Reading MissLittleChatterbox today, I came across this post about the Duke case.
A vital statement about society was echoed by these players, and then by Rush Limbaugh this week, about the trend to accept the authorities word as always being correct. This is a view that people far too often put into practice, and is one of the better aspects of having strong discourse in the public sphere. This case shows the need and the continued existence of diverging ideas, agitation, free speech, and continued demands by the public for the furtherance of transparency of government.
While I am happy that these young men have deservedly had their names cleared, a great burden falls on society to consider what of those who do not have the means to combat and defend against incidents of prosecution, which resembles practices more commonly thought of with the Third Reich and Stalinist Russian than the United States. It must never be forgotten that terms such as a presumption of innocence mean something. That government exists by the consent of the governed. That the little people, collectively, mean in the end a great deal more than the power of the state. Yes, I am a strong believer in the principles of Federalism, and want a strong government. I also want them off my back, out of my wallet and bedroom and to do what they are Constitutionally mandated to do; provide for the common defence, ensure domestic tranquility, and promote the general welafare of the people. Also, while they may need to watch people to secure these objectives, must always be watched by the people. That’s all of our jobs, and not those who are elected into power.
Our Constitution is meant to protect the common man from overzealous government. It is time that John and Jane Q. Citizen remember that by bringing back a healthy dose of skepticism towards government and defense of the guarantees of civil liberties and rights enjoyed by common citizens we demonstrate the values of the Founders of our Republic. That is called Patriotism, and it is neither a Republican, Democrat, Conservative or Liberal responsibility. In that view, to paraphrase Jefferson’s inaugural address, we are all Republicans and we are all Democrats.