"The Greeks, during the golden age, knew perfectly well that what distinguished them from the barbarians of that day was their respect, and the respect of their leaders, for the Law. John Locke put the matter plainly when he said, 'Where Law disappears, tyranny begins'." - Margaret Thatcher
The New York Times reports that the President asked now-fired FBI director James Comey for a statement of loyalty, and further reports that Comey declined. If so, it is to his credit. This would be a sensible time to point out that we should reconsider our national Pledge of Allegiance.
We swear that allegiance "to the flag [...] and to the Republic for which it stands". It would be more patriotic if we swore that allegiance not to the flag, but to the Constitution. It is to the law -- and the Republic which it establishes, not just "for which it stands" -- that we owe our loyalty above all. Most certainly, above loyalty to any person.
This goes right to the heart of the rule of law. We have institutions and codes for a reason: People are fallible, but when we write down the rules and hold ourselves to them in predictable ways, then we stand some hope of passing along the things that matter to the next generation. When an individual leader thinks he or she is above those written rules or bigger than those institutions, then that individual needs to be reminded that they are subject to the law, too.
Listen below to a related clip from Saturday's show: