What is Liberty?

Liberty is what allows us to pursue our fundamental rights without government restraint or restriction. 

What are Fundamental Rights? 

Fundamental Rights are God given because we are born with them. Fundamental rights are not political or controversial. Fundamental rights are unanimously accepted. Governments cannot create or improve rights; they can only protect them. Governments cannot take fundamental rights away, except for punishment for violating the rights of another person (i.e., imprisonment for a crime). Fundamental rights do not conflict with other rights, and they all have the same intrinsic value. In other words, one right is not any more important than another. In Washington v. Glucksberg (1997) the Supreme Court attempted to define fundamental rights by concluding they are deep rooted in American history and culture.

In actuality, American citizens have an infinite number of fundamental rights. For example, we can choose to brush our teeth or to take a shower. The Constitution and Bill of Rights protect many fundamental rights such as the right to speech, religion or conscience, self-defense, due process or justice, property, and the ability to enter into contracts. Voting privileges were granted to everyone with the passage of the Thirteenth and Nineteenth Amendments. These are enumerated rights. We also enjoy unenumerated rights protected by the Ninth Amendment such as the right to obtain knowledge, to life, Liberty, to create friendships, to raise a family, to marriage, to unrestricted travel, to enjoy lawful recreational activities, to work a lawful profession, to choose, to privacy, the ability to pursue health, to equality, to safety, to profit from our labor, to have representation in government, to have the capability to pursue happiness, and the antiwelfare right. These are our most important rights, and they can encompass many of our unlimited rights. For instance, the right to choose and to pursue health would protect our right to brush our teeth or take a shower. The right to choose and privacy are predicated on two points: the action is moral, and the action is not an emotional one. For example, a person cannot choose to murder someone and expect that choice to be protected from liability. Furthermore, criminal activities done in private cannot be protected actions.

Under our Constitution, we the people have more authority and sovereignty than the government. The Constitution is a framework, guideline, and prohibition on the government, not the people. The government is not independent to act because they answer to the people.

What is the function of government?

The sole purpose people consent to be governed is for the protection of their Liberty, property, and fundamental rights regardless of their beliefs or diversity factors.  

What is the difference between Liberty and freedom?

The difference is the same as the difference between a Democracy and a Republic. Freedom is synonymous with a Democracy. People have the freedom to pursue their rights so long as the government or a majority rule does not take away those rights. That is why our Founders provided us with Liberty and created a Constitutional Republic, not a Democracy! Liberty is a Republic principle that protects our rights so they cannot be taken away by any person, majority, or government. If our government is eliminating or mitigating rights, then they are in violation of both the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution which specifically defends Liberty above freedom. 

How is Liberty protected in the United States?

By limiting the power of the federal and state governments so supremacy or sovereignty resides with “We the people.” This is accomplished in the Constitution by placing several limits on the structure of the United States government. First, there are separation of powers between the branches of government (legislative, executive, and judicial). Second, the Ninth Amendment and Liberty are synonymous in that sovereignty resides with the people. Liberty is a fundamental right, but it is much more powerful because, like the Ninth Amendment, it protects all of our legal actions to execute any fundamental right. Finally, using federalism or power sharing between the federal and state governments defined by the Tenth Amendment. How does the federal government infringe on our fundamental rights or Liberty? One reason is because the Ninth and Tenth Amendments have been labeled as truisms with no intrinsic meaning by Justice Stanley Reed in United Public Workers v. Mitchell (1947). The Ninth and Tenth Amendments are what made the United States unique and unlike any country in the world. Omit, ignore, and redact those two amendments, then the federal government has nothing to keep them from going rogue by taking grants of power outside their enumerated authorities.

Furthermore, removing the true wisdom and knowledge behind the Ninth and Tenth Amendments makes the United States average and similar to other western civilizations. The above-mentioned government structure protections make the United States a government of laws, not of people. Once people garner more power than the law, like the power displayed by Justice Stanley Reed in Mitchell to downplay two important amendments, then Liberty will be encroached and mitigated.

Describe the United States in one word?

The Statue of Liberty is a symbol that every immigrant would see upon entry into New York Bay when arriving by sea. Immigrants who pass the Statue of Liberty or the metaphorical “golden door”, enter into the United States in search of Liberty and an opportunity for a better life. In other words, if we had to describe the United States in one word, from our Founders perspective, it would be Liberty! Unfortunately, today, most Americans would choose a different word to describe this great country. It is the mission of Libertarians to restore Liberty and the Constitution as our Founders had envisioned.