A glimmer of hope

The post below was written in 2016. I had just read a book that, amazingly, still rests on my shelf, called Everything You Know About the Constitution is Wrong, by a man calling himself Edward James Snowden. I normally do not recommend what others should read or watch or think. It is up to you.

Last night comments were appearing on the nature of our Constitution, and I remembered this book. It had impacted me. There are many threads within the book that Snowden writes well about, but the one that caught my eye most when I read it was the 14th Amendment, passed in 1868. It is long and wordy, and I will reprint here only the pertinent parts of the first clause:

All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside. No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

Honestly, that sounds like overstating the obvious along with virtue signalling. The country had just emerged from a bloody Civil War, blacks were emancipated, so the ground was ripe to make major substantial changes in our laws. Prior to this amendment, non-black people were citizens of the various states, and none (except slaves) could be deprived of life, liberty or property without due process of law. Blacks were no longer slaves. Why restate? It appears as though the purpose was to make everyone a subject of the Federal Government rather than any state.

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