I received the "Why it's first" email from Patriot Voices today and was surprised that the organization chose to use our first amendment in an attempt to solicit funds in this way. The email is right the 1st amendment is first for a reason, but that reason is not what the email would have you believe.
The original resolution sent to the states for ratification in 1789 proposed 12 amendments. When the votes of the 11 states were finally counted on December 15, 1791, only the last 10 of the 12 amendments had been ratified. Thus, the original third amendment, establishing freedom of religion, speech, press, assembly, petition for redress of grievances became the first duly ratified amendment to our constitution.
Now, the email could have addressed the fact that religion was the first issue that the Congress sought to secure for the people within this specific amendment, and that would have made a similar point, but it would have had the force of history behind it. I do not doubt that securing religious freedom was among the most important goals of our nation's founding, but to "spin" facts in this way is frustrating and disheartening.
Maybe it was by the Providence of God that this 3rd amendment became our 1st, but the founders sought more administrative tasks such as the size of the legislature and their pay before securing these rights. Without a workable process, none of these enumerated rights would amount to much in our daily lives anyway.