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10/20/2017 1:01:18 AM
9/22/2017 12:11:25 AM
Posted: 8/31/2005 2:25:45 AM EDT
With all of the talk of 'suspension of civil rights' and 'for the common good' in NO, what do you think?

I am of the opinion that the Bill of Rights is sacred; it is an enumeration of rights, not a granting of rights that can be taken away at government's whim (no matter how noble it may seem to them at the time). While it's easy to 'allow' the citizens their rights during peacetime and prosperity, it speaks volumes whether those same citizens retain those rights during times of hardship.

Unfortunately, just as we have been under a 'state of emergency' since God knows how long, just so that Presidents can keep making Executive Orders, the powers that be seem to think that simple declarations can temporarily nullify the Bill of Rights.

No single disaster or situation, no matter how horrible, is worth the surrender of your personal liberties. That is what used to make this country great. Now, it seems we have a government who is only too happy to artificially revoke these liberties, and a citizenry that will give them up just because they were told to.

Link Posted: 8/31/2005 2:31:01 AM EDT
Kinda sad to think that the government "grants" us fundamental rights that people died for.
Link Posted: 8/31/2005 2:44:11 AM EDT
Civil rights can never be revoked - unless you allow them to be.

They're no one's for the taking. You may fight and lose, or die, but no one says you have to submit.
Link Posted: 8/31/2005 3:26:35 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/31/2005 3:49:56 AM EDT by mr_wilson]
A common misconception among the American people is that their rights come from the Constitution. Even lawyers and judges are guilty of believing this, oftentimes suggesting that whether a right exists or not depends on whether it is listed in the Constitution. Law-enforcement agents read criminal suspects “their constitutional rights,” which leads some people to infer that the Constitution is the actual source of people’s rights.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

Suppose the Bill of Rights had not been enacted. Would that mean that people would not have the rights that are enumerated in those amendments?

No, it would not mean that. The existence and protection of those rights did not depend on the passage of the Bill of Rights. The reason lies in the rationale and purpose of the original Constitution.

It is important to recognize that not only did the Constitution call the federal government into existence, the type of government it brought into existence was the most unusual in history. Why? Because it was a government of very limited powers – powers that were expressly enumerated within the document itself – and because it was the citizenry who were imposing the limits on their own government officials.

To ensure that the federal government did not become a destroyer of people’s rights, however, the Framers used the Constitution to expressly limit the powers of the newly formed government.

The Framers could easily have called into existence a government whose powers were omnipotent. For example, they could have said,

Believing that a government is needed to do good, the federal government that is hereby called into existence shall have the power to enact whatever laws and to take whatever action federal officials deem necessary to accomplish that end.

Notice that if the Framers had done that, the Constitution could still have enabled people to democratically elect their public officials. In such a case, then, we would have had a democratically elected government with omnipotent powers – a democratic dictatorship.

Thus, in bringing into existence a government of enumerated powers, the Framers believed it was unnecessary to enumerate people’s rights.

In their minds, it was unnecessary for the Constitution to prohibit the federal government from violating freedom of speech, for example, because the power to do that wasn’t listed among the enumerated powers of the federal government anyway.

As another example, with respect to the federal criminal-justice system the Framers believed that it was unnecessary to list such guarantees as due process of law and trial by jury because everyone knew that such procedural rights, which had been carved out by the British people over centuries of struggle against tyranny, were a well-established part of any civilized criminal-justice system. If the Constitution didn’t expressly provide the power to abridge such rights in a criminal prosecution, then such power could not be exercised.

The reason for the Bill of Rights

So, given a government of very limited powers – powers that were expressly enumerated – why did the American people amend the Constitution with ten amendments so soon after the original Constitution was enacted?

The answer is simple: Unlike Americans today, our ancestors didn’t trust government or government officials.

That in fact was the mindset of the Framers as they put together the Constitution – that the biggest threat to their freedom and well-being lay with their own government. They had seen what their own previous government (that is, the British government) had done to them when they had been British citizens, and they also were familiar with the countless historical examples of governments that capriciously incarcerated or even killed their subjects, arbitrarily seized their property, or otherwise infringed upon their rights.

Thus, Americans demanded the Bill of Rights as an “insurance policy” – one that was designed to ensure there were no misunderstandings among government officials, albeit democratically elected, that their limited, enumerated powers did not encompass the abridging of such fundamental rights as freedom of speech, freedom of the press, and the right to keep and bear arms, or such important procedural rights as due process of law, right to counsel, and trial by jury.

