[ExI] The Total State

David C. Harris dharris234 at mindspring.com
Sat Jun 21 06:53:42 UTC 2008

spike wrote:
>  ...
> The bill of rights forbids the government from seizing one's property
> without due process of law, but it doesn't actually say in there anywhere
> that the government may not seize one's children, utterly without evidence
> of a crime.  No direct and explicit violation of the bill of rights,
> therefore the ACLU would have nothing to say in this case.
> This was a hell of a shocking civics lesson.  The fact that this was
> overlooked or unstated in the bill of rights is appalling to me.  The
> constitution of course long predated the whole notion of a child
> "protective" service, and so the idea likely never occurred to the founding
> fathers to add such a clause to forbid take away our children without
> meticulous rigor and due process of law.  
> If this case is allowed to stand (the Texas CPS officers do not face justice
> for their crimes) it looks to me as if the constitution allows the state
> governments to become a tyrannical dictatorships, in complete control of the
> population, perfectly legally.  It allows these governments to control the
> population by legally abducting their children.  
> All this time we have been worried about abuse of the war powers act, when
> the *real* time bomb in the constitution was elsewhere and even more
> insidious.
> spike
Hi Spike,

The idea that the government can do anything not forbidden is not 
America law.  There is the explicit declaration in  Bill of Rights 
Article 10: "/The powers not delegated to the United States by the 
Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the 
states respectively, or to the people."  /

Your thoughts on child removal touches on the idea of an inherent right 
of privacy, the principal behind Roe versus Roe.  The Supreme court 
asserted in Roe that there are rights (personal autonomy/privacy in that 
case) that are so obvious that the Founders didn't think it necessary to 
enumerate them.  Maybe a right to access to air or a right not to be 
fitted with a shock device so that minor crimes can be punished 
immediately at the moment of infraction.  There seems to be a 
recognition in the law that the love of children is too intense to 
abridge in any but the most extreme situations.  So the mass removal of 
the FLDS children was reversed, with the Texas court requiring more 
specific evidence of danger to the specific children.

Some of the hardest disputes are over issues where it's not clear what 
is obviously covered by law and what is strictly off limits.  For 
instance, before the past century the right to control medical care and 
use drugs or not were considered state or individual rights. 

  - David

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