The Constitution Cannot Be Amended By Changing The Meaning Of Words
The Constitution of the United States defines two methods by which it can be changed: by Amendment and by Constitutional Convention. In both cases, two thirds of the States must accept the changes in order for them to be ratified and become a permanent part of our Constitution. Any attempt to change the Constitution outside of these two methods is – by definition – unconstitutional. This means it is not law and the people have no moral obligation to hold themselves bound by the change. In fact, an attempt to alter or change the Constitution by any means other than the amendment or convention process constitutes subversion, which every citizen has a moral obligation to resist. This applies to Congress’ latest attempt to nullify the 1st Amendment:
The Senate Judiciary Committee approves a media shield bill to keep ‘real reporters’ from having to testify on their work.
On the surface, this story makes it sound as though Congress is trying to protect the 1st Amendment, but, as with so many things in Washington, the reality is just the opposite. This story is about Congress establishing control over the 1st Amendment by giving itself the power to define the meaning of words:
The 1st Amendment reads:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
But notice: these stories are about a bill addressing journalism, not the press. This is the first deliberate attempt at deception. It provides Congress with a false defense. They will claim they did not write a law concerning the press, therefore, they did not violate the 1st Amendment. But they cannot get away with this if we know the truth behind the words of the 1st Amendment. The definition of press reads as follows:
b : the act or the process of printing
c : a printing or publishing establishment
7a : the gathering and publishing or broadcasting of news : journalism
b : newspapers, periodicals, and often radio and television news broadcasting
c : news reporters, publishers, and broadcasters
d : comment or notice in newspapers and periodicals <is getting a good press>
Notice, journalism is only one aspect of the definition of ‘press.’ Now, in our founders’ time, this was not the definition they used. Thomas Paine, the man who wrote “Common Sense” and several other pamphlets responsible for helping to launch the American Revolution, was not a journalist: he was a pamphleteer, a commentator, and opinion man. In other words, he was the equivalent of a Revolutionary-age blogger. This is what our founder’s meant when they said Congress has no authority over the press.
But there’s more. Notice these words in the 1st Amendment:
“…or abridging the freedom of speech,…”
This is a guarantee to every individual, and it is yet another place where Congress and the courts have altered the Constitution without amending it or going through the convention process. The right to free speech never extended to the right to say whatever we feel like, and it definitely did not extend to actions. Actions are not speech, but we have given them the equivalent of speech under our laws. This is a bastardization of the law. What our founders intended to protect was political speech; the ability to object to our government and to the policies of those in government without fear of reprisal from that government. This is exactly what the ‘Journalism Shield’ law is all about: a reprisal against those who are objecting to those in power.
Under this new law, only the people our government decides it will recognize as journalists will be afforded their Constitutional protections. Anyone outside the government definition of journalist will be subject to differential treatment under the law – another violation of the Constitution (this time, the 14th Amendment). By any objective standard, this is a clear act of subversion: it is the deceitful dismantling of our 1st Amendment protections. Simply stated, this is an act of tyranny.
Before leaving this subject, let’s remind ourselves that this is how slavery was justified and the Holocaust, too: by re-defining who is and who is not human. If they can do that to human beings simply by changing the definition of words, then what is to stop them from doing whatever they wish – except opposition from you and I?