Having spent a good part of the last month researching the “tax-honesty movement,” I can tell you that without a doubt, there are some of the most sincere, patriotically motivated people among their number — as well as some of the craziest, most egotistical and dangerous (to you, if you listen) pied pipers you will ever encounter.

Allow me to make a few observations. First, about the court battles.

Many who take it on themselves to fight the IRS in court are possessed of a belief — an almost religious faith among this small fraternity — that goes something like this: America’s court system, although corrupt, is inherently bound to obey the law, if only one utters the right words, presents the right law, pleads the right argument. According to this belief system, the gates of judicial Heaven will mystically fall down, just as the walls of Jericho did on the seventh day of the Israelites’ silent encirclement of that doomed city, and justice will be delivered to the complainant.

They are half right. The judicial system is corrupt, and it does not abide by nor enforce the Constitution.

After all, the highest court in the land — the United States Supreme Court — ruled in 1973, in effect, that abortion shall be legal, regardless of state laws, from the moment of conception up to the moment of birth. In almost three decades, the Supreme Court has not seen fit to undo what it did then.

Now, if the highest court in the land can condemn innocent babies to death — with the attendant skull-crushing and brain-sucking and limb-ripping often involved — how can it be trusted to annihilate the very mechanism that feeds it: the United States taxing authority?

Or what of the Second Amendment? Has America’s judicial establishment ever affirmed conclusively the obvious — that the Second Amendment to the Bill of Rights guarantees the individual an unfettered right to keep and bear arms? The argument that this short and unambiguous amendment refers to a “collective right” — itself a meaningless phrase — is just a fantasy with no historical backing. All of the contemporary discussion and sentiment regarding firearms indicates unequivocally that the Founding Fathers cherished and insisted on an individual right to own firearms. And, of course, since the other nine rights enumerated in the Bill of Rights refer explicitly to individual protections from government, how could the Second Amendment alone confer a mythical “collective” right — that is, literally a right of government?

If, then, the judicial system cannot get such basic things straight as that Americans have a right to self-defense, and that the murder of innocent human babies shouldn’t be allowed, how can any thinking American trust the court system to rule adversely against its own master?

The day the court recognizes that babies are human, and that Americans have the right to defend themselves, that just might be the day one could begin to hope the courts would uphold the Constitution in other areas as well.

Of course, when David fought Goliath, that also was considered to be a fight against impossible odds. And, without a doubt, we still have some Davids left in this world — guided by the invisible hand of God to slay evil giants and establish righteous rule. But if you aspire to be a David and fight a Goliath, remember that the biblical giant-killer was able to prevail only because of his total reliance on God.

Which brings me to the next — and most important — point, concerning the people who take it on themselves to challenge the government.

“There are two types of people that get involved in all these causes — like the gun-rights movement or the tax-protest movement or the patriot movement,” a friend and national talk-show host recently told me, “the righteous angry, and the angry angry.”

His observation, based on his prior experience as a leader in the pro-2nd Amendment movement in California, was right on. Both groups espoused essentially the same beliefs, he said, and yet they were as different as night and day.

The “righteous angry” are those who are righteously outraged, indignant at the constant advance of tyranny, chipping away — or more likely, nowadays, hacking away — at the fundamental rights, values and humanity of Americans. They are motivated, at their core, by love of God and goodness and decency and justice.

The “angry angry,” on the other hand, are people for whom the primary motivation is not love of truth and justice and goodness but, rather, intense and abiding hatred of government or some other real or perceived evil. Often they are carrying forward discontent from their childhood. (Radical feminists are a perfect example of this. They hate men — all men — for the earlier injustices of their own fathers or husbands. To avoid having to face the hurt and anger they bring with them into adulthood, they instead create a scapegoat to blame and hate. Whites who hate blacks, same thing. Blacks who hate whites, same thing.)

They exist on hatred, rage, upset, resentment, victimhood. It is their life-breath, and a very unworthy substitute for true righteous motivation.

At its extreme, hatred of the government ultimately turns you into a Tim McVeigh — you become an enemy of the very thing you believe you are defending.

In truth, one righteous person-of-action has the force of 10 or 100 ordinary people. The problem is, when we’re angry, ticked off, upset and full of rage and adrenaline, we feel as though we’re strong and noble and powerful and heroic. We feel like soldiers striking a blow for liberty, when in reality, in the worst cases of this corrupt state of mind, we blow up a building and kill 168 of our countrymen thinking we’re patriots, when we’ve actually joined the enemy. (Even the dead children in the daycare center were dismissed by McVeigh as “collateral damage.”)

Here’s the problem: The American people have been seduced and corrupted over the last couple of generations, to the point that we are today a dim reflection of what we once were — which itself was only a dim reflection of what we all could be.

In fact, right now the government we have is just a reflection of us. Even Bill Clinton was a perfect reflection of us.

You don’t think so?

Do you really believe a righteous people could have a government like we’ve got? Could they have endured a criminal rogue like Bill Clinton for eight years, and then sent him packing with sky-high approval ratings, giving speeches for $100,000 to $150,000 per night? But Clinton’s not the problem — he’s our creation.

Try this little test to see if you’re a part of the problem or part of the solution.

Can you look at yourself in the mirror and say: “I myself am partly responsible for our government, for our culture, for the miserable world I live in. The unawareness, weakness, resentment, self-indulgence and just plain selfishness that have made up the fabric of most of my life is no different — except perhaps in degree — from the self-seeking, uncaring, power-hungry spirit that animates spineless congressmen, bullying IRS agents and corrupt judges”?

Even if you’re a good bloke now, in your earlier, more foolish days, you hurt and corrupted people, you were impatient with people, you were selfish — weren’t you? Then you were part of the problem you see reflected in all of our institutions today. It’s all made of the same stuff — sin.

OK. How many people at this point think I’m defending tyrannical government, just because I’m saying, “Don’t hate it”? If you raised your hand, you’re part of the problem.

Just as Gandhi told his followers he wanted to wake up their adversaries, not kill them for faults we all possess, I say that the day we all can look in the mirror and say, “I barely know what love really is,” that’s the day we’ll be close to real freedom. We’re talking about real love here — such as Jesus showed on the cross when he was tortured and killed and yet said, through his pain, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.”

The day we can recognize that we barely have a glimmer of what real love is about — and believe me, that’s the stuff that will transform this nation, not all of our frustration and rage and anger — we will truly be on a sure path toward national redemption.

The reality of our situation, dear readers, is that there are many battles that must be fought before good people can take back the culture and institutions of this nation.

It’s going to start with the self-awakening of individual Americans in whose hearts the fire of goodness, repentance and renewal has begun to burn. And then, motivated by grace, they move, act and create another world within this world. Just as the seamy subculture of yesteryear has crept out of the pit and become the dominant American culture today, tomorrow’s subculture of goodness must grow to the point that it becomes — again — the dominant culture.

It will be a long, difficult and glorious uphill battle in which every institution must be retaken by good people. One of those institutions is the news media. I’d like to think that WorldNetDaily.com and WorldNet magazine are involved in that fight.

There is no question that a dignified, love-based challenge to America’s horrendous — and yes, evil — income-tax system would likely hasten the day we see radical reform in that area. A truly credible messenger with a truly credible message makes an unbeatable combination.

Two thousand years ago, Barabbas and the other zealots wanted to kill the Romans and purchase their people’s freedom with their swords. Jesus tried to persuade them that the kingdom of Heaven would be won through different means — by change within. The crowd chose Barabbas. What about us?

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