The Dancer in the Shadows

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Natural Rights and the United States Constitution

I stumbled across someone's writing and a notable error in the author's understanding of Rights and the United States Constitution struck me as one of the roots of some of the problems currently faced in the world today.

Contrary to what many seem to believe, the United States Constitution does not grant any Rights at all.  The Constitution, and the Bill of Rights in particular, recognizes life, liberty, communication, expression, self defense, association, privacy, etc, as Natural Rights that all humans possess and no individual or organization is justified in ever taking any of these Natural Rights away from anyone.  In fact, the Ninth Amendment fairly explicitly states this:

    The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

A rough translation into modern American English is, "this isn't a complete list, and the government isn't allowed to step on any Natural Rights just because they weren't listed here."  For this to 'not be a complete list,' logically, the Constitution can't be granting anything, only recognizing what already exists.

What I can't answer, because I simply do not know, is how we came to a point where anyone believes the Constitution grants any rights.  I remember this as being both quite obvious from reading the Constitution, and the Declaration of Independence, and later being very clearly taught in my United States history and government classes.

--- The Dancer in the Shadows

Monday, August 26, 2013


Emotions are rarely wise, but then I think they are specifically supposed to be a counterbalance to wisdom so we remain compassionate, no matter how wise we become.

--- The Dancer in the Shadows

Monday, August 19, 2013


This morning as I rode in to work, my thoughts turned toward contemplations that I would have liked to have posted here... and now that I am at a computer rather than astride a steel horse galloping in excess of 100 km/h, I can't even remember the topic I was thinking about, let alone the thoughts I had intended to post...


--- The Dancer in the Shadows

Tuesday, August 06, 2013

Feeling... Blah... When Able to Type

I'm finding this very frustrating...  While at a computer when I am able to type here, I'm usually either buried in work, or my mind is mostly blank.  This leaves me with either nothing to write, or no time to write it.

However, while I'm driving, riding my Steel Horse, Ezzy, riding my bicycle, etc...  Places where it is very dangerous (at best) for me to type, my mind races through subjects, sometimes three or four at a time in parallel, that I really want to write about.

Some of them are topics to think about, to get out in words for contemplation.  A couple of them are story pieces I want to rework, and am considering doing that here.

--- The Dancer in the Shadows