Braveheart is my favorite movie. Any person with a soul can't help but love William Wallace's uncompromising principles and ridiculous courage. I've got a replica of a sword like William Wallace's hanging in my office.
At the end of the movie, Wallace is captured by the English and faces a brutal execution. When offered the chance for a "merciful" beheading if he confesses his treason, he looks out into the crowd and locks eyes with a young boy who's watching him. Wallace doesn't say anything, but in that moment of silence, everyone knows what's going on: Wallace realizes who's watching him and decides to embrace the torture rather than sacrifice hope for the rising generation. After enduring agony, he finally shouts not "mercy" but "freedom" as his last word.
I'm new at parenting. I've got one who's two and another on the way. But I'm convinced that nothing can bring out the will to fight, to endure, and to sacrifice self like our kids. There's nothing short of sin that I wouldn't do for them.
I don't think there's any group of people in America today under attack like our kids. We must fight for them.
Shocking news came from Tennessee last week when a federal judge ruled in favor of a group of drag queens who wanted to perform and talk about sex and masturbation in front of kids. On the heels of that decision, a federal judge in Florida struck down a law that prohibited giving puberty blockers to minors. And last year, a federal judge blocked the part of Alabama's law banning cross-sex hormones and puberty blockers.
The men who bled the ground red in the Revolutionary War would have rather let the British march through than ever fight to establish a country recognizing a constitutional right to mutilate or sexualize children.
We just celebrated Memorial Day, where we gave lip service to the fallen. Shall we honor them with our lips but not our lives? If we value what they died for, then we need to engage in a battle where we're not even facing loss of life. Instead, our battle is merely whether we're willing to hold the line in the legal and political arenas.
The stakes are only social scorn, demonetization, and possibly losses in court. But we didn't give up fighting for our kids when those were the stakes in the battle against abortion. Neither should we when the battle is against mutilation.
The good news from a legal front is this: under an originalist interpretation of the U.S. Constitution, there is no way that those seeking to groom and mutilate our kids should be able to prevail. The Tennessee judge who struck down the prohibition against drag queens held that it violated the Free Speech Clause. But historical evidence shows that the purpose of the Free Speech Clause was to abolish prior restraints and guarantee that each person had the right to pursue truth. Twerking for toddlers had nothing to do with it.
The other purported justification for this has been the Equal Protection Clause. But if you go back and read the debates of those who framed that Clause, its proponents intended to take the principles of God-given equality in our Declaration of Independence to its logical conclusion. God absolutely intended for blacks and whites to be treated equally, but He never intended for kids to be groomed!
My adjuration to fellow conservative lawyers is this: take the fight to the courts. Do not relent. The Constitution and American history are on our side.
The only reason the left has made any progress on this is by getting the federal court to set ahistorical and unconstitutional precedents. For the first time since the New Deal Era, we finally have a U.S. Supreme Court that cares more about the Constitution's original meaning than it does about upholding bad precedent. We have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to get these problematic precedents overruled. How dare we do anything other than take that opportunity!
Our kids are worth it. Let us not fear some initial losses in the lower courts. As long as we have even an ounce of maneuvering room in the lower courts, let's fight while the battle rages there. Even if we don't win there, let's take the fight all the way to the top. And if, as Harvey Specter might say, you're backed against a wall of bad precedent, you break the thing down!
Might you lose if you're so bold? Every lawyer loses. Not every lawyer really wins.
Let's be the heroes our kids need. They're depending on it.
Matt Clark is the President of the Alabama Center for Law and Liberty, a conservative nonprofit law firm that fights for limited government, free markets, and strong families in the courts. His column appears every Friday in 1819 News. The opinions expressed in this column are those of the author. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the policy or position of 1819 News. To comment, please send an email with your name and contact information to Commentary@1819News.com.
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