VOICE OF FREEDOM – recorded in June, 1947
The people is everybody. This grand, mind-staggering "we"—yes, it is all of us—all and every one of us. A government dedicated to the sanctity of the unpopular, a reputation thoughtfully attuned to the unimportant vote, which guards as national treasures the minorities.
We the people, where are we headed now?
I interrupt Orson Welles to offer my own thoughts of what Mr. Welles wrote over 50 years ago:
"Jesus, the days I have seen..."
And how true Orson Welles words were -- way back in 1947!
Or William Shakespeare's against the Puritans in England, in 1598 when he wrote HENRY IV.
Just witness the recent rally in Washington, D.C. held by Glenn Beck.
Now, I must ask how anyone who has actually read the American Constitution, (except for Glenn Beck) can possibly believe it condones in any way, shape or form what he said in his recent rally in our Nations Capitol?
Mr. Beck is nothing less than this era's Joesph McCarthy and Beck's so-called hero, Orson Welles would be the first person to call him the George Wallace of this era.
Likewise, the the founding fathers of the Constitution, Thomas Jefferson, Ben Franklin (who Welles played) and all the others would certainly be happy to denounce the idiotic ideas of Mr. Beck and his notion of America as a "Christian Nation."
Maybe I'm wrong, but my own reading of the Constitution makes me feel that I can safely be of any any religion, or none at all, as I choose, in America. But perhaps I'm wrong about this... Maybe Glenn Beck and I can fight it out in the Supreme Court. But, seriously, everyone in there right mind knows America was a nation founded on the concept of religious freedom. To call this country a "Christian Nation" makes me feel Mr. Beck is nothing less than what I think Orson Welles would call him: A FASCIST! His thoughts go against everything that the founders of the Constitution were against. Many of Mr. Beck's followers have suggested that to find God in the Constitution, all one has to do is read it and see how often the framers used the words "God," or "Creator," or "Jesus," or "Lord."
Well, go ahead. Give the Constitution a look. Orson Welles clearly knew what it contained when he recited it for a recording in the dark Watergate era of President Richard Nixon. Except for ONE notable instance, no "Christian" words ever appear in the U.S. Constitution. In fact, the original Constitution bars any religious test to hold any federal office in the United States. Which means a Jew, a Catholic, a Buddist or a Muslim can serve as the President of the United States of America. So even if President Obama is a Muslim (which clearly, he is not), he could still serve as President.
Now, I return you to the words of wisdom written by the great Orson Welles:
We have become the pilots of suicide. Fearful, perversely fearful of our scheduled but rejected greatness: when the ideal dies so dies the civilization, which was supported by it. It may be that this ideal of ours is only hibernating. But there are no signs of a spring. The Roosevelt Democratic Party was not a political party—it was a way of life for most of us who work for a living—the good cheer for most Americans born into darkness.
...That way has become a conspiracy: we stand accused of every black brand of disloyalty. We are no longer spokesmen because we cannot speak. Not one of us is small or casual enough to escape attention.
Ours was an argument, which carried its own eloquence. They kicked us off the air, the old, old interests of aggregated wealth. It is radio and this strange new medium of radio silence that is the subject. The Truman doctrine was not handed down by some tablets of the law. FDR won his campaigns—all of them—on the air. Freedom of assembly: airtime was our meeting hall and we are now denied its use; a killing censorship or else collaborate (or else.) It was all very pleasant and urbane.
Free speech has been politely and unobtrusively murdered—we had nothing to lose but our microphones. Your obedient servant as a result of his efforts as a radio commentator has been successfully muffled now even in his old profession of radio actor. Not that he hasn't had some offers. The radio you know is always available if you'll promise never to use the radio to say anything. A big, big manufacturer of breakfast food, for instance, sent out a feeler lately. Five broadcasts a week at big, big money might be mine if I would undertake to deal exclusively with (what I must take to be unconscious irony) the 'human interest side' of the news. There was an even longer string than that attached to it. The proposed contract covered not only airtime, but also all my waking time. Every public utterance was to be checked for content with a special board of advertising agency ideologists. In a word, they were putting up a heap of dough to buy outright a man's long-term opinion! …It’s more than possible that radio is happier without me, but I can speak for my fellow spokesmen and I do. They were most necessary debaters. The debate was most necessary. Now the debate is closed. It must be opened. And now thank you and until the next time—until our American radio is free again…
I remain as always — obediently yours,