Saturday, April 02, 2005

Another Crossroad

Once again, America finds itself at another crossroad along the Path to Destiny.

Just a few short months ago, a similar intersection was approached: the Presidential Election of 2004.

Fortunately, America made a proper decision, choosing to take a path that might, just might lead us along a closer path the Founders had laid out for us.

Without digressing into partisan politics, suffice it to say that America chose a more morally conservative road to its future.

And then, Terri Schiavo died.

Her death has touched off a debate that is still in its formative stages. And yet, the substance of the debate reaches down into parts of the American Psyche that we all would rather leave alone.

This very fact alone will cause many Americans to turn away from the debate and thus remove their voices from the national discourse that is sure to follow.

For others, it will enflame the innermost passions of who we really are. By this I mean who we are AS INDIVIDUALS.

The issues surrounding Terri’s death are powerful enough to rip off the veneer of our public selves and reveal who we are at the core.

Many shall scream about government intrusion, states’ rights, federalist hypocrisy, religious extremism, judicial arrogance and so on.

These and other issues will be brought to the forefront when the Senate attempts to bring judicial nominees to a vote on the Senate floor.

The matter here is simply one of education. In other words if more people actually knew what is in the Constitution, this would silence the controversy.

A brief look at our nation’s founding documents will reveal what is truly at the center of the forthcoming debate.

Our Founders felt it necessary to declare in writing the reasons for separating from the increasing oppression of British rule. In the Declaration of Independence we find this passage:

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. --That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, --That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.”

So our Founders recognized that certain of our rights are 1) given to us by our Creator and 2) they are unalienable: incapable of being alienated, surrendered, or transferred

The Founders also stated that of a form of Government “becomes destructive” it is the right of the people to alter it.

How did they intend on doing that? We find that answer at the beginning of the Constitution:

“We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”

According to the Founders, their purpose in ordaining and establishing the Constitution was to do the following:

to form a more perfect Union
establish Justice
insure domestic Tranquility
provide for the common defence
promote the general Welfare
secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity

It is the right and responsibility of the American electorate to “alter” their government when it “becomes destructive” to the “certain unalienable Rights” of its citizens.

Remember: “Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed” ?????

Laying aside partisan politics and the ubiquitous demagoguery that is sure to spew forth from Washington, the heart of the debate caused by the Terri Schiavo case is simply one of Separation of Powers outlined in our Founding Documents.

This is not a debate of government intrusion, states’ rights, federalist hypocrisy, or religious extremism, but it is ultimately a CONSTITUTIONAL QUESTION.

I submit to you that the Judicial Branch of the government has stepped beyond the scope of its authority.

To wit:

Article. I. U.S. Constitution
Section 1.

"All legislative Powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives. "


Article. III.
Section. 1.

"The judicial Power of the United States, shall be vested in one supreme Court, and in such inferior Courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish. The Judges, both of the supreme and inferior Courts, shall hold their Offices during good Behaviour"

The Federal Court system is under the authority of the U.S. Congress. Congress, the duly elected representatives of the People, has the power to dictate to every court in America EXCEPT THE SUPREME COURT.

In ignoring the legislation from Congress asking the Federal courts to review the facts of the Schiavo case, the Federal Judiciary committed insubordination.

THAT is at the heart of this case.

Also at the heart of this case is the immediate result of that insubordination: the violation of Terri Schiavo’s “due Process” rights as afforded in the 5th and 14th Amendments to the Constitution

Amendment V

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.


Section 1.

All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

The over-reaching of the Federal Judiciary is highlighted by a comment made by Howard Fineman on MSNBC’s “Countdown with Keith Olberman”:

“this may be a different situation because in the intervening decades the judiciary has taken on such a larger role, almost a legislative role in our lives and that's what sort of invited this contest that's about to take place. “—Howard Fineman, on MSNBC’s “Countdown” March 31, 2005

What is desperately needed is for us to divorce ourselves, as much as possible, from the passions incurred by this event and to focus our energies on affecting a REBALANCING OF POWERS among the Three Branches of Government.

That is truly the only way to ensure that we never find ourselves at this particular crossroad again.


Post a Comment

<< Home