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THE RULE OF LAW: What It is and what It is not

We need to have a discussion about something too many speak about but too few understand: the rule of law.  Of necessity, this will be a long post – and even then, it will still be too short to touch on everything that needs to be said.  But still, we must address this issue, if only to assert that there is such a thing, that it has clear characteristics and that this definition does not change with time or culture.  Else we lose the very idea of justice all together.  We start with the words of the Roman statesman – and one of our founders’ favorite pagans — Marcus Tillius Cicero:

True law isright reasonin agreement with nature;  it is of universal application, unchanging and everlasting;  it summons to duty by its commands, and averts from wrongdoing by its prohibitions…It is a sin to try to alter this law, nor is it allowable to repeal any part of it, and it is impossible to abolish it entirely.  We cannot be freed from its obligations by senate or people, and we need not look outside ourselves for an expounder or interpreter of it.  And there will not be different laws at Rome and at Athens, or different laws now and in the future, but one eternal and unchangeable law will be valid for all nations and at all times, and there will be one master and ruler, that is God, over us all, for he is the author of this law, its promulgator and its enforcing judge. Whoever is disobedient is fleeing from himself and denying his human nature, and by reason of this very fact he will suffer the worst punishment.”

Read the rest, you might find a very interesting way of looking at the Constitution in this one.

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