From the Heartland

This is my soap box, on these pages I publish my opinions on firearms and any other subject I feel like writing about.

Monday, February 22, 2010

... Provide for the General Welfare ...

There is much confusion about what is or is not in the Constitution and how it applies to those in service to We the People. Frankly I attribute this to the public education of this countries youth since at least the 1950's.

Many have queried this writer on the context of the following quote;


"Congress has not unlimited powers to provide for the general welfare but only those specifically enumerated."
-- Thomas Jefferson

Unfortunately too many people believe that "promote the general welfare" gives Congress unlimited power to enact any legislation they want too. There were even in Jefferson's day those that felt that way. The reason he issued the above quoted text was to remind them it was not so.

To understand what he meant, and why, one only has to read the Constitution and actually be able to comprehend what it says. I know that may be hard for some that were not home-schooled, but try. It should be a fairly simple process for the common person since it was not written by lawyers. Heck even I can understand it!

In the Preamble

We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

Article I
Section 1. All legislative powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives.


How much more simple can that be?

Our elected representatives have only those powers granted them by We the People in the Constitution.

If a power is not specifically enumerated then they are violating their oath of office if, as they have been doing, assume any power without the approval of We the People. That approval can only be granted by We the People as a change to the Constitution its self.

Understand this;

The only powers that Congress has are specified in Sections eight and nine of the Constitution and in some of the amendments that have been enacted.

The ".. promote the general welfare .." phrase is embodied in the PREAMBLE to the Constitution. Provide for the general welfare is one of the reasons for the document, not a power granted by it.


There is no power given to "promote the general welfare".

Instead of relying on public educated acquaintances to tell you what they heard it means, get a copy of the Constitution and read it for yourself. If you have a problem understanding it find a home-schooled student to explain it to you.

If We the People had been vigilant and held those we elected to serve us accountable for the last 100 years we would not be in the situation we are today. If we really want to see who is to blame for the fix our country is in all we have to do is look in the mirror and see our apathetic reflection staring back at us.

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