Chad's Constitution Blog

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Dear President Obama, About that Commander in Chief Thing…

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th-1I’m happy to see that you’ve finally come to the decision that we need to actively confront the evil of Islamic terrorism. However, the approach you have decided to take is very dangerous. You see, it’s about that Commander in Chief thing. For the second time during your presidency, you’ve chosen to use the American military without getting Congressional approval. That’s a big problem.

I know that you’ve read our Constitution before because you taught Constitutional Law at the University of Chicago. So you should already know that the Constitution doesn’t say that you are the Commander in Chief of our military. In Article 2, Section 2 it clearly states that:

The President shall be Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States, and of the Militia of the several states, when called into the actual Service of the United States… (emphasis added)

The last part of that sentence is extremely important. It means that you don’t get to decide when to use our military. Only Congress gets to make that decision. Your role is simply to direct our armed forces after they have been called into service. Until then, you do not have the legitimate authority to order our military to confront an enemy that Congress hasn’t authorized.

Read more at TheBlaze…

The Federal Government Continues to Try to Do the Impossible

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Our Constitution creates a federal government that can be very effective for governing this country if we want it to be.

Before it can work properly though, we need to understand what it does well and what it doesn’t do well. After all, a fork is a great eating utensil but you need to understand what it was designed to do. If you keep trying to use your fork to eat soup you’re never going to get much out of it.

Our federal government is no different. We need to understand what it was designed to do or we’re never going to get much out of it.

As I explained last weekend on TheBlaze Radio’s Chris Salcedo Show, there is a good reason why the federal government and the state governments were intended to play very different roles in this country:

Read more at TheBlaze…

Senate Democrats Nobly Promise to Protect You…by Granting Themselves More Power

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A lot of understanding how the Constitution works and how to protect our liberty from the government comes down to common sense and a basic knowledge of human nature. In most situations in life, we naturally apply what we know about human nature to protect ourselves from someone taking advantage of us or harming us in some way.

Think about it. When you walk into a car dealership, do you take everything the salesman says at face value and blindly accept that he only wants to do what’s best for you? Of course not. You are skeptical of everything he says because you know that he is primarily working for his own best interests, not yours. That’s just human nature. Regardless of how nice the salesman might be, the ultimate goal is to sell you a car for the highest price possible.

But for some reason, a lot of us completely abandon this basic knowledge of human nature when it comes to government and our politicians. Whenever there is a politician or a party that we like, we desperately cling to this “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington”-style belief that our representatives sincerely want to do what’s best for us.

For example, last week the Senate narrowly defeated a proposal to change the First Amendment in a way that would give Congress the power to regulate political speech. As I explained this weekend on TheBlaze Radio’s Chris Salcedo Show, this move has absolutely nothing to do with what’s best for the American people:

Read more at TheBlaze….

Congress’s Stunning Abuse of the Taxing Power

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The amount of power that Congress has been able to exercise through it’s ability to tax is stunning.

Think about it. It has used the power to tax to force you to contribute to your own retirement through Social Security and it uses federal tax dollars to dictate what our schools will teach. Now, the taxing power is even being used to force you to buy health insurance.

All of this is possible because the conventional wisdom in this country is that Congress has a very broad taxing power.

But as I explained this weekend on TheBlaze Radio’s Chris Salcedo Show, Congress’s power to tax is actually very limited:

What Obama Doesn’t Know Can Hurt Us: His Misinterpretation of the Constitution is a Threat to Us All

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A couple of weeks ago, I was having a conversation with Chris Salcedo (host of The Chris Salcedo Show on TheBlaze radio) and he reminded me of this comment that President Barack Obama made back in 2001:

Obviously that clip isn’t new and you’ve probably heard it several times before. But when Obama was running for president back in 2007, I don’t think most Americans knew quite what to make of these comments.

Now that we can compare them to what Obama has done during his time in office, we can see that he was giving us a very clear indication of his approach to government. It’s an approach that should be terrifying to everyone who values their freedom.

As I explained during a very spirited segment on The Chris Salcedo Show, Obama’s perspective on government is the complete opposite of our Founders:

Read more at TheBlaze…

What Ferguson Teaches Us About the Second Amendment

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By now I’m sure you are well aware of what has happened in Ferguson, Missouri over the last week.

Countless articles have been written examining the situation from just about every angle you could imagine. But we shouldn’t forget that there’s a Constitutional lesson to be learned here as well.

Here is the Constitution Revolution segment that I did for The Chris Salcedo Show last weekend:

For even more information about what Ferguson can teach us about the Second Amendment, check out the article that I wrote about this topic for TheBlaze.com.

Debunking Another First Amendment Myth

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th-2It’s time to take look at another “fact” about the First Amendment that everybody knows, but that just isn’t true.

Almost everyone in this country knows that our right to free speech is limited by the fact that you can’t yell “fire” in a crowded theater. You’ve probably heard that claim hundreds of times.

Because so many people accept that idea, politicians love to use it as an excuse to violate our other rights as well. Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) loves this example so much that he uses it to justify violating both the First Amendment and the Second Amendment. In a 2012 Washington Post column, he wrote:

“No individual right is absolute, after all. While the First Amendment protects freedom of speech, no one has a right to falsely shout ‘Fire!’ in a crowded theater, nor to traffic in child pornography. Likewise, the Second Amendment’s right to bear arms also comes with limits.”

But is he right? Is your right to free speech limited by the fact that you can’t yell “fire” in a crowded theater?

Read more at TheBlaze…

Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s Genitals Make Her Superior to You

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Last week, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said that the male justices on the Supreme Court couldn’t truly understand the Hobby Lobby case because they aren’t women. That comment is insulting and condescending on its face. But if you apply a little common sense to it you can see just how bizarre this point of view actually is.

It is a basic principle of this country that we all have equal rights to life, liberty and property. The issues surrounding this mandate that employers cover all forms of contraception boil down to basic questions about our rights to liberty and property. What is it exactly that Ginsburg doesn’t think male justices can understand about the rights, liberty and property that we all share equally?

Ginsburg’s comment proves that she, like so many other Americans, has a fundamental misunderstanding about the nature of our rights. Our rights are a sacred part of our humanity and we should never allow them to be violated by government or anyone else. When your rights are violated you are being treated as something less than human.

But just as you should never allow your rights to be violated, you never have the right to violate the rights of another person. As I explained this weekend on TheBlaze Radio’s Chris Salcedo Show, that is the ultimate problem with this new-found “right” to employer-provided birth control:

Read more at TheBlaze… 

It’s Time to Disarm the Liberal Talking Point that the Second Amendment is Meant for Militia’s Only

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IMG_4061On Tuesday, I penned an article demonstrating that the Second Amendment protects the rights of individual citizens to own a firearm.

Now I will deal with another argument that is popular with gun control activists: The Second Amendment only protects the right to own a gun for militia-related uses.

In the recent District of Columbia v. Heller (2008) case, Justice Stephens spent a significant amount of time making that argument in his dissent. Justice Breyer wrote his own separate dissent in the Heller case and he summarized the claim this way:

[T]he Second Amendment protects militia-related, not self-defense-related, interests.

As we consider this argument, it doesn’t matter what gun control activists can twist the words of the amendment to mean. All that’s important is getting to the truth of what the Founders intended the Second Amendment to mean. What we need to do is figure out if it’s at all possible that people who believed what our Founders believed would ratify an amendment that only protected the right to use a firearm for militia-related purposes.

Read more at TheBlaze…

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