Tag Archives: free exercise of religion

People’s Rights Amendment

Today, the Court has enthroned corporations, permitting them not only all kinds of special economic rights but now, amazingly, moving to grant them the same political rights as the people.

Jamie RaskinMaryland State Senator
Bill of Rights

United States Bill of Rights

Constitutional law expert,

Washington College of Law
American University

 

The movement to reserve the rights ensured by the US Constitution to citizens and stop them from being awarded to corporations is rapidly gaining steam. The legal standing of corporations as people began in 1886, in the famous case Santa Clara County v. Southern Pacific Railroad Company in which the court based its arguments on the Constitution in denying Santa Clara County the right to right to tax property unfairly assessed for taxes. This decision was the beginning of a long string of decisions that accorded corporations as legal entities the same rights as persons. The problem is that corporations have no personal conscience. They are legal entities with no sensibilities. Their boards, executives, and managers can act on under shelter of the corporation with legal impunity. A corporation that controls a town and all the jobs in it, can close its factory with no personal sense of obligation or legal responsibility to the people it employs. It can destroy a town.

This was not always the case. When the corporate charter was established legally it had term limits. The corporation had to apply to the state in a given number of years in order to continue conducting business as a corporation. The State, acting on behalf of the people, could refuse to renew the charter of a company that was not acting in the best interests of a community and withdraw the special rights of corporations to protect their investors from personal responsibility. The investors could continue to operate as a business but they would be liable for their actions.

Today corporation can claim the people’s inalienable rights of freedom of speech, freedom of the press, free exercise of religion, freedom of association, and all such other rights of the people. But there is no there there. Corporations a shifty giants with enormous power for which no one can be held accountable. They have more money and power than local governments.

The People’s Rights Amendment seeks to correct this. It reads as follows:

Section 1. We the people who ordain and establish this Constitution intend the rights protected by this Constitution to be the rights of natural persons.

Section 2. The words people, person, or citizen as used in this Constitution do not include corporations, limited liability companies or other corporate entities established by the laws of any State, the United States, or any foreign state, and such corporate entities are subject to such regulation as the people, through their elected State and Federal representatives, deem reasonable and are otherwise consistent with the powers of Congress and the States under this Constitution.

Section 3. Nothing contained herein shall be construed to limit the people’s rights of freedom of speech, freedom of the press, free exercise of religion, freedom of association and all such other rights of the people, which rights are inalienable.

To sign a petition supporting the People’s Rights Amendment to the US Constitution:

http://www.peoplesrightsamendment.org/

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