Is The United States of America still The United States of America?
by, 12-28-11 at 01:46 PM (1011 Views)
There is much debate over how much the US has changed since it's inception and how much has it has transformed from its founding principles. Thomas Paine's famous - definition, "not the act of a government, but of a people constituting a government."
The Constitution is the frame work and supreme legal document for the Government of the United States of America, defining the three branches and clearly delineating the powers of the branches. Constitution writing was not a practice invented by the delegates to the Convention in Philadelphia. There were precedents for what they did. There was the Magna Carta and the Mayflower Compact and, in their own century, the example of Rousseau. It grants certain power to the federal government and grants others to the states; and it guarantees the basic rights of the people.
The Constitution is short; it cannot and does not attempt to cover every eventuality. Even when it seems it is clear, there can be conflicting rights, conflicting spheres of power. When disputes arise, it comes time for people, and most importantly judges of the Judicial Branch, to interpret the Constitution. The U.S. Constitution, however, has been termed a Living Constitution, in part because it grows and adapts to internal and external pressures, changing from one era and generation to the next.
Since the 27 Amendments, added agencies and evolution of policies the government has certainly been altered. I believe the Federal Government has grown beyond its original intention into a self serving entity. The point of elected officials was to serve the public and represent the interests of the people and their system of checks and balances. I don't believe the sheer size and scope of our government serves that purpose anymore. One of the duties of government is to ensure "due process" and "equal protection" under the law. Is that the case in today's society of Corporate control and influence? Has the Constitution and The United States been subverted from it's original purpose?
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