By Janice Daniels
Hard-hitting articles on today’s current events. Note: The opinions expressed herein are those of the author Janice Daniels and do not necessarily reflect those of MCU’s Board of Directors or members at large.
Were We Right to Write a Bill of Rights?
I had a few questions for a new friend I met at MiCPAC-2018, and again at UPCPAC this year http://mcu.today/. My new friend is the constitutional scholar who goes by the name Publius Huldah (Really she does. Check it out for yourself, at her blog site:
I asked her if there were any specific references in the Federalist Papers that address or further define the first amendment “Freedom of the Press” in the Bill of Rights.
Going on, I asked, “Was it possible that “Freedom” was therein somehow defined as the protection of the destruction of culture, government, society and spirituality?”
My final question to Publius Huldah was, “Does the definition of “The Press” somewhere include liars, seditionists, traitors, and enemies of our Constitution?”
She responded by referencing Alexander Hamilton in the Federalist 84, which is named Certain General and Miscellaneous Objections to the Constitution Considered and Answered.
I wanted to quote the source material from Alexander Hamilton in Federalist 84; however, I know that his writing style might confuse many and bore most of my readers, so I needed to extrapolate, consolidate and make some modern day sense of his writing (which is beyond brilliant, if you take the requisite time to actually read, study and decipher what he is saying)!
But wait, Publius Huldah did just that in her excellent answer to my original questions. She wrote back to me saying, “When a King claims total power over his subjects, as did King John I of England, a Bill of Rights is appropriate to carve out exceptions to that claim of total power. Thus, in 1215, the Barons forced King John I to sign the Magna Charta.
But our Constitution delegates only a small handful of powers to the federal government over the Country at large.
To add a bill of rights to such a Constitution creates a pretext to regulate to those inclined to usurp.”
“Pretext to regulate”
A concise definition of the word “pretext” can be found on an Internet search engine, as follows:
“A reason given in justification of a course of action that is not the real reason” (italics mine).
Although my original query was with regard to the “right” to a “Free Press” and how to define it, I now extend the conservation to another important “right” supposedly “protected” by the Bill of Rights: The Second Amendment “Right to Keep and Bear Arms,” and I ask, “How many Federal regulations are the good men of this country going to allow to be written before they determine that their “right to bear arms” has been Infringed upon?”
Well, let’s see. In my search for an answer, I found a “list” of Federal laws regarding firearms. It is nine pages long (I would wonder if it’s all inclusive).
Here is the list: http://fedcoplaw.com/html/federal_firearms_laws.html.
So, I ask, “Would 10 pages of firearm regulations be too many, promulgated by our Federal government on the pretext that the government has a “right” to regulate our Rights that are not to be infringed upon?”
As Alexander Hamilton opined in Federalist 84 … (in America), “the people surrender nothing; and as they retain everything they have no need of particular reservations.”
Publius Huldah lists the small handful of powers delegated to the American federal government herein:
Nowhere in this list does it indicate that the federal government has any right to a pretext to regulate the rights of the people regarding religion, assembly, gun ownership or a free press, to name a few, except in the Bill of Rights.
And so, I ask again: Were we right to write a Bill of Rights? Publius (Alexander Hamilton) didn’t think so, Publius Huldah doesn’t think so, and, upon reflection, neither do I.