With liberty dead in over half the world, and gasping everywhere else, it is time for all Americans to spend a little while finding out just what our rights are—and be willing to spend a little more time protecting them.

In our country it is especially important now to inquire into our Constitution, above all, our Bill of Rights. We came to a virgin continent and have made money so fast, though we have wasted and squandered our resources, that we have forgotten our constitutional heritage.

It has been a pleasant job for me, these last few years. As a Member of Congress, I have had access to the best sources of information and have talked to our finest authorities. But besides availing myself of scholarship and learning, I have been pretty nearly all over the country; in slums and penthouses, in small shops and great factories, in cities and on farms—with PEOPLE everywhere. Letters by the thousand I have received from individuals who tell me what they think about the Constitution.

These people who write and talk about the Constitution have as much right to their opinions in all matters of opinion as the lawyers and judges who are supposed to be experts. They do not want the Constitution to become loose, dry bones tied up in the judges' sack.

I hope that America's renewed interest in constitutionalism will not fall into a vulgar Battle of Symbols as did the Supreme Court fight of 1937, in which neither side was right. For as a whole, American "Constitutional Law" has purposely been made technical and obscure. Our people have been tricked by symbols, magic words, strange taboos. Many are the tricks played on the American people to make them stand for practices which are unfair indeed.

The principal thing is for all Americans to find a way to hang on to what our forefathers called liberty. Conservative or radical, you have the right to any opinion you like—that's inherent in Americanism. Free opinion is one of the blessings of our Constitution.

It is this free opinion that I hope and you hope will be preserved. If we are sensible Americans, we must agree upon our right to disagree. We must, too, open our eyes to history in order that we may see the future and prepare for it.

Maury Maverick   
San Antonio, Texas