Wednesday, November 16, 2005

"Constitutional right to..."

Okay, this phrase is really starting to jump on my nerves. Some people are ignorant, and they should bring a suit against every public school civics teacher they've ever had. These teachers have failed.

Well, never fear! I'm here to fix it:

1st lesson:

The Constitution is the document used to define how our government is formed. It specifically details how powers are delegated amongst the branches and entities in our government. In it, we find a discussion and delegation of the three general powers of the federal government, summarized as such: regulate interstate commerce, protect our borders, and conduct foreign relations.

Now, that list is all-inclusive. There are no other powers invested in the federal government.

As a matter of politics, some concluded that a list of specific prohibitions was required. This became our Bill of Rights. This title is a misnomer. It doesn't list our rights. As Hamilton stated in Federalist Letter #84, they are "various exceptions to powers not granted." They specifically prohibit the federal government from doing things they have no power to do.

As you look at the Bill of Rights, pay special attention to the wording:

I. "Congress shall make no law..."
II. "... the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed."
III. "No soldier shall..."
IV. "The right of the people ... shall not be violated, ..."
V. "No person shall be held to answer..."

etc.

Now, in my opinion, that does not speak to me. It, in my opinion, speaks to the federal government and limits its actions. When looking at the definition and limitations placed on the federal government in the body of the Constitution, we find no way that a strict reading of the Constitution could have allowed the above actions.

Unfortunately, as Hamilton also said, this Bill of Rights has become a colorable pretext to claim more powers than were granted. The Bill of Rights has ceased to be a protector of our God-given rights, and has become a means by which the government has claimed powers it does not legally have.

So, kids, when you hear someone talk about Constitutional rights, remind them loudly that we have no Constitutional rights. We have a listing of specific restrictions on federal government actions. This listing has been used by those power-hungry people in DC to increase the power of the federal government, and to convince the people of the US that we have to petition the government for rights we already enjoy.

We have every right imaginable, as long as it doesn't interfere with the rights of others. We do not need to go to the federal government to look for a right to teach our children about sex.

Stay tuned for our next lesson: Privacy != Right to Abortion...

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