norml17 - Page 12
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steps on your right to flee speech, don't look to the federal constitution for
Washington's framers came at things from the opposite direction. The
Declaration of Rights is the first section of the constitution, not a list of
amendments added later° Article I, §1 states unequivocally that "[a]ll
political power is inherent in the people, and governments...are established
to protect and maintain individual fights."
The fist of enumerated rights contrasts starkly with the federal Bill of
Pdghts, in that they confer fights without reference to any particular entity.
The people have fights, period. Some examples:
* The right of petition, o. shall never be abridged. 38
* Every person may freely speak, write and publish on all subjects.. °39
o No person shall be disturbed in his private affidrs, or his home invaded,
without authority of Iaw°_
Absolute freedom of conscience in all matters of religious sentiment, belief
and worship, shall be guaranteed to every incfividual, o 4x
® The right of the mdividuaI citizen to bear arms in defense of t_mself, or the
state, shall not be impaired°. 42
None of the above enumerations of rights mention the state or the
legislature° They concentrate o_ the right of the individual to be free from
infringement from anyone, individual, corporate or governments
Thus, a person looking for a fight to medicine arbitrarily withheld starts
with a broad choice between looking to a constitution which states only that
"Congress shall pass no laws" to infringe on some personal liberties, and a
constitution which allows no person or entity to infringe on a longer list of
fights. The choice seems clear.
It seems even more clear when you consider that in Washington, the
fourth branch of government is the people, not the bureaucracy. Consider
38 Wash. ConsL arL 1, § 4.
4_ ill § t1°
42/_L § 24o
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