A very short recap of the last 245 years….
The founding fathers of this country were primarily plantation owners; those with enough wealth to leave their families for significant periods of time, enough clout and name recognition to gain the backing of people in their home states, and enough schooling to navigate the intricacies of the new political and legal system they were creating. Most of them owned slaves and were already powerful in their home states, so they looked out for their own personal interests and power as well and even better than they protected the interests of their constituency.
So I believe that the Constitution and the Bill of Rights and our legal underpinnings had a distinct bias toward property rights that had its roots in Catholicism and the Dark and Middle Ages where property all belonged to the fiercest warrior who made himself King or Emperor and used even his wife and children to support his preeminence and his right to own and control everything in sight.
Over the years, we’ve had battles. The most vicious was the Civil War during which the Republican Party strongly pulled back on states’ rights as well as the overreaching property rights of slavery. It was a step away from property rights and toward human rights.
Now the Republican Party is on the other side fighting to stay alive as they support property rights, ownership rights, inheritance rights, and huge loopholes in our tax laws for those already well-heeled and in control of our means of production and distribution against the human rights exemplified in the fights to limit distribution of assault weapons and handguns, curtail the abuses of power by police and laws against disadvantaged people including immigrants, people of color, and native Americans. