This amendment seems like it should be awesome! Let’s read Section 1:

“All persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. 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 deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”

Okay, this sounds legit, right? No one, not even state governments, can deprive people of their rights.

The next logical question is: WHO will enforce this? Answer: the federal government. No longer would it be given to the people to do.

This means that, previously, it was up to the actual sovereign (We the People) to make sure The Declaration of Independence and the Constitution are followed, not the Feds. With this one fell swoop, it took that sovereignty and gave it to the big boys…who always screw things up. (If you disagree, name ONE THING they have done, that has interfered with the sovereignty of the people, that has turned out well.)

Now, this amendment is awesome because it reiterates what is already in the US Constitution. Here is the original, the 5th amendment:

“No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.”

What’s the difference? See how the 5th says NO PERSON shall have these things done to them, and the 14th specifically requires states to be held to this. This is quite different from the 5th, which is incumbent on everyone to follow. It’s a small difference, but it really does matter. See, before, We the People were charged with this responsibility, it was not delegated to the Feds. Did they all live up to it? No!! It was a high bar and people failed miserably.

BUT, it was getting better. I mean, Lincoln was voted in on a platform where one of the first agenda items was abolishing slavery! Granted, this scared the Democrats so much they tried to secede and started a war, but that’s another post altogether.

In other words, the only thing we needed to do, as a nation, was run on platforms that reiterated the need to follow the US Constitution. And, if anyone were to argue that blacks were not persons, they could just take the tact that Lincoln did when debating Douglas: make him prove his assertions. (Hint: he never could).

If you want to read about how Lincoln smoked Douglas in his ridiculous arguments that blacks should be allowed to be enslaved, please comment.

Please feel free to get a copy of my book The Declaration Made Easy by clicking the link at the right. It’s perfect for kids of all ages and really does make this amazing document easy to read! 😀



**updated spelling error 9/10