Wednesday, March 08, 2006

The Worst Case Scenario

Preamble to the Declaration of Independence.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable 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 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.
Prudence, indeed, will dictate that governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shown, that mankind are more
disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.
But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security.

The words of that last paragraph echo around the blogosphere in many variations. Many wonder aloud if it's time to consider armed resistance! While I do not yet agree, should this course continue, this vast effort to take all rights and most income away from most of the people in order to create a class of nobles and elites, George Bush will come to be seen as no better, and no less mad than King George III.

There is a misunderstanding of the Constitution among many people. It does not grant rights to the citizens. It conditionally delegates some limited rights to the government, and specifically prohibits the government from infringing on others.

Therefore, the argument that is often heard from Bushites and Neocons that "The Constitution does not grant a right to privacy" is a complete, deliberate and intentional lie. The constitution does not grant the government any particular right to infringe on your privacy, save as an unavoidable consequence of performing duties it is entrusted with.

The NeoCons have been targeting the right to privacy - and every other inalienable right you have - since the Gingrich "Contract with America." There has been a consistent policy of deliberately passing laws that intentionally violate the Constitution in the name of protecting children and fetus. I could respect the sincerity of such beliefs if they were consistent with other beliefs, but as the expressed attitude towards other policies that are literally life and death for indisputably living people all comes down to "Kill 'em, Kill 'em all", I dismiss their arguments as the fig leaf they are.

Roe v. Wade is a roadblock to persistent Government attempts to establish a right to invade your privacy as a matter of course, to monitor your medical status, for example, or to read the contents of your lawyers files. They no doubt wish the right to bug the confessional and subpoena your minister to testify against you.

These are the things that defeating Roe v. Wade will make possible. And it will not prevent abortions. Abortion will simply go underground. It will be more dangerous, and it will be one more disconnection between the will of the government and the will of the people, for the vast majority of the citizenry support a woman's right to self-determination, or perhaps more reasonably, understand that it's her responsibility to make such decisions, no matter what your beliefs or my faith may say about it.

In fact, Roe v. Wade recognizes that some matters are inherently private matters and there is no legitimate reason why anyone should be able to poke about in a doctor's records - or yours - to establish whether or not a crime has been committed.

This is a terribly inconvenient law for a would-be tyranny. It forestalls all kinds of useful fact-finding. It is disturbingly difficult to find out about subversion and sedition.

This was quite apparent to our founders; they thought it more valuable, though, to take a few risks in order to counter what they saw as the gravest threat to a brand new sort of civil order -
a government who's most natural enemy is the individual rights and liberties of the People.

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