yOur Rights Precede yOur Constitution

This is an excerpt from N. Awakening

Chapter 23.

On The Constitution

She thought about glory. It reminded her of history. John Renard’s expressions resonated in her ear:

  1.                 It was Columbus that began this warring progression—(In America)
  2.                 You now see. You now know.
  3.                 Our bombings are of his capitalism
  4.                 Because we have only evolved
  5.                 To hide his reality of property needs and selfish greed.

She began to gaze at her white topped bobber.

Mitchell continued the conversation, “The actual act of believing that our government was formed exclusively from the British and Magna Charta is unbelievable to me.”

“Because they’re not philosophers?” Nasha could tell that she had reached a part of Mitchell’s personality that pleased him.

“From Montesquieu, Hume, the Ancients, Locke and personal experience the American founders formulated much of our government framework.” He looked at her with serious eyes, “It’s a tragedy that high school teaches you to believe that our Constitution was created by the founders from scratch, barely referencing the Magna Charta and even Aristotle. In reality, the American founders simply cooked many of Montesquieu and Locke’s political ingredients, as they diligently studied the ancients and political history.” Mitchell exclaimed John Renard’s words:

  1.                 By ignoring the grosser truth of our past,
  2.                 so nationalism and American heroes thrive,
  3.                 we truly become ignorant and stupid,
  4.                 our heritage becomes irrelevant lies!

He joined Nasha in a peaceful gaze and slowly let his eyes come to concentrate on the movement of the water. He soaked his mouth with the suds of beer and tried to sense whether or not Nasha’s mind was mature enough for philosophy. She suddenly snapped her face toward Mitchell. She again felt that he was a martinet dragging her up the mountain slope. “Just catch a fish!”

Mitchell smiled because he thought she was being playful, “James Madison called Montesquieu ‘the oracle who is always consulted,’ and sure they argued about the details. What politician in America doesn’t argue over power?”

Nasha felt these new ideas replace her old ideas. Instantly, she glared at her bobber and despairingly affirmed the stillness. The grandchild felt as if she had just awoken from a dream. “Go on grandpa,” she gently declared as she stood, “I’m listening.” She looked out over the water and hoped for a strong wind. She desperately needed a change of pace, a change of peace. She became tired, as if the mountain she was climbing suddenly went vertical. As if she anticipated the difficult climb.

“Locke, for example, said that men have the right to ‘life, liberty and property’ and believed that the purpose of government was to ‘preserve himself, his liberty and property.’ Jefferson said that ‘all men are created equal’ well after Locke argued that ‘men being natural and free, equal and independent’ have rights. Checks and balances on government abuse came about partially through Locke’s argument for a limited government, since ‘as usurpation is the exercise of power which another has a right to, so tyranny is an exercise of power beyond right, which nobody can have a right to.’ Does Locke sound interesting?”

Nasha turned to Mitchell, “He sounds underrated. I hardly know anything about him and it seems like he was a great influence on the political evolution of the western world. What words did Montesquieu speak that corresponded to our Constitution and form of government?”

“Montesquieu wrote, ‘power must check power… When legislative power is united with executive power in a single person or in a single body of the magistracy, there is no liberty… Nor is there liberty if the power of judging is not separate from legislative power and from executive power.’ In his arguments, we clearly see these three bodies of government and comprehend their purposes.” Mitchell smacked his broken line. He decided to let it linger longer. He slowly stretched and continued, “Locke began the conversation by insisting that legitimate governments are based on ‘the consent of the governed’ in 1690 and he argued that ‘the people shall be the judge…’ thus,” he smacked the line again, “These two provided America’s philosophical foundation.”