Opponents of the Bill of Rights responded with an obvious critique: expressly enumerating some rights for protection from federal assault would suggest that other rights remained unprotected. Thus, they argued, it would be better not to list any rights whatsoever. Since the original document didn’t empower the government to abridge such rights anyway, no one needed to be concerned.

Fortunately, the proponents of the Bill of Rights won the day, because for all practical purposes, in the 20th century the federal government broke out of the original enumerated-powers straitjacket that the Framers had imposed on it. The idea of a government of limited powers became an anachronism, with the federal government’s gradually adopting general powers to act in the “general welfare” of the people. What has ended up limiting them has been the express language of restriction contained in the Bill of Rights and an independent judiciary willing to enforce it.

If the Congress and the state legislatures had failed to enact the Bill of Rights, there is little doubt that today, in the name of the war on poverty, war on drugs, war on communism, or war on terrorism, the federal government would be depriving people of intellectual freedom, religious freedom, due process of law, right to counsel, trial by jury, and the other rights listed in the Bill of Rights. (Keep in mind that, although the federal government is depriving Americans of due process of law, right to counsel, and trial by jury in the name of the “war on terrorism,” so far the courts are ruling against it on the basis of the Bill of Rights.) Thank goodness for the wisdom and foresight of those who did not trust government and who insisted on the passage of the Bill of Rights.

The Ninth Amendment

What about the argument of those who said that by listing certain rights, the inference would be that unlisted rights would lack protection?

That’s what the Ninth Amendment was all about. It reads as follows:

The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

Acknowledging the arguments of those who were resisting the Bill of Rights, James Madison argued that the Ninth Amendment was designed to address their concerns:

It has been objected also against a bill of rights, that, by enumerating particular exceptions to the grant of power, it would disparage those rights which were not placed in that enumeration; and it might follow by implication, that those rights which were not singled out, were intended to be assigned into the hands of the General Government, and were consequently insecure. This is one of the most plausible arguments I have ever heard urged against the admission of a bill of rights into this system; but, I conceive, that it may be guarded against. I have attempted it, as gentlemen may see by turning to the last clause of the fourth resolution.

Again, the purpose of the Constitution was not to give people rights but instead to bring a federal government into existence – a government with very limited powers. Therefore, it makes no sense to look for a right in the Constitution, given that the purpose of the Constitution was not to give people rights in the first place. (We’ll leave the issue of the Court’s oftentimes distorted understanding of rights to another day.)

The correct issue with respect to government power, then, is whether the federal government has been authorized by the Constitution to exercise some power, for example, a power to infringe on people’s rights, whether such rights are listed or not.

A good example of this principle involves the right to privacy. While some have argued that privacy is not a fundamental and inherent right, it would be improper to oppose its protection on the ground that it is not expressly protected in the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

That is, since the Constitution did not empower the federal government to violate people’s right to privacy, the fact that the right to privacy is not expressly mentioned in the Bill of Rights is irrelevant, especially given the language of the Ninth Amendment.

Here’s how Justice Arthur Goldberg put it in the famous privacy case of Griswold v. Connecticut, which involved a state statute prohibiting the use of contraceptives:

The language and history of the Ninth Amendment reveal that the Framers of the Constitution believed that there are additional fundamental rights, protected from governmental infringement, which exist alongside those fundamental rights specifically mentioned in the first eight constitutional amendments....

To hold that a right so basic and fundamental and so deep-rooted in our society as the right of privacy in marriage may be infringed because that right is not guaranteed in so many words by the first eight amendments to the Constitution is to ignore the Ninth Amendment and to give it no effect whatsoever. Moreover, a judicial construction that this fundamental right is not protected by the Constitution because it is not mentioned in explicit terms by one of the first eight amendments or elsewhere in the Constitution would violate the Ninth Amendment....

Nor do I mean to state that the Ninth Amendment constitutes an independent source of rights protected from infringement by either the States or the Federal Government. Rather, the Ninth Amendment shows a belief of the Constitution’s authors that fundamental rights exist that are not expressly enumerated in the first eight amendments and an intent that the list of rights included there not be deemed exhaustive.


(The reason the Court was addressing the Ninth Amendment in a case involving a state statute is that it had previously held in a series of decisions that the Fourteenth Amendment implicitly incorporated the rights and guarantees in the Bill of Rights and applied them to the states. Thus, if privacy is a right protected from federal infringement, it is also a right protected from state infringement.)

