US v The People of the United States

Updated: January 19, 2013

By Mr. Twisted.

Sounds like a Supreme Court case, doesn’t it?

Well, though US v People of the United States could very well end up in a battle at our courts’ highest level, the simple fact is that this case was already decided over 200 years ago.

Back in the later parts of the 18th century, a significant number of Americans (and even some Europeans, as well) developed a line of thinking that held to an ideology of basic, inherent rights of individuals. These rights were not granted by any earthly authority, nor were they voted on by majorities—they pre-existed.

This notion would of course bear itself out in a violent manner in what we have come to know as the American Revolution. The event that cost the lives of over 25,000 Americans was the culmination of the conflict between the rule of men by men and the idea that men could—and should—govern themselves. The idea of self-government was a philosophy built on the concept that certain aspects of life were not privileges or gifts based on some type of merit system, but rather that they were already part of man from birth.

Interestingly enough, though these men who worked diligently on this ideology (and were prepared to sacrifice everything for it) were by no means divine or perfect, it is in fact their flaws and misgivings that would bear out some of the most fascinating aspects of this great experiment known as America. They didn’t, for example, get it all exactly right to begin with. Yet they had the foreknowledge to understand that disagreements would arise and that a system of government that could accommodate those conflicts was needed.

However, through all of the arguments that would form the American government (and there were many—some of which still exist today), an underlying theme endured amidst the turmoil. Namely, that the American government was not one that existed to grant people certain rights or privileges, but rather the opposite—that it was to exist for the purpose of ensuring the people didn’t have those rights taken away from them. This methodology differed greatly from that of a monarchy in that it wasn’t a king (or his agents) granting his subjects privileges to act within his kingdom—it was the people who allowed the king (or his agents) to sit in a position that existed solely for the reasons of protecting their rightsConstitution1

Some would argue that the king or his court would then not be needed because, if it only existed to prevent rights from being taken, wouldn’t the people be better off without him? It was here that those in America’s foundation knew that human nature is, unfortunately, flawed. We tend to take each other’s things—tools, cars, wives, etc.—and, without some kind of objective arbiter, the physically strongest of any given group would inevitably end up with all the cool stuff.

That objective arbiter would, naturally, need to remain objective. How to accomplish that, given the aforementioned flawed human nature? By crafting a document that outlines what the arbiter can and cannot do that cannot be changed by said arbiter. The document would be the basis for all of the decisions made for conflict between ideologies of the people.

But—and this is a big but and of the utmost importance—the entire underlying intent for this document was not for the purpose of outlining what people could and could not do, but rather what the government could and could not do.

This document is known of course as the United States Constitution; the writers of which painstakingly crafted it to reflect the idea that it was government—not man—who needed limitations. This is, though a seemingly basic concept for many reading this, a notion that is altogether lost on a great many people who not only should know better, but have sworn oaths stating that they do.

There are a great many political arguments in this country that seem to be only making the chasm between groups wider and harder to overcome. Many of these discussions have individuals on both sides who are highly educated and very knowledgeable on the subject they are arguing for or against. Yet at the core of each fight—of nearly every single clash of political ideologies—lays a misunderstanding of what “rights” are and what the Constitution represents. There is a growing abundance of individuals who firmly believe that it is the government in control and deciding what we can and cannot do rather than the other way around.

constitution“The purpose of the Constitution is to limit the federal government, not the American people.”

These words represent more than a catchy campaign slogan or political rhetoric. They embody the difference between a rule of people who change their minds with the direction of the wind and the concept of rights being born with men—not granted to them.

Everyone who holds a political office or joins the military swears an oath to something. It’s not to a king, a president, or any elected official—it’s to the Constitution of the United States of America. Consider that oath wisely and what it represents the next time you view a politician or, in case you are in one of those positions, your own job description. Who—or what—people define as the arbiter of rights defines a great deal of the fights we now face in our country that may get worse before they get better.







  1. Uncle Buster

    January 19, 2013 at 6:13 am

    “The purpose of the Constitution is to limit the federal government, not the American people.”

    The only way to get this concept through to our so-called “leaders” and to a boat-load of our fellow so-called “citizens” is via the Bitch Slap. Sorry…but it has come to that.

    We’re so irrevocably polarized in the country now that I doubt there is any other way out other than just having a go at each other again.

  2. Daniel Belin

    January 19, 2013 at 3:27 pm

    As Mr. Twisted said, we must all remember that government comes from the people. As individuals, we enter into a “social contract”; we give up certain things—land, property, some freedom—in order to form a collective which will enforce certain things which individuals alone cannot. As soon as a government and those who serve it forget that the Government is simply a result of the people willing it to exist, tyranny will occur or the Government shall reform.

    Government is broken as soon as it becomes the benefactor of the people instead of the people’s beneficiary.

  3. leftoftheboom

    January 19, 2013 at 7:36 pm

    The problem is the people. Government did not get broken overnight and those who would take the freedoms we enjoy did not magically get there. The individual voter has sat back and without much thought, elected representatives who have made the best sales pitch. That sales pitch is crafted and guided by the same individuals that craft all the media in the nation. The people feel informed because they are told they have been and they look no further.

    State and Federal Representatives over recent years have waged internal battles to remap the election districts to ensure the vote remains in their favor. An estimated 35 to 40 percent of voters simply check partly line vote and think no further about it. Congress has a proven track record for spending votes as they are paid by special interest groups and everyone looks the other way because their attention was diverted to something new and interesting. Sandy Hook was a criminal event that while sad for the people of that town, had nothing to do with gun law, national events, or even required a public response. Yet the President, who we assume is supposed to be busy working for us, took the time to visit and has spent the last weeks getting face time talking about guns when the budget was the issue.
    Simple math tells us that Sandy Hook is an anomaly not an indicator. You have a better odds playing the lottery than losing your kid to an event like this but since the media spends 24/7 detailing every single event, it becomes a national event because we hear about nothing else. People believed that H.G. Wells radio broadcast of “War of the Worlds” was real. So we are taught fear because we see ourselves in Sandy Hook.

    I am not a conspiracy theorist but I firmly believe that there is a targeted response set up when there is something that Washington does not want any attention focused on. We are approaching a budget issue that is going to hurt the people and the nation and right when the entire nation should be focusing on it, we have a “national tragedy” that focuses all attention somewhere else. How does an illusionist work their magic tricks? They convince you to look somewhere else and focus on the wrong thing.

    I don’t say the government had anything to do with what happened at Sandy Hook. I do think they were grateful that the media had a nice juicy story to take attention away from Washington. And I am willing to be that phone calls were made to ensure it was the lead story everywhere.

    You give me a camera and airtime and I can turn anything into a nationwide event that focuses attention where I want it. And since we cannot make the media look at what we NEED to see, we never know what happened until it is too late. EVERY TIME there is an important issue going on in Washington the media pounces and focuses on whatever story will garner the attention of the nation away from what needs to be done.

    Over 40,000 people are killed each year in auto accidents. The death of 26 people is not enough to make a statistical blip against the deaths that take place. It was not a national event until the media and Washington made it one and nicely sidestepped the coverage of the budget crisis.

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