Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Constitution is ultimate authority

Constitution is ultimate authority

(My Clovis News Journal column for December 14, 2012.  Trying to speak to those who would be on the side of liberty if they can get free of certain obsessions.)

Are you among those torn between feeling you should support the government, and knowing it does wrong? 

Should you "render unto Caesar" anything that he, in his modern incarnation, demands?

Basically, to render unto Caesar what is Caesar's just means don't take, or keep, that which isn't yours. Don't steal. If you have someone else's property, give it back. Does your money automatically belong to the government just because someone passed a law permitting them to take it? Absolutely not. Should you pay for services you use, regardless of who provides them? Yes, you should. Should you be forced to pay for services you neither want nor need? If so, everyone should start sending me a monthly check for picking up litter, and for preaching liberty.

But what about submitting to government simply because it is the government? Do you have an obligation to obey every edict that comes from a government official simply because of his position? No.

In America no person, agency, or office is the governmental authority. The Constitution is. Those who refuse to abide by the letter and intent of that authority have no legitimate power over you. In fact by using coercion and violence on people who are harming no one else, and even against those who are doing "good work", they cause fear in good people and show themselves to be false authorities in violation of the Constitution.

Sure, the Constitution has its own problems, but as long as you choose to play the game, it is your rule book. If you seek political office, the Constitution is not to be "interpreted" to be more convenient for your ambitions. Once you violate any of its provisions, whether by trying to regulate immigration, by passing or enforcing "laws" against gun ownership or possession, or by regulating which substances people may introduce into their own bloodstream, you have lost all authority. No one has any obligation to honor or obey you any longer.

In America the Constitution was written to hobble the government, not to ensnare the people. Any ruling that goes against that higher power is a ruling that goes against the spirit of the Constitution- even if you approve. Those acts erode authority rather than enhancing it.

Every time this happens you can stop submitting, honoring, and complying- with a clear conscience.

If you feel called to support the earthly powers-that-be, don't misguidedly throw your support behind those who are in fact its worst enemy.


"The wrong hands"

One thing I hear from almost every "side" in the "gun debate" is this idea that "we" need to keep guns "out of the wrong hands".

Just whose hands are "wrong"?  And who is this "we" who'll be doing the "keep away"?  Government employees?  I laugh at the absurdity of that suggestion.

I suppose "the wrong hands" are those who want to hurt you.  If that's the case, cops and other government employees have the "wrongest" hands of all, along with the thuggish members of freelance gangs.  Don't make a distinction where none exists.

There is no possible way- NONE- to keep guns out of "the wrong hands" without also keeping them out of a lot of the right hands.  Even the "minor" layers of difficulties that any good person could easily pass through tend to dissuade a lot of people from going to the trouble to own or to carry a gun.  It adds expense to the cost of a gun, either in dollars or in time.  Since dollars are nothing but a placeholder for time you traded to someone else, there is no difference.  A lot of good people also don't like being treated like a criminal by a gang of demonstrable criminals- and then told by the brainless criminal drones with FBI computers whether or not they are "worthy" of defensive tools.  It is incredibly insulting.

And bad people will never be inconvenienced in the slightest.  They'll buy or steal what they want- whichever is easiest.

I would prefer to live in a society where guns are freely and openly available, with absolutely zero restrictions on anyone, so that more good people will not feel like criminals for owning and carrying weapons.  Good people outnumber the truly bad ones.  Any additional liberty will empower the good more than the bad (who already do whatever they feel like anyway).

So, if you are truly a pro-liberty person, stop giving any attention to the absurd "wrong hands" nonsense.  It makes you look like an anti-liberty bigot.