It is not difficult to see how far we have strayed from the original vision that formed the foundation of our nation, and it’s all been done without even the semblance of a constitutional amendment.

Today, the presumption is that federal officials are empowered to do pretty much whatever they want, exercising countless powers that are not enumerated in the original list.

The only restriction on the exercise of such omnipotent power is the Bill of Rights, but even that has been seriously eroded, especially with respect to search and seizure and gun-ownership rights, and especially as part of the government’s “war on drugs.”

We can only hope that the federal courts continue to hold unconstitutional the government’s “temporary” suspension of habeas corpus, right to counsel, due process of law, and trial by jury as part of its “war on terrorism.”

By the way, waging wars on drugs and terrorism are not among the government’s enumerated powers listed in the Constitution.

Who is responsible for this travesty? Ultimately, the American people are responsible. As our ancestors well understood, the type of people who gravitate to governmental power will inevitably thirst for ever-increasing power, a phenomenon against which our ancestors tried to protect us with the enumerated-powers doctrine of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. The American people have permitted federal officials to indulge their thirst for power by letting them break free of the constitutional constraints that originally bound them. What we need in America is a rebirth of freedom, one in which the American people restore the vision of freedom and constitutionally limited government that formed the foundation of our nation.

The above was written August 11, 2005 by Jacob Hornberger and should be required reading as many haven't a clue what or where rights come from.....


Mike
Link Posted: 8/31/2005 3:31:47 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/31/2005 3:32:32 AM EDT by DDiggler]
Almost 30% of respondents on this gun board believe that our rights are merely a privelege extended to us by our government.



ETA: I would like to see what those three people have to say.
Link Posted: 8/31/2005 3:34:23 AM EDT
Thank you, public school system. You are doing your job well.

Link Posted: 8/31/2005 3:49:26 AM EDT
Link Posted: 8/31/2005 3:51:28 AM EDT
Link Posted: 8/31/2005 3:53:51 AM EDT

Originally Posted By The_Beer_Slayer:
the ideals written on those pieces of paper by the founding fathers have benn dead for YEARS.

Your rights in this country are whatever the state and fed allow you to have. Try to exercise them outside their will and you WILL be dead or in jail. There are many cases to support that.

Try carrying a handgun without a license in CA or NJ. just as an example.

I will say it again, ideals are fine for debate, they seldom apply to the real world. this is not the country that was founded some 200 years ago. the only thing we share with it is the name.


As much as I hate to say it:

+1
Link Posted: 8/31/2005 4:25:04 AM EDT
What can you do to stem the tide? Obviously we can't discuss and relate to today the way rights were won and kept hundreds of years ago... but if you pass a law saying that martial law is unlawful, you are still giving government the power. You are asking them to validate that which they should have no say in. And once they do, it's just words, they have the precedence to say they have power over it, and can revoke that law at their whim.

I know that as citizens you have the right, actually a duty, to disobey unconstitutional law. This should include martial law and you should be willing to do whatever it takes to keep your rights secure. I have seen it posted several times now that "It's a natural disaster, get over it." I don't care if it's a natural disaster, a foreign army storming our cities or an alien invasion, you don't suspend the Constitution!

What do you do?
Link Posted: 8/31/2005 4:34:30 AM EDT

Originally Posted By The_Beer_Slayer:
the ideals written on those pieces of paper by the founding fathers have benn dead for YEARS.

Your rights in this country are whatever the state and fed allow you to have. Try to exercise them outside their will and you WILL be dead or in jail. There are many cases to support that.

Try carrying a handgun without a license in CA or NJ. just as an example.

I will say it again, ideals are fine for debate, they seldom apply to the real world. this is not the country that was founded some 200 years ago. the only thing we share with it is the name.






Mike

ps - this is indicative of the attitude that has brought us to this point in history
Link Posted: 8/31/2005 10:38:11 AM EDT

Originally Posted By The_Beer_Slayer:

Originally Posted By Wobblin-Goblin:
Thank you, public school system. You are doing your job well.




i voted granted by the .gov ONLY because that is the current reality in this country. it is not the correct answer but the realistic one.



If you allow yourself to be yolked, then don't squeal when the farmer demands you plow. No one that fought the yolking will come to your aid.

