Constitution DayMore Activism Ideas
"The Constitution is not an instrument for the government to restrain the people, it is an instrument for the people to restrain the government - lest it come to dominate our lives and interests." - Patrick Henry
If the Revolution symbolized the birth of this country, then the formation of the Constitution is on par with its baptism. The Constitution of United States was adopted on September 17, 1787 and is the framework of our federal government. The culmination of the intellectual positions of our Founding Fathers, the Constitution is arguably one of the most important documents in the history of Western Civilization since the signing of the Magna Carta.
The Constitution was designed to act as a curb on government power, while still giving enough freedom to empower individuals to create the great nation that we see before us today. Predicated upon property rights, federalism, and individual liberty, the Constitution is still the supreme law of the land in the United States.
Unfortunately liberal professors at universities across the country attempt to perpetually denigrate the Constitution. These professors engage in regurgitating the trite leftist cliché's that the Constitution is a document created by males to promote their patriarchal capitalist power structure. The liberals will then change the narrative to the importance of acknowledging the Constitution as a living breathing document so we can achieve the left wing utopian goal of "equality".
Left wing administrators are also guilty of flagrantly disrespecting the Constitutional rights of students on campus. Whether it's the creation of "free speech zones" that only seem to apply to conservatives, the suppression of allowing students the right to concealed carry on campus, or broad search and harassment policies, administrators are among the more egregious violators of student's rights on campus.
It is your job as a conservative student activist to respond to these lies and intellectually arm yourself so you can combat the campus left. Student need to be aware of the true meaning of the Constitution, and how it is supposed to protect individuals by acting as a bulwark against big government.
Every September 17th, our nation celebrates Constitution Day as a reminder of the importance of this document. A federal law created the holiday in 2004 which stated that any university or college that accepts public funding must provide educational programming on the Constitution on that day.
Jump at this opportunity to be the centerpiece of an event that your school is already required to host. Many students are unaware of their bill of rights and this is a great time to point them out. Your CLP group should celebrate this day by passing out free Constitutions to passing students while tabling on campus, and inform them about their rights and liberties, and how big government liberals are impinging upon them.
How to Take Action:
1. Collect the materials. Obviously, the most important materials you will need for this event are pocket Constitutions to hand out to fellow students. You can purchase them in bulk from the National Center for Constitutional Studies at http://www.nccs.net/us_constitution.html. If your school still has an unconstitutional "free speech zone", the Leadership Institute will send you free caution tape to surround the space. Simply register with LI at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Leadership Institute will also send you a letter from FIRE detailing your rights, in addition to providing you with copies of FIRE's Guide to Free Speech On Campus that you can distribute to your peers. If possible, you should have a bullhorn to read the Constitution out loud.
2. Reserve space on campus. If your school has a "free speech zone" reserve that space for your Constitution Day event. If not, any high-traffic area on campus works. Keep a confirmation of the reservation.
3. Invite allied organizations. Ask other conservative, libertarian, and free speech groups on campus to join you in your celebration of Constitution Day. This is a great way to find common ground between other groups on campus.
4. Hold a planning meeting. Make a schedule of volunteers to hand out pocket Constitutions with accompanying factsheets. Also, designate students to read the entire Constitution out loud (preferably with a bullhorn or sound system) nearby. Go over talking points and determine who will handle advertising responsibilities. Finally, have one or two students prepared to handle all questions from the press.
5. Advertise. Invite your campus and local media to your table through a press release a few days prior to the event. Post fliers around campus advertising your free-speech demonstration. Campus-wide e-emails, Facebook, and Twitter are also great ways of gaining attention for your event.
6. Celebrate the creation of our Constitution! If your school has a free speech zone, use caution tape (provided by the Leadership Institute) to surround the space. Then stand outside of the zone in order to make a point for open and free speech on campus. Engage passersby and educate them on the importance of understanding and following the Constitution. Hand them a free pocket Constitution and factsheet that points out the rights of college students. Offer students a $100 prize if they can find in the Constitution where public universities have the right enforce free speech codes and zones (Of course, there is no prize because such a clause doesn't exist). Have other students read the Constitution aloud (again, outside of the zone) to further advocate for free speech. Ask students to sign your petition to eliminate free speech zones/codes on college campuses.
7. Advertise again. Following your demonstration, send a press release with high-quality pictures to local and campus media outlets.