

· William Floyd, another New York delegate, was able to escape with his wife and children across Long Island Sound to Connecticut, where they lived as refugees without income for seven years. When they came home they found a devastated ruin.

· Philips Livingstone had all his great holdings in New York confiscated and his family driven out of their home. Livingstone died in 1778 still working in Congress for the cause.

· Louis Morris, the fourth New York delegate, saw all his timber, crops, and livestock taken. For seven years he was barred from his home and family.

· John Hart of Trenton, New Jersey, risked his life to return home to see his dying wife. Hessian soldiers rode after him, and he escaped in the woods. While his wife lay on her deathbed, the soldiers ruined his farm and wrecked his homestead. Hart, 65, slept in caves and woods as he was hunted across the countryside. When at long last, emaciated by hardship, he was able to sneak home, he found his wife had already been buried, and his 13 children taken away. He never saw them again. He died a broken man in 1779, without ever finding his family.

· Dr. John Witherspoon, signer, was president of the College of New Jersey, later called Princeton. The British occupied the town of Princeton, and billeted troops in the college. They trampled and burned the finest college library in the country.

· Judge Richard Stockton, another New Jersey delegate signer, had rushed back to his estate in an effort to evacuate his wife and children. The family found refuge with friends, but a Tory sympathizer betrayed them. Judge Stockton was pulled from bed in the night and brutally beaten by the arresting soldiers. Thrown into a common jail, he was deliberately starved. Congress finally arranged for Stockton’s parole, but his health was ruined. The judge was released as an invalid, when he could no longer harm the British cause. He returned home to find his estate looted and did not live to see the triumph of the Revolution. His family was forced to live off charity.

· Robert Morris, merchant prince of Philadelphia, delegate and signer, met Washington’s appeals and pleas for money year after year. He made and raised arms and provisions which made it possible for Washington to cross the Delaware at Trenton. In the process he lost 150 ships at sea, bleeding his own fortune and credit almost dry.

· George Clymer, Pennsylvania signer, escaped with his family from their home, but their property was completely destroyed by the British in the Germantown and Brandywine campaigns.

· Dr. Benjamin Rush, also from Pennsylvania, was forced to flee to Maryland. As a heroic surgeon with the army, Rush had several narrow escapes.

· John Martin, a Tory in his views previous to the debate, lived in a strongly loyalist area of Pennsylvania. When he came out for independence, most of his neighbors and even some of his relatives ostracized him. He was a sensitive and troubled man, and many believed this action killed him. When he died in 1777, his last words to his tormentors were: “Tell them that they will live to see the hour when they shall acknowledge it [the signing] to have been the most glorious service that I have ever rendered to my country.”

·William Ellery, Rhode Island delegate, saw his property and home burned to the ground.

· Thomas Lynch, Jr., South Carolina delegate, had his health broken from privation and exposures while serving as a company commander in the military. His doctors ordered him to seek a cure in the West Indies and on the voyage, he and his young bride were drowned at sea.

· Edward Rutledge, Arthur Middleton, and Thomas Heyward, Jr., the other three South Carolina signers, were taken by the British in the siege of Charleston. They were carried as prisoners of war to St. Augustine, Florida, where they were singled out for indignities. They were exchanged at the end of the war, the British in the meantime having completely devastated their large landholdings and estates.

· Thomas Nelson, signer of Virginia, was at the front in command of the Virginia military forces. With British General Charles Cornwallis in Yorktown, fire from 70 heavy American guns began to destroy Yorktown piece by piece. Lord Cornwallis and his staff moved their headquarters into Nelson’s palatial home. While American cannonballs were making a shambles of the town, the house of Governor Nelson remained untouched. Nelson turned in rage to the American gunners and asked, “Why do you spare my home?” They replied, “Sir, out of respect to you.” Nelson cried, “Give me the cannon!” and fired on his magnificent home himself, smashing it to bits. But Nelson’s sacrifice was not quite over. He had raised $2 million for the Revolutionary cause by pledging his own estates. When the loans came due, a newer peacetime Congress refused to honor them, and Nelson’s property was forfeited. He was never reimbursed. He died, impoverished, a few years later at the age of 50.

Lives, Fortunes, Honor

Of those 56 who signed the Declaration of Independence, nine died of wounds or hardships during the war. Five were captured and imprisoned, in each case with brutal treatment. Several lost wives, sons or entire families. One lost his 13 children. Two wives were brutally treated. All were at one time or another the victims of manhunts and driven from their homes. Twelve signers had their homes completely burned. Seventeen lost everything they owned. Yet not one defected or went back on his pledged word. Their honor, and the nation they sacrificed so much to create is still intact.

And, finally, there is the New Jersey signer, Abraham Clark.

He gave two sons to the officer corps in the Revolutionary Army. They were captured and sent to that infamous British prison hulk afloat in New York Harbor known as the hell ship Jersey, where 11,000 American captives were to die. The younger Clarks were treated with a special brutality because of their father. One was put in solitary and given no food. With the end almost in sight, with the war almost won, no one could have blamed Abraham Clark for acceding to the British request when they offered him his sons’ lives if he would recant and come out for the King and Parliament. The utter despair in this man’s heart, the anguish in his very soul, must reach out to each one of us down through 200 years with his answer: “No.”

The 56 signers of the Declaration Of Independence proved by their every deed that they made no idle boast when they composed the most magnificent curtain line in history. “And for the support of this Declaration with a firm reliance on the protection of divine providence, we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor.”

My friends, I know you have a copy of the Declaration of Independence somewhere around the house – in an old history book (newer ones may well omit it), an encyclopedia, or one of those artificially aged “parchments” we all got in school years ago. I suggest that each of you take the time this month to read through the text of the Declaration, one of the most noble and beautiful political documents in human history.

There is no more profound sentence than this: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness…”

These are far more than mere poetic words. The underlying ideas that infuse every sentence of this treatise have sustained this nation for more than two centuries. They were forged in the crucible of great sacrifice. They are living words that spring from and satisfy the deepest cries for liberty in the human spirit.

“Sacred honor” isn’t a phrase we use much these days, but every American life is touched by the bounty of this, the Founders’ legacy. It is freedom, tested by blood, and watered with tears.
- Rush Limbaugh III
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