Balancing Freedom & Governance

The greatest challenge of a civilized society is striking a balance between the need for governance and that of the freedoms and sovereignty of the citizen. As I have discussed in many other articles humans will never survive and thrive unless they work together. The balance between freedom and government is constantly strained. In life and in Daily governance there are competing interests. Those interests press the limits of the boundaries. The Founding Fathers of the United States set forth in the law, the rights of the citizens, with few constraints. The Constitution was crafted to assure that freedom and limit the overreach of the government.

The USA was built by staunch individuals who worked hard, they took their freedoms and liberty seriously. Every day they fought, sometimes physically to maintain those freedoms. Two hundred and forty plus years later we have lost sight of those struggles and how bad life is without the liberty and freedoms that they left to us.

Individualism creates strong self-sustaining people. Independent, they are able to “do things”. Individuals come together in a unit, tribe, clan, or society in order to pool resources and attain higher levels of living. People who come together with shared language, values, work ethic, and a common culture will inevitably outperform individuals and tribes which lack any of those binding forces. These cultures are drawn across ethnic, racial, and other lines. The unit has everything to do with all “being on the same team.” That is why assimilation is so critical. The failure to assimilate immigrants into a host culture sets the wheels in motion for discord, unrest, and eventually cultural suicide. (Click here to read the article on assimilation.)

I have constantly reiterated the fact that language is the core to what binds a nation, a society, a culture, and a people together. Without that, there is no connection, thoughtful dialogue, or advancement of the way of life for the unit. Bonded through language the unit may exercise it to institute structure and law. (Click here to read)

The Founding Fathers of the United States, created our foundational documents based upon similar ideas found in the constitutions of the Athenian, Roman, and the Netherland's Republics, and the Magna Carta. They designed the United States Constitution, a system of laws which constrained the powers of the government over its citizens.

Again, language is the key to understanding, education, and negotiation. You cannot establish rules when the two parties involved do not speak and comprehend the same language.

 

Citizen or Subject?

 It is unfortunate that most citizens of the United States do not even understand that they are citizens. In most nations around the world today, the people who live within the borders of an established nation are subjects. They are subject to the whims of the nation in which they live. Subjects have no rights which the government has not given.

The difference between a subject and a citizen is significant. In America the Constitution recognizes inherent rights given by God, not by the government. Those inherent rights are no small matter. There is a critical term within the Constitution; unalienable, often misstated as inalienable. The term unalienable or inalienable in the Constitution refers to the acknowledgement that the government did not give certain rights and therefore may not retract them. This is significant and far-reaching. Listening to news media personalities and government officials, it will become clearly evident that they do not understand this the constitution and the rights nor laws that it establishes.

Kathy Sheehan, mayor of Albany, NY, while speaking about illegal immigrants on Tucker Carlson’s show (on January 23, 2018) underscored the problem. During the discussion, Sheehan made a comment that speaks to the point. Speaking of illegal immigrants in the USA she said, “when you are here, you have constitutional rights.” Even when Carlson asserted that they are not citizens and have no rights under the Constitution she rejected the idea. The section is around 18 minutes in, see the video below.

Unfortunately, there is an undercurrent within the United States that has been heavily influenced by people and organizations with opposing beliefs from both in and outside of the USA. While some of those people genuinely believe that they are doing the right thing, they do so ignorant to the gift that the US Constitution assures all Americans. Listening to British citizens regularly speaking on matters of the USA and its laws; it becomes instantly obvious that they are making one of the most dangerous and common mistakes, working from their perspective without care to the facts immediately at hand.

British people are subjects. It has always been that way they know no other way. So, when arguing or debating a subject of rights or governance in the USA, they will get it wrong. They argue from a perspective that the government grants them their rights. They have completely missed the point that citizens of the USA have rights given by God not by the government. Those rights are set like concrete in the US Constitution and its Bill of Rights. Such an idea is alien to those from other nations.

Clearly a civilized society bound together by its language, culture, and shared values requires the rule law. In the United States that law is known as US Code. The USC established that criminal law requires proof beyond a reasonable doubt. There is no ruling class. There is no one is above the law in the USA. All men are created equal and recognized as such in the law. (Learn more about the US Code)

In 1215, in the meadow of Runnymede in England, the Magna Carta was signed. One of significant parts of the Magna Carta was that it allowed British subjects to own property. (Click here to read the article on the Magna Carta.) The difference between the right given to Britain's subjects is that the government has the power rescind that right at any time. The rights of the citizens recognized in the United States Constitution are unalienable.

Conclusion

The only way that US citizens will be able to guarantee that the government does not ignore or impede those rights is through transparency and citizen oversight. All security and safety are the responsibility of each individual citizen. Always remember as Machiavelli said there are no friends in politics. Vigilance is our best protection. Apathy cedes our rights to those who would take them from us.

(Click here to read the article on Machiavelli.)