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The BILL of RIGHTS - EXPOSED"
Variously compiled, edited, and written by William H. Huff - 1998
During the years 1787-1789 the States of the Union were considering and Ratifying the Constitution for the United States of America. Each State summoned a convention to ratify the Constitution that would form the government under which the appointed trustees of We the People would perform the limited duties assigned to them by that marvelous document.
The conventions were concerned that it should be made immutably clear that the States and the People were not surrendering any rights or privileges in addition to those explicitly endowed to the new federal government by the Constitution.
A common sense reading of the Bill of Rights would give most citizens a good idea of the great body of rights that were to remain under the inviolable control of the People and the States respectively. Yet, today, many Americans have been so well "educated" that they are easily led astray by charlatans and demagogues who would twist and bend the meanings of words and concepts until they would emasculate our Bill of Rights and leave us as serfs or slaves to a government out of control; a government that now wishes to assert its "rights" to rule OVER the People. The "tail would wag the dog."
The missing component that prevents many of us from understanding the original intent of our Bill of Rights is CONTEXT. If we read the Bill of Rights without being familiar with other contemporary documents, we may, through no fault of our own, be drawn away into an "understanding" of the document that is far removed from the original meaning. But, if we can read the rest of the entire Ratification documents, we are reading a summary of what the States expected of the new Constitution. We are reading precisely what the original intent of the Bill of Rights IS because these are the most succinct expressions or summaries of ideas that were ultimately distilled into that most exquisite product, our Bill of Rights.
After a brief introduction and treatment of the preambles, The Bill of Rights EXPOSED takes the Ratification documents apart and collates them to each of the 10 Articles that became the first Ten Amendments to the Constitution. After reading one of the Articles, the reader finds immediately below it the language from the States that expound upon its concepts and lock it in to its original intent.
An 1828 Websters Dictionary is another indispensable tool that you will want to acquire to assist in understanding these documents. Noah Webster was the Father of American education and a contemporary of the Framers of the Constitution. No other dictionary will do if you want to learn the historical context of this period and comprehend American political philosophy.
In addition to collating the Amendments to the ratification documents, I have taken the remainder of the ratification texts and collated them to important political concepts e.g. treaty law, executive orders, direct taxation etc.
Finally, the book includes a copy of the entire collection of ratification documents for those who want to read them in their entire context.
This text will prove ideal for any citizen who is old enough to start learning how to assert his/her rights under the law and according to our American political philosophy - where the citizen is Sovereign and the government is servant. Children should be introduced to a study of their great American heritage not long after they have started reading. How else will they know all about the great body of God-given rights that We the People reserve to ourselves under the Constitution and Bill of Rights forged on our behalf by our great patriot forefathers? A middle school reading level will suffice in most cases for independent study, provided that the Original 1828 Webster's Dictionary is nearby for reference.
With regard to our servants in government and in those professions who presume they already comprehend the Bill of Rights adequately enough, we challenge them to spar even briefly with the great minds of Jefferson, Madison and others. Its time we all knew more about our rights as well as how to assert and preserve them. This book is another way for all of us to get up to Constitutional speed. We invite you to come and learn with us.
Don't forget our companion book:
Elementary Catechism on the Constitution of the United States
Our books can be customized for educators, schools, fundraisers, political campaigns and activist groups, even passivist groups.