It’s Rite of Marriage, Not Right of Marriage

marriage wedding bride and groom

It’s the rite of marriage, not the right of marriage. Is there an eleventh Bill of Rights amendment recognizing marriage as a right? Of course not. Since time immemorial every state, every tribe, every locality, every pastor, priest, church, and denomination has been free to infringe marriage with whatever laws, regulations, and fees they decided upon. Those refused marriage in one church went to another, to another state, even to another country. Why! At the proper moment during the marriage ceremony any Bo or Daisy could stand, “To give just cause why the two should not be married.” The institution of marriage was everywhere the common formula: one man and one woman. The formula itself an infringement. Rights don’t have them.

Then Obergefell v. Hodges showed up. Most everyone said, “See? Marriage is a right.” Wrong. The decision used the equal protection clause of the fourteenth amendment to proclaim two couples of the same sex could marry. It was an anti-discrimination decision transformed into the declaration of a new right, the right of marriage. The mixed up decision violated two tenets of our Constitution: divided government and adherence to the amendment process to secure and maintain our rights. Through this mix-up healthcare became a right. Wrong. Medicaid benefits to illegal aliens became a right. Wrong. Through this same mix-up states and feds pass gun control laws infringing the right to bear arms without abiding to the amendment process. When we allow our government to violate, or over a long period of time to overthrow our rights, whether by neglect or malice, legitimate rights are abolished. Imposter rights are invented.

Our organic law as specified in Volume One of the US Code consists of four documents: the Declaration of Independence, the Articles of Confederation, the Northwest Ordinance, and the US Constitution. The Declaration of Independence rails against the powers of government when unjustly used against a nation’s citizens. The Declaration further defines and absolutely glorifies the rights of individuals in the face of a government’s vast array of powers. Governments and individuals are granted powers, “by the consent of the governed.” Rights: all individuals are born with. They are not granted, bestowed, or allowed. Therefore they cannot be infringed; not even by the amendment process. Governments recognize our rights or they don’t. They do not write, define, regulate, tax, limit, or infringe them. Rights simply are, whether governments recognize them or not.

All individuals across the globe have the same rights as Americans. Unfortunately, most people of the planet live under oppressive governments, too ignorant to recognize the rights of its citizens. By oppressive, ignorant governments we reluctantly include the unlikely countries of France, Britain, Australia, and others who have chosen, for instance, to disarm their citizens and restrict their religious liberties. An American has a right to self-defense in Mexico. A Mexican has a right to self-defense in the United States. The right to self-defense means the right to possess and bear, with sufficient ammunition, what is needed to defend oneself when government is not at hand to intercede. Rights are regulated by the individual, one reason why they are called individual rights. Rights trump laws.

Only individuals have rights. Americans do not have rights. Mexicans do not have rights. Blacks do not have rights. Whites do not have rights. BLM does not have rights. The LGBT do not have rights. Women do not have rights. Men do not either. Groups of people do not have rights different than those possessed by any other group on the face of the planet. That is because all individuals possess the same rights. If what is demanded by one group or another as a right is different from what any individual on the planet possesses, as an individual right, it’s not a right but simply a crass demand for favoritism by a group of people seeking advantage over other groups of people.

Now for the sticky part, the entirety of our organic law specifies what our individual rights are and where they come from. Though governments might abuse their citizens regarding individual rights, rights cannot be amended or defined out of existence by men. That is because all rights are from God, a gift, an evidence of His grace towards people who probably don’t deserve them. All of that is in our organic law, every bit of it. So when a government official takes his oath of office; whether he be atheist, Marxist, or Muslim; he is sworn to defend the rights of this nation’s individuals as if they were to him, God-given. He is sworn not to redefine, regulate, tax, amend, or adjudicate away any of our rights; because they are legitimate rights recognized; not laws instituted through the adoptive process of hearings, arguments, compromises, votes, and signatures.

All that can be known about what it is to be an American is stated clearly in the Declaration of Independence. From the Declaration we understand our reverence for Natural Law and Nature’s God. Within it can be seen the foundation of our God-given unalienable rights. Strangely enough neither the Constitution nor the Bill of Rights though invaluable to Americans is mentioned in the Declaration. They came later. The Constitution was established to form a government worthy of the ideals of the Declaration. The separation of powers and amendment process were devised to maintain and defend the rights and privileges of Americans. The Founders knew as long as we adhered to divided government and followed carefully the amendment process to make any changes we would remain Americans.

So, beyond the normal means of overthrowing a government through war from without, civil war from within, a coup, or insurrection; Americans face a unique threat. It’s the loss of rights and the invention of rights without use of the only constitutional means provided: the amendment process. It’s our rights that make us uniquely American. Divided government and the amendment process were given us to secure our rights. Without them we risk becoming like citizens of any other nation of the world.

The proper amendment process begins when 2/3rds of both houses of Congress or 2/3rds of the states’ legislatures pass a proposed amendment, is completed when 3/4ths of the states’ legislatures ratify the proposed amendment. When the long, laborious amendment process is not followed; observe how many elected representatives across the country have felt a thumb in the eye or kick to the groin: 2/3rds of both houses of Congress or 2/3rds of the states’ legislators, PLUS 3/4ths of the state’s legislatures for good measure. Consider further every legislator represents tens of thousands of individuals from his district or state. So the thumbs and kicks descend deep, into every nook and cranny of every household in every state of the union.

Every legislator who passes laws to infringe our rights or create rights without doing so through the amendment process involves himself in the overthrow of our constitutional government. Every US Supreme Court Justice who amends the Constitution by changing definitions of words or adding phrases that infringe our rights or invent rights is likewise involved in the overthrow. And a President who unilaterally amends our rights, destroys rights, or makes rights up from thin air; also is equally involved in the overthrow of our constitutionally established republic.

 

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The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author and are not not necessarily either shared or endorsed by iPatriot.com.

Don Swank

Don is a semi-retired window washer, an active runner, and occasional bird watcher. Don earned his B.A. Degree in Business and Economics at Seattle Pacific University in 1971, and his M.Div. Degree at Asbury Theological Seminary in 1974. He lives near Toledo with his wife of 40 years. Visit and Like on Facebook when you can, from the Website link below:

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