Lincoln said the Declaration of Independence is the apple of gold, while the Constitution is the mere frame of silver.
Lincoln meant that the Declaration lays forth the natural law of just government, and the Constitution is the framework to protect and carry out the Declaration’s principles.
In many respects the Declaration’s principles have been abandoned. Individualism, liberty and personal responsibility have been replaced with the religion of government, statism and paternalism. We now operate in a world where government grants us rights instead of their being inherent in our humanity.
This has lead to constitutional interpretation that, for the most part, broadly construes grants of government authority and strictly construes citizen rights; exactly the opposite of the Declaration’s and the Constitution’s core meanings.
We attorneys, especially the criminal defense bar, see the deleterious effects of this phony-Constitutional practice daily. The protections of the 1st, 2nd, 4th, 5th and 6th amendments have been consistently undermined. Restraint on Government, especially Washington, is virtually non-existent.
We now have a Federal government with plans for 30,000 drones in U.S. airspace by 2020, that has made it a felony to have a “disruptive” protest near a Secret Service detail, and that even professes the authority to indefinitely imprison U.S. citizens, found on U.S. soil, without trial or charge; Constitution be damned. We’ve suffered a death by a thousand razor cuts, and live in a place foreign to our fathers. Not to mention that when every tax is added up we work approximately Monday-Wednesday for the government.
In short, we’ve all taken the oath, and are duty-bound to to protect this country according to our conscience. I for one, intend to back anyone who stands up for the Declaration and Constitution, whether progressive or tea party; political-correctness be damned.