Nasha thought about how humorous it would be if the mass media publicly proclaimed that our form of government is greatly due to the French. Suddenly, she looked for a meandering bobber and ignored her own, then questioned whether or not the hook had been wormed. She tugged her line and instantaneously her line tugged back. She fell into rapture, as if she were dreaming and excitedly pulled back her pole. The fish began to move toward the boat. She slowly reeled. Mitchell grabbed the net. Soon enough, the fish was in Nasha’s left hand with its mouth wide open. At a foot in length, the bass brought pride into Nasha’s heart. Mitchell took many pictures and soon Nasha laughed with delight. She talked to the bass. She stroked its scales. She admired its colors. She told it how beautiful it was and then with some hesitation, gently released it back into its environment. She smiled as it swam away.

They talked, laughed and decided to continue Mitchell’s polemic, “Philosophy, to me, is so interesting because it is not black and white. Philosophy cannot be proven as fact. We cannot truly say Aristotle’s view about gender and slavery is wrong.”[1]

Nasha lightly simpered as she looked back at Mitchell, “especially gender.” She added an eye of sarcasm as Mitchell smiled. She let her face fall into seriousness. She asked her heart, “Why hasn’t a woman been elected President in the land of the free? Is there a freer country?”

Mitchell thought about his private writing logs. He recalled his words that described his Self (most of the words he recalled describe people of Nobill hearts). Would he explain to his blood how to become Nobill? His soul spoke to his mind, “The Nobill are intoxicated by their dreams of creating an enlightened world—a world filled with freedom, opportunity and community.”

The air began to cool and Mitchell found words to close out the Constitutions’ philosophers, “I do not wish to be understood as the man describing every thorn on the historians’, pundits’ and government rose. But without examination of telling events, I fear you will forget the thorns and cut yourself once you grasp reality. I want you to be able to learn how to remove the withering petals…”

Nasha smiled at the thought of that fish. She felt like talking, “It’s important to know the foundation of our laws and Constitution, grandpa.” She appealed, “But isn’t it more important to decide whether or not this President or Congress or judges obeyed or destroyed the foundation?” Nasha’s eyes widened as if she was about to be broadsided by a semi, “Shouldn’t we talk about how the presidents’ actions could create a Constitutional crises?”[2]

Mitchell laughed delighted, “Yes!” He rushed his words as his face turned flush with pleasure, “About that framework, young one.” He soulfully sought to recognize her acumen, “Locke’s framework is very clear!” She leaned forward with anticipation as he seemed to lock into her eyes, “Man had rights before he had a government,” she narrowed her eyes to show displeasure about his gender based explanation. He excitedly exclaimed, “And the individual’s rights are more important than the government’s rights!”

She smiled from ear to ear and contemplated the depths of the discussion. Nasha marveled, “This framework must be quite troublesome for authoritarian rulers.”

“Yes! Yes. And Hume said, ‘There is not to be found, in all history, any miracle attested by a sufficient number of men, of such unquestioned good sense, education and learning, as to secure us against all delusion in themselves.’”

She spoke up, “One might surmise,” she paused to take a mental picture of his next facial expression, “Rulers would prefer that history be written otherwise.”[3]

[1] Of the many general approaches toward thought; four are worth metaphors: relativism, absolutism, universalism and Nobillism. The relativist constantly errs because s/he lives outside of reality and laughs at arguments from space—never able to see reality active on land. The absolutist errs because their truth consists of preaching into the mirror side of a two-way mirror—never seeing reality through the hidden window. The universalist errs because they climb into a bubble and admire the wall. The Nobill errs less often initially because s/he appreciates the fact that reality exists in and of itself. S/he spends their time comprehending reality and eventually approaches sanity—a real understanding of human existence, action and consequence. By the way, slavery and gender inequality are wrong.

[2] It is more important to argue whether we are in a Constitutional crisis, rather than how the Constitution was created. But if you don’t know what 1 is, then you couldn’t possibly know that 1 plus 1 equals 2.

[3] Now imagine the high school social studies teacher again took the last five minutes of class to ask students to respond to the following quote by Ayn Rand, “”The government was set to protect man from criminals—and the Constitution was written to protect man from the government. The Bill of Rights was not directed against private citizens, but against the government—as an explicit declaration that individual rights supersede any public or social power.” And as the teacher walked around the room to read students’ responses, what would s/he witness?


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