By Trudy A. Martinez
How does the 14th Amendment apply to today’s world? The answer to this question depends upon the actions taken by the citizens of the United States of America to preserve the privileges guaranteed through the Constitution and the Amendments thereof.
In analysis, the State of California is testing “The Constitution of the United States of America and the Amendments thereof” by making laws that condense through omission specific privileges. The State allows practices within the State boundaries which individually or collectively lessen or diminish citizen privileges cited in the Amendments of the U. S. Constitution through unfair business or ethical practices. Even though the 14th Amendment specifically states: “No State shall make or enforce any laws which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of Citizens . . . nor . . . deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law, nor deny . . . equal protection of the laws,” Californians have allowed the State to lessen or diminish our guaranteed rights through the passage of legislation or, more frequently, by allowing the State officials to turn their head to all the abuses surrounding them. Why? Just because legislation doesn’t affect us today, doesn’t mean it won’t affect us tomorrow. Have we become so self-interested that we do not see the forest for the trees? Has everyone begun to take our rights for granted thereby allowing only factions of our society to make our decisions for us?
People say: “You can’t fight City Hall!” That statement may be true if you go to City Hall to do the fighting. The City Hall comes under the County, the County under the State. When the State is the offender than we must go to a higher source, the Federal Government. Specifically Congress and the Supreme Court have the authority to resolve issues that abridge our privileges as citizens . The State is not going to slap their own hand that is left up to Uncle Sam. Just like a child who disobeys, punishment comes from his or her parent, the State needs their punishment to come from our higher government.
Help doesn’t come automatically; citizens need to take the necessary steps to make it happen. New State legislation doesn’t correct it, it only confuses and enhances the deceiving. Our duties as citizens are to identify the discrepancies and then together file suits through the court systems when our privileges become too few, For example:
1. Legislation abridging our right to bear our choice of arms (Amendment 2).
II. Insurance companies have been allowed the “taking” of property (Amendment 5) through the use of unrealistic evaluation of the replacement value or property (i.e., vehicles or property damage).
III. Nursing Homes, Hospitals, and especially mental hospitals are sometimes guilty of depriving “life” and “Liberty . . . without due process of law” by using the “Sword of Damacles” over the heads of patients omitted voluntarily through the stripping of the patient right of leaving voluntarily. In other words if a doctor doesn’t give his approval for release, the patient must pay “cash” for his own release because the insurance companies won’t pay. A poor person is therefore held in an insane prison against his will.
IV. The Nature Conservancy (TNC) and other “Hip Pocket Agencies” and environmentalist continue to put the price of human “life” below that of purported endangered species while at the same time abridging the privileges of the people through “taking” (Amendment 5) of property or monies as compensation for development. Where does it say in the Constitution or in the Amendments thereof that the people must do the compensating?
Previous legislation proposals wanted a tree to become an endangered species. But was the tree the real issue? Or was the real issue you and me? Taking of our property and abridging our privileges are blackmail, extortion, and plain highway robbery.
The same is true of the illegal immigration issues. The point is the illegals are not citizens! As such, they have no rights, nor should they. When they protested, they identified themselves and should have been deported immediately, escorted across the border by the U. S. Military forces.
I say, “Yes to America.” And I say, “No to the deception that is invading our shores.” The 14th Amendment says in Section 5: “The Congress shall have the power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article.” In other words if we want action, Congress has to do it for us. Congress has shown through history that they have made a habit of waiting fifty to one hundred years before acting. Do we want to wait until we are dead (the future of America lost) before our rights as citizens are protected? When Congress has sat on it hands in the past, the people had to take steps to force Congress to act. Has life in the United States become a game of “Simon Says” or “Mother May I?”
The Supreme Court has been given the authority through court actions to force Congress to act on our behalf. In the matters at hand the Supreme Court may prove to be our protector.