You do not have to live your life forfeiting your civil rights. Some people, when confronted with the choice, sit at the front of the bus - even when the consequences aren't clear and look bad. Others accept "reality" and have a seat at the back.
Link Posted: 8/31/2005 10:47:51 AM EDT
Your rights as a human being/citizen of the USA or whatever don't apply to you just because that piece of paper (constitution, bill of rights) says they do. Freedom is freedom. The paper spelling it out is a reminder for the fucks who would try and take it away.
Link Posted: 8/31/2005 10:50:35 AM EDT
Of course it can be revoked. That's what Marial Law/Emergency Declarations are all about.
Link Posted: 8/31/2005 10:54:04 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Bama-Shooter:
Of course it can be revoked. That's what Marial Law/Emergency Declarations are all about.




I disagree. They can try, but they were granted by God. He can take them away, or I can give them up, but no one else can take them from me. Now, they may take my life, but they will not take my rights.


TXL
Link Posted: 8/31/2005 10:57:10 AM EDT
uncle sam owns you and will do with you what he pleases


Link Posted: 8/31/2005 11:02:18 AM EDT

Originally Posted By TxLewis:

Originally Posted By Bama-Shooter:
Of course it can be revoked. That's what Marial Law/Emergency Declarations are all about.




I disagree. They can try, but they were granted by God. He can take them away, or I can give them up, but no one else can take them from me. Now, they may take my life, but they will not take my rights.


TXL



Blah, blah, blah. If the .gov shows up and declares Marial Law, basic civil rights are suspened.
Link Posted: 8/31/2005 11:06:29 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Bama-Shooter:

Originally Posted By TxLewis:

Originally Posted By Bama-Shooter:
Of course it can be revoked. That's what Marial Law/Emergency Declarations are all about.




I disagree. They can try, but they were granted by God. He can take them away, or I can give them up, but no one else can take them from me. Now, they may take my life, but they will not take my rights.


TXL



Blah, blah, blah. If the .gov shows up and declares Marial Law, basic civil rights are suspened.




And I'm sure you'll be representing them dressed in your finest.

Thanks

TXL
Link Posted: 8/31/2005 11:09:26 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/31/2005 11:09:37 AM EDT by SHIVAN]

Originally Posted By Bama-Shooter:
Of course it can be revoked. That's what Marial Law/Emergency Declarations are all about.



..Interesting thoughts.

Link Posted: 8/31/2005 11:11:06 AM EDT

Originally Posted By TxLewis:

Originally Posted By Bama-Shooter:

Originally Posted By TxLewis:

Originally Posted By Bama-Shooter:
Of course it can be revoked. That's what Marial Law/Emergency Declarations are all about.




I disagree. They can try, but they were granted by God. He can take them away, or I can give them up, but no one else can take them from me. Now, they may take my life, but they will not take my rights.


TXL



Blah, blah, blah. If the .gov shows up and declares Marial Law, basic civil rights are suspened.




And I'm sure you'll be representing them dressed in your finest.

Thanks

TXL



Nope. I'm on my own just like you. I just know how to recognize reality.
Link Posted: 8/31/2005 11:12:16 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Bama-Shooter:

Originally Posted By TxLewis:

Originally Posted By Bama-Shooter:
Of course it can be revoked. That's what Marial Law/Emergency Declarations are all about.




I disagree. They can try, but they were granted by God. He can take them away, or I can give them up, but no one else can take them from me. Now, they may take my life, but they will not take my rights.


TXL



Blah, blah, blah. If the .gov shows up and declares Marial Law, basic civil rights are suspened.



You are arguing a fine point. In your view rights are suspended, but that goes for the ones doing the 'suspending' as well.

In reality, basic God-given rights are never suspended. They only collide with the wishes and desires of others. The length that people must go to defend their rights depends on the length of reach of the other party.

Martial law means rule by force, in simple language. Which side has more? In this situation, it is a tough call, but regardless, the weaker force can fight back against the stronger. It is reality.
Link Posted: 8/31/2005 11:32:30 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Bama-Shooter:
Of course it can be revoked infringed. That's what Marial Law/Emergency Declarations are all about.



Fixed it.

That is, if you believe that civil rights are part of the basic human condition and belong to all people. Which is what this country was founded upon.
Link Posted: 8/31/2005 11:32:46 AM EDT
the BOR is not a source document, but rather an enumeration of pre-existing truths, as evidenced by the language of the preamble.

human rights, or the rights of an individual to live in the society of man, can never lawfully be waived, abrogated, or infringed.

civil rights, or the rights of an individual to act in the society of man, can be lawfully superseded on occasion, provided that this suspension is both temporary and neccessary to the maintenance of the continuation of these rights in the future. martial law during wartime is an example of this.
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