Obama drops ‘Creator’ from Declaration quote September 22, 2010Posted by stevekerp in Uncategorized.
At a recent meeting of the Hispanic caucus of the U.S. Congress, “President” Obama mis-quoted a portion of the Declaration of Independence. Obama said, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, endowed with certain inalienable rights: life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”
Mr. Obama’s version contains several errors. Compare his statement with the actual quotation:
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”
First, while acknowledging that we are created, he removed the reference to the “Creator.” He leaves his hearers free to wonder from whence this endowment of rights may have come. In view of the recently articulated absurdity by Steven J. Hawking, some may have concluded that we created ourselves. This, I would suggest, is hardly “self-evident” to even the most atheistic; indeed, it takes many years of higher education to come to this “truth” and many more years to explain it with a straight face.
That our rights come from God is the theological underpinning of all that follows. That rights are an endowment from government is a competing premise, and there’s little doubt where Mr. Obama comes down on that question.
Second, he said “inalienable” which is quite different from “unalienable.” The first means that they cannot be alienated from the one to whom they are endowed; the second means they cannot be converted into privileges and then licensed back to the one who has them. “un a LIEN able” – which is exactly what the federal corporation does. Our God-given right to travel is converted into a privilege and then licensed back to us. Our God-given right to work is converted into a privilege and then the fruits are subject to an excise (that is, privilege) tax. We can “own” a home but can only rent the land on which it rests. And if we want to make changes, we need a license for that, too. If you’re married, take another look at your “marriage license.” Why should any free man or woman need a LICENSE to get married?
He is okay with inalienable rights – we “enjoy” those rights in an academic sense, but when we choose to exercise them, then the actual activity associated with exercise of rights becomes what the regime insists is really the exercise of a government-granted privilege, and thence subject to regulation and privilege taxes. This is why the government has so many lawyers on its payroll.
Finally, it appears by his rendering that Mr. Obama believes that the extent of these rights is “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” By leaving out “among these” he suggests that the list is exhaustive. The Framers, of course, knew better. What was self-evident to them is a bit arcane to today’s body politic.
Obama, the “Constitutional scholar” certainly knows this stuff, and probably knows it better than we do.
October 20th: Obama’s Encore