Search This Blog

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

The founding fathers on voting rights

The Founding fathers have been hammered by liberals for years that they were racists and discriminated against others in a variety of issues. Voting rights is one of them. However, voting is not a right. If it was, ten year olds could vote. People should qualify to vote. Qualification was apart of the hostility against democracy; what liberals enjoy. Contrary to what lib judges that claim the "prevailing opinion of the framers" was that blacks were "so far inferior, that they had no rights which the white man was bound to respect …and that the Negro might justly and lawfully be reduced to slavery for his benefit." (Former Justice Thurgood Marshall, the first black appointed to the Supreme Court.)

Here are some of the conclusions reached in this book:
On slavery: Every leading Founder acknowledged that slavery was wrong. Slavery was legal and practiced in every state in 1776; by the end of the founding era, more than a hundred thousand slaves had been freed by the outlawing of slavery in seven of the original thirteen states or by individual acts of manumission, especially in the South. Most important, the ground for the eventual total abolition of slavery was laid in establishment of the equality principle at the center of the American polity by Jefferson, Madison, Franklin, Hamilton, Adams, Washington, and other leading Founders.

On the poor: Far from being indifferent to the poor, the Founders regarded the protection of private property rights as a necessary means for the poor to escape the kind of subjugation by the wealthy that they had experienced in Old Europe. And far from throwing the needy into the streets, the Founders maintained government-funded "safety-net" programs for them. Their property rights and welfare policies, which are often scorned today for their supposed indifference to the poor, were arguably more just and compassionate than ours.
On women: Women were understood by everyone to be included in the "all men" (all human beings) who are created equal. In New Jersey, women voted in elections routinely during the 1790s and early 1800s, for the first time anywhere in world history. This fact, as we will see, is clearly connected to the Founders' equality principle. So also was the idea, which grew during and after the founding era, that women and men have equal importance, but different roles, in the family and society. The best protection of women's rights, in the minds of both the men and the women of the founding era, was the core private association of a free and civilized society: lifelong marriage and the family. The alternatives—permitting no-fault divorce, pushing women into the job market, and legitimizing the treatment of women (and men) as sex objects—were thought to dehumanize and exploit, not liberate.

On the supposedly undemocratic electorate: Far from excluding the poor, the electorate in the founding era was the most democratic of any large nation in history. It included about 85 to 90 percent of free males. Those Founders who defended a property requirement for voting did so, not in opposition to, but on the basis of, the equality principle of the Declaration of Independence. They feared—as we will see, not without reason—that the propertyless poor might become the tools of influential and wealthy demagogues, distorting election results and endangering the survival of liberty. They changed their minds on this point as it became increasingly clear that the poor were not opponents but friends of the rights of mankind, including the right to acquire and possess property.
On naturalization and citizenship: The Founders' policy generously welcomed as equal citizens people from many nations and religions. However, there was a concern that immigrants might come in numbers too large, or from countries too despotic, to assimilate to the American way of life. There was also a concern that newcomers would not possess, or be in a position to acquire soon, the principles and habits necessary for democratic citizenship. Naturalization in early America was therefore limited primarily to those who had been formed by Western civilization. Still, the American way of life was informed by the universal principles of the Declaration. So although the Founders expected most immigrants to come from Europe, their principles made it possible for people of every race and continent to become, in Lincoln's phrase, "blood of the blood, and flesh of the flesh" of the Founding Fathers who came before them.

Friday, March 18, 2016

The founding fathers on the supreme court

Alexander Hamilton and James Wilson, and the rest of the founding fathers, believed the congress and the executive can declare the courts ruling as null and void and ignore their decisions. Article 3, Section 1, "The judicial power of the United States shall be vested in one supreme court, and in such inferior courts as the congress may from time to time ordain and establish." Along with halting all the proceedings of the court, as Wilson says below, the Senate can ignore the president without even responding to his nomination. That includes ambassadors and other ministers.

In federalist 69, Hamilton said presidential power is inferior "to that of the governor of New York." The governor could cast a vote to appoint a judge. And in all caps, Hamilton wrote, "In the national government, if the Senate should be divided, no appointment could be made." The founding fathers realized the ability of the states, via the Senate, to check a nomination was one of the constitution's attractions. They did not want a president with kingly powers of appointment. And New York ratified the constitution.

Wilson below, showing congress can control the supreme court

The Convention found the task too difficult for them, and they left the business as it stands, in the fullest confidence that no danger could possibly ensue, since the proceedings of the Supreme Court are to be regulated by the Congress, which is a faithful representation of the people; and the oppression of government is effectually barred, by declaring that in all criminal cases the trial by jury shall be preserved. [bold face mine]
-- Speech of James Wilson. Pennsylvania, October 6, 1787.

This means the congress can halt the proceedings of the supreme court. I'm not sure if the congress can eliminate the supreme court because it's charter is in the constitution. However, pertaining to nominees, the constitution says the Senate can just ignore the nominee anyway. No need to make a statement on it.