the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union,
establish justice, ensure domestic tranquillity, provide for the common defense,
promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves
and our posterity, do ordain and establish this constitution of the United
States of America."
not going to ask you to raise your hands, but how many have read the preamble
to the Constitution in the last year? The preamble just read, to me, is one of
the most remarkable paragraphs ever conceived by the human mind. It is my hope
this bicentennial of the Constitution will draw us in the United States back
not only to our legal and political roots, but back to our moral and spiritual
roots as well, perhaps even more than the bicentennial in '76 did.
What happens when we cut ourselves off from our roots?
in the 43 years that Doris and I have been married have I purchased for her an
orchid corsage. The corsage is always handled the same way. It's worn on the
occasion for which it was purchased. When we get home she places it in the
cotton batting in the box, sprinkles a little water on it, and puts it in the
refrigerator. She wants to preserve the fragrance and the beauty of that orchid
and wear it as often as possible. But both of us know sooner or later that
orchid is going to have to be consigned to the trash can because it is dead. It
has been cut from its roots.
thirty years I have lived in Washington, D.C., a conviction has been growing
and deepeningand come to a kind of explosive climax in my heart in the last
five years since I've been the chaplain of the Senatethat this is precisely
where we are in national life today. We are seeing a futile effort ...
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