Category Archives: Constitution

Is the U.S. Truly a Democracy or Republic?

So often we Americans refer to our nations as a Democracy. But this is not entirely true. If it were a true Democracy everyone would vote on every law and there would be no need for a legislature. The United States is closer to the true meaning of a Democratic Republic as it is a hybrid between the two concepts. Our founding fathers cleverly took the best of both concepts to devise what they hoped would be a perfect nation. To keep it honest they created three branches of government and divided the power equally among them with checks and balances to limit the power of any branch from overwhelming the others. They also devised elections to be held frequently enough to make it difficult for any one person or group of people to become too powerful. Yet over the years and centuries legislators and those in power have found workarounds in the power limitations designed by the founding fathers. Continue reading

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“War Powers Act” Repeatedly Ignored by Presidents

Article I, Section Eight Clause 11 of the Constitution says that “The Congress shall have power… To declare war…” In Article II, Section 2 the Constitution says “The President shall be commander in chief of the Army and Navy of the United States, and of the militia of the several states, when called into the actual service of the United States…” Clearly the authors of the Constitution intended that Congress should have the sole responsibility for declaring war and that the President would have the power to command the troop once war has been declared, a clear division of power regarding war. Over the years the presidency has gained more and more power to engage in military actions independent of Congress primarily because a single person can response quicker to military emergencies. Towards the end of the Vietnam conflict Americans had enough of police actions so Congress pass the War Powers Resolution (Act) in 1973. Continue reading

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Vision for a New Nation

It doesn’t take a stretch of the imagination to agree that our government has strayed far from the vision our Founding Fathers had for this nation. So what can we say was the vision of our Founding Fathers? Some wanted a government that somewhat resembled British rule and others who wanted the exact opposite. The Declaration of Independence and the framing of the Constitution and Bill of Rights amendments express the consensus conclusion that the new government should have distributed powers consisting of very cleverly conceived checks and balances allowing no single person or branch of government too much power. The other consensus was that the government should promote the best overall well being of all citizens through elective representative who would do exactly that, represent the best interests of their constituents. Continue reading

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Do American Juries Dispense Justice?

One major problem is that most jurors are by in large ignorant of the technicalities of law and trial procedures. Both the prosecuting and defense attorneys know this and try to use this ignorance to their advantage. They often appeal the the jury’s emotional sense rather than the legal merits of the case. It is a judge’s primary responsibility to make sure the two lawyers follow the technicalities of the law when the other attorney raises an objection. He does little to enlighten the jury of such legal technicalities leaving it to the two lawyers to spin the case in their favor. There are obviously better lawyers than others, so depending upon the ability of each lawyer a case can be won or lost based upon his or her skill at outmaneuvering the other lawyer and influencing the jury. Continue reading

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Free Expression by Personal Wealth

Last week, on April 2, 2014, the Supreme Court ruled in McCutcheon v. FEC that a single donor can give up to $3.6 million in one election cycle, money that political parties and other political organizations, PACs, and Super PACs can now funnel into aiding individual candidate who still have campaign limits as well as to ballot initiatives. This is a 30 fold increase over what an individual could previously contribute. I have a larger problem with large political contributions being a 1st Amendment protected free expression. Protected free expression implies expressions publicly expressed without consequence. In order to protect the expression of donations as in the 1st Amendment there must be something needing protection. Continue reading

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Is Pro-Choice Biblical?

Anti-abortionists say that Pro-Choice means you are pro-abortion and are for killing fetuses.  For many Pro-Choice advocates nothing could be further from the truth.  Pro-Choice simply meant having the right to choose to have an abortion or not to have … Continue reading

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Citizens United – Giving Corporations same Free Expression Rights as Citizens

I read the following article by Laura Bonham, a small business owner, which mirrors my sentiments upon the Supreme Court’s ruling on Citizens United which has enshrined corporations the same “rights” as ordinary citizens in the Constitution.  I don’t do … Continue reading

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Freedom of Choice

Our nation was established on the principle that all men are equal and endowed with the fundamental right of freedom of choice.  This is expressed in the Declaration if Independence as well as the Bill of Rights.  That is what … Continue reading

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Keeping Fire Arms out of the hands of More Criminals, Ex-Cons and Minors

Shocking mass killings make the big headlined. But in fact they represent an almost insignificant portion of the approximately 11,000 human beings killed by fire arms in America annual. Gang shootings, robberies, hold ups, and other crimes and accidents as will as law enforcement actions all too numerous to report or even care about are the primary sources of gun violence and deaths. Gun related crimes must be dealt with seriously and in a way to deter further gun related crimes. Continue reading

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Is it Constitutional to Legislate Morality?

A case is made from history and the Declaration of Independence that it was the wish of our Founding Fathers to keep the church separated from the state. It is even suggested that Christian doctrine supports the argument that morality should not be forced upon people. In a society where everyone’s right to free expression is guaranteed, religious morality cannot be forced upon others with different backgrounds through legislation. Continue reading

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The Right to Bear Arms – Did Founding Fathers Intend it for All?

Was the 2nd Amendment added to the Constitution by our founding fathers to make sure that the public could arm itself against a tyrannical government? Or did the founding fathers design the Constitution with the flexibility to accommodate change to avoid a tyrannical government? What is the most reasonable reason for incorporating the 2nd Amendment? Continue reading

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The President’s Power to Declare War

Because the United States has the most powerful military in the world, the power of the President to declare war makes him the most powerful man in the world. That much power in the hands of a single man can make for dangerous situations. Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. It makes it too easy for the US to become a bully country. Continue reading

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The Right to Bear Arms – Or Not

The 2nd amendment to the Constitution states:  “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.“ In 2008 and 2010, the Supreme … Continue reading

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