Why is it that so many Americans have turned their back on the Constitution of the United States?
The clear and simple meaning of the Constitution has been allowed to be perverted or simply ignored, and there is no national conversation about it. The majority of stories in the media totally ignore the existence of the Constitution and some in Congress who, when asked about the constitutionality of a bill, scoff at the idea. Very few people, if any, call either out on their behavior.
The Constitution of the United States is the supreme law of the land, yet it has been relegated to the back bench by too many Americans. This needs to change if we are to maintain our status as a free nation.
Congress is the only entity in our federal government that is allowed to make laws. That is confirmed by the first sentence of the Constitution. It is very clear what powers were delegated to Congress. Article 1 Section 8 details these enumerated powers. These were powers the states originally possessed but were delegated to our newly created federal because it was determined a central authority could better do the job. These powers were described by James Madison, the "father" of the Constitution, in Federalist 45:
"The powers delegated by the proposed Constitution to the federal government, are few and defined. Those which are to remain in the State governments are numerous and indefinite. The former will be exercised principally on external objects, as war, peace, negotiation, and foreign commerce; with which last the power of taxation will, for the most part, be connected. The powers reserved to the several States will extend to all the objects which, in the ordinary course of affairs, concern the lives, liberties, and properties of the people, and the internal order, improvement, and prosperity of the State."
This is the list of enumerated powers delegated by Article 1 Section 8:
“The Congress shall have Power to lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;
To borrow Money on the credit of the United States;
To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian Tribes;
To establish a uniform Rule of Naturalization, and uniform Laws on the subject of Bankruptcies throughout the United States;
To coin Money, regulate the Value thereof, and of foreign Coin, and fix the Standard of Weights and Measures;
To provide for the Punishment of counterfeiting the Securities and current Coin of the United States;
To establish Post Offices and post Roads;
To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries;
To constitute Tribunals inferior to the supreme Court;
To define and punish Piracies and Felonies committed on the high Seas, and Offences against the Law of Nations;
To declare War, grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules concerning Captures on Land and Water;
To raise and support Armies, but no Appropriation of Money to that Use shall be for a longer Term than two Years;
To provide and maintain a Navy;
To make Rules for the Government and Regulation of the land and naval Forces;
To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions;
To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining, the Militia, and for governing such Part of them as may be employed in the Service of the United States, reserving to the States respectively, the
Appointment of the Officers, and the Authority of training the Militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress;
To exercise exclusive Legislation in all Cases whatsoever, over such District (not exceeding ten Miles square) as may, by Cession of particular States, and the Acceptance of Congress, become the Seat of the Government of the United States, and to exercise like Authority over all Places purchased by the Consent of the Legislature of the State in which the Same shall be, for the Erection of Forts, Magazines, Arsenals, dockYards, and other needful Buildings;—And
To make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing Powers, and all other Powers vested by this Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any Department or Officer thereof”
These are the only laws which Congress is allowed to administer.
What is missing from above? Education. Drug regulations. Environmental laws. Business regulations. Social Security. Automobile regulations. Food regulations. Healthcare.
Add to these enterprises the agencies that have been created illegally in our federal government. Who needs Congress when you have the EPA? Or BLM? Or the FDA? The FCC? Or ATF? OSHA? FDIC? The USDA? Homeland Security? The Department of Labor? The Department of Education? The Department of Energy?
Those are just a few of the hundreds of agencies and departments that rule our lives and are not authorized by the Constitution. None of these items and many more tasks the government performs is not authorized by the Consitution and are thus, by definition, unconstitutional.
Add to this argument the simple statement of the 10th Amendment:
"The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people."
Why is it that we have no stories which address this problem? Nary a peep is heard when we send troops to a foreign country without a declaration of war or Congress makes a "law" concerning healthcare. Both happen too frequently, yet the dialogue we see does not ever question the legality of these actions.
Government officials break the law almost every day, yet no one is called out for their conduct. Our representatives in government take an oath to uphold and defend the Constitution, but no one is held to that oath. Why aren't we the people talking about this?
It is my goal to educate people on the relevance and meaning of the Constitution of the United States of America. It is not a hard document to understand and contains the solutions to many problems we face today as a nation. Education is the cornerstone of liberty and must occur for us to once again put our country on the trajectory that has made us the most prosperous and free nation the world has ever seen. Otherwise, we will be relegated to the scrap heap of history and join other failed nations in the gutter of historical mediocrity. We owe it to the billions of people yet to be born to pass on the gift of liberty that was bequeathed to us. Support the Constitution. Support America. Support Liberty.
Join me at Constitutional Cappuccino to get plugged into a website that is all about the education Americans need to move our country back to its proper trajectory. My new book "Patriot Ammo: The Words Behind Our Flag" is also available and teaches of our founding documents and principles.