Coronavirus lockdowns violate the US Constitution and the Rule of Law

Thanks to our abysmal educational system most of us do not have a proper understanding of the US Constitution, mostly in regards to the relationship between the federal government and states. Under the original understanding of the Constitution the States are mostly independent nations held together by a weak federal government.  That has not changed, only our elected officials have ignored the original meaning. 

The US Constitution as originally ratified only restrained the states in a few key areas, all of which are listed in Article 1 Section 10.  It was very difficult for state laws to violate the US Constitution.   We have been conditioned to mistakenly believe the Supreme Court has the authority overturn state laws and state laws do regularly violate the US Constitution. 

If it was not for the ratification of the Fourteenth Amendment the state Coronavirus lockdowns and other actions would not violate the US Constitution.  Here are the clauses of that amendment which are violated by the state lockdowns.

No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor to deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

The shelter in place orders and similar lockdown orders deprive a large percentage of the inhabitants of the states of their liberty.  Liberty is the freedom to do as you please as long as you don’t hurt anyone.  A state or local government can only deprive an individual of their liberty if that individual has been found guilty in a court of law. There are no exceptions for emergencies.  Forcing stores to close also violates the liberty of the owners and workers of the stores.

Labeling certain individuals as essential and others not essential workers and allowing them to travel based on that classification violates the equal protection clause.  Closing only certain stores also violates the equal protection clause.

According the Section Five of the Fourteenth Amendment the US congress through the formal legislative process not the Supreme Court has the authority to overturn state laws that violate that amendment.  That was done in response to the Dred Scott Case.

Lockdowns violate the Rule of Law.  This concept is defined by the Oxford Dictionary as:

The restriction of the arbitrary exercise of power by subordinating it to well-defined and established laws

These lockdowns are arbitrary rules made up by governors.  They apply only to certain individuals.  They are not well thought out and do tremendous harm.  They are unjust rules.

Be careful which dictionary you use, some are deeply erroneous.  Here is how the Merriam Webster dictionary defines the Rule of Law “a situation in which the laws of a country are obeyed by everyone.” For the Rule of Law to apply the law must be just and it must be a valid law passed by those with the proper authority.  Ignoring or protesting unjust laws are valid methods of maintaining the Rule of Law.

The Coronavirus lockdowns and everything else violate state constitutions and state laws. That is the proper level for fighting these unjust rules and practices.

Leave a Reply