Read the Bills Act Coalition

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

The Constitution and the Constitution Party

One of the best discussions I had yesterday while volunteering at the polls was one with Eli Jones and his father about the Constitution Party, their campaign and the future of government. If you don’t know Eli Jones is a 19 year old “statesman” who was running for The Board of Supervisors in yesterday’s election. Eli is an impressive man who has been involved in the Constitution Party for some years and is well on his way to having a successful career in politics, if he so chooses. For those of you that don’t the Constitution Party is an independent party that advocates a biblical interpretation of the Constitution and has seven steps they advocate:

Seven Principles of the Constitution Party are:
1. Life: For all human beings, from conception to natural death;
2. Liberty: Freedom of conscience and actions for the self-governed individual;
3. Family: One husband and one wife with their children as divinely instituted;
4. Property: Each individual's right to own and steward personal property without government burden;
5. Constitution: and Bill of Rights interpreted according to the actual intent of the Founding Fathers;
6. States' Rights: Everything not specifically delegated by the Constitution to the federal government is reserved for the state and local jurisdictions;
7. American Sovereignty: American government committed to the protection of the borders, trade, and common defense of Americans, and not entangled in foreign alliances.

Although most conservatives would agree with these principles, where I differ from the Constitution Party is in the implementation of the constitution and literal interpretation (getting the meaning for the words used at the time they were used only.) The Constitution has to be a living document for it to work in a free society. If the Constitution does not adapt, it in a sense, becomes the “dictator” in its carrying out and the citizens become beholden and ruled by a given interpretation at a given time by given group of people. This paradigm shift of the Constitution is where there problem lays with defining things in rigid terms. The Constitution as it stands now was not created in a day but over many years and twenty-seven subsequent amendments to the original document. If we use a literal interpretation of the Constitution, do we strike down those amendments since the “amended” that document? Or do you only pick and choose the Amendments we like and strike down the ones we do not? Amendments that include the Bill of right(1-10), abolition of Slavery(13), Women’s right to vote(19), Prohibition and the end of prohibition (18 and 21st) or income tax (16). By reading the Constitution Party’s platform, it seems they want to repeal only those amendments that they disagree with and that is a slippery slope to start down. The Constitution has its own provisions on how this great document should and can be changed, by the people, at any given time and if we believe in the constitution we should let the document work as intended and not to a personal view. The great thing about the Constitution and the US is the Freedom it gives to all Americans, whether we agree or disagree, in the pursuit of happiness without dictatorial rule. This is the Constitutional we all should fight for, a document created by some but protesting all who hold democracy dear to there hearts…even those darn liberals!

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