For many of the founding fathers the Constitution was definitely not enough to restrain the power of government. They knew and understood what an all powerful government could do to individuals. They trembled at the thought of such an environment. One can see the destructive nature of government of which the founders were terrified when the Holocaust of the 20th century and the nefarious government activity taking place around the world today are closely examined.
As noted in the preamble above the reason for the Bill of Rights was to create and specifically express additional restrictive clauses elaborating those already mentioned in the Constitution to forbid government officials from taking the law into their own hands. In this way the founders felt that the establishment of a bill of rights would extend public confidence in government and guarantee beneficial ends to the individual.
The natural tendency is for government officials to acquire more and more power and it is sold to the populace as necessary for additional security. Hence the Patriot Act, Military Commissions Act as well as most other enacted legislation in order to help individuals deal with every day life. The end result is not really help but subjugation. American government officials today demand that individual rights must be sacrificed for the benefit of society and individual security just like ranchers brand cattle and pen them up for their own protection.
James Madison warned, "If congress can employ money indefinitely to the general welfare, and are the sole and supreme judges of the general welfare, they may take the care of religion into their own hands; they may appoint teachers in every state, county and parish and pay them out of their public treasury; they may take into their own hands the education of children, establishing in like manner schools throughout the union; they may assume the provision of the poor; they may undertake the regulation of all roads other than post-roads; in short, every thing, from the highest object of state legislation down to the most minute object of police, would be thrown under the power of congress.... Were the power of congress to be established in the latitude contended for, it would subvert the very foundations, and transmute the very nature of the limited government established by the people of America."
The founders saw the destructive nature in government power and gave today's generation the ability to keep that power penned in. Today's generation must also see the destructive nature of government if it wants to remain free.
The people for the USA Yuma group meets tomorrow, January 11 at 7 PM at the Yuma Community Food Bank conference room for another discussion on individual liberty.
The Freedom Library begins its spring semester study of the United States Constitution January 23. All those interested in earning an opportunity to receive one of four available $1,000 scholarships may go to www.freedomlibrary.org to register. Those interested in providing funds to The Freedom Library to help those interested in learning about individual liberty may make a tax deductible contribution at the same website.