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June 7, 2012
The following is an essay I wrote in defense of The Constitution.
“The race of man became fully human not through a process of biological evolution, but through one of moral revolution.”–RG
In all of the ages past, man had been constrained by flawed governments. These governments in all their diverse forms, regarded man not as a self-determinant being, but as animal to be trained and herded and forced to labor for the maintenance of his superiors.
Although governments changed form from tribalism to monarchy, and all things in-between, the hierarchy of authority did not vary. The governed were invariably subject to the power of the government, and man’s thoughts, actions, and profit were formed, dictated, and confiscated as a matter of law.
Life is the first morality and liberty the second. Long had man languished in an immoral system where his life was subject to the liberty of his rulers, or of the libertine force of whatever marauder or enemy used physical force to impose their will upon him.
A system of moral laws would be required to stand at the intersection of life and liberty, where one’s life would be protected above all things against the liberties of the state or of other individuals. The moral law would also guide liberty in the context of life as the first morality. The weight of this moral law would not be upon the body of the government, but upon the shoulders of free men.
The Declaration of Independence proclaimed the first moralities of life and liberty, and offered up the Divine imperative to establish a system of laws that respected them as the inception of government. Only in such a system, where man would be his own highest authority, and the law would be subject to the first moralities, with the liberties of man proscribed by the law, could man reach his fullest human potential. Life, liberty, and a moral system of laws would turn the authority of the government over to the governed in a risky and revolutionary experiment in the laboratory of freedom.
The moment man became fully human was when, according to all demographic measures, the United States of America was established and its Constitution became the law of the land. This pioneering annotation of government’s proper relationship with the governed turned the model of man as subject and government as ruler upon its head.
Man’s own consciousness became the boundary of his limitation. His identity as a free and thinking being, like unto God in his comprehension of good and evil, unleashed an explosion of innovation, industry, and longevity like none the world had ever seen. The man of liberty, having incentive to live and create because he now owned his life along with the works of his hands–his property–brought about the industrial revolution. And revolutions followed across the world in which countries would reject the millennial reigns of monarchs and seek to reproduce, by some measure, the moral phenomenon they observed upon the American continent.
Liberty defines man as man. The full ownership of his life and responsible exercise of his liberties are the only conditions under which man can be fully human; being exposed to the elements and challenges of the world without the impositions of outside government, and without its shelters.
His navigation within a moral system of laws tests his worthiness to be his own government. Man lives by his identity as a thinking, industrious, moral being. Or he dies as a stupefied, lazy ward of the state to which he has traded his identity for a little shelter, and has positioned himself to be a subject of the builder of the hovel into which he has crawled.
It is critical for Americans to understand that should our moral system of government of, for, and by the governed be replaced incrementally and intentionally by a misshapen state of and for itself, that it is not just our liberties that are endangered, but our lives as well.
American Constitutional principles and the first moralities of life and liberty are a tenuous lifeline to human identity and potential. The government of the people must be by the people. The first moralities must stand above all other considerations, because liberty without life is anarchy , life without liberty is a cage, and government without the first moralities is a tyranny.
By Marjorie Haun 6/7/12