What is Treason?


Write a new post in response to today’s one-word prompt.


America has become an angry nation. We are angry with each other. We have lost sight of the fact that by our Constitution and the Bill of Rights, we have the freedom to say what we believe; to speak openly against unwelcome governmental policies; to worship openly without fear; to defend ourselves if necessary without risk of imprisonment.

So someone asked me yesterday when freedom of speech crosses the line and becomes treason.

Good question. I did some research, and here’s a good definition:

18 U.S. Code § 2381 – Treason

Current through Pub. L. 114-38. (See Public Laws for the current Congress.)

Whoever, owing allegiance to the United States, levies war against them or adheres to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort within the United States or elsewhere, is guilty of treason and shall suffer death, or shall be imprisoned not less than five years and fined under this title but not less than $10,000; and shall be incapable of holding any office under the United States.

Of course, such a definition must be defined.
Who owes allegiance to the  United States?  Anyone who was born here, or has gained legal citizenship through the naturalization process.  Anyone who was born in another country to parents who are United States citizens. I’m sure there is more, but that’s a good place to start.
If anyone fitting that description wages war against the United States, he is guilty of treason.  If anyone fitting that description gives aid and comfort to the enemies of America, he is guilty of treason.
Just for the sake of argument, then, we need to define who our enemies are.
Anyone who  openly hates America and perpetrates violent acts, or acts that strengthen our enemies, is an enemy. Anyone who attacks us, on our own soil or in a foreign military base, embassy, or other American holding, is our enemy.
To subsidize those who have openly declared their determination to destroy us is an act of treason.  To send such an entity weapons of war and destruction is an act of treason.
The rest of the definition seems self-explanatory to me. And if you are putting two and two together, you should feel at least some small stirring of anger over what has happened in America in your lifetime.  When we are forbidden to fly the American flag in a public place because to do so may offend someone, that is a treasonous order. People from other countries came here for the freedoms and opportunities we offer. If they are offended by our flag, then they should have stayed home.
Yes, I’m an old-fashioned, flag-waving American. I do not love my country blindly, because I understand human nature.  I do love my country loyally, though, and I am thankful to be an American. Not ashamed, not apologetic.  Thankful.
Angry?  Sometimes, because the freedoms we should be protecting are being eroded from under our feet like the sand at the seashore when a breaker recedes into the undertow. And we’re just standing there watching it.
When my President goes around the world (on my tax dollar) and apologizes for the existence of my country? Yes, that makes me angry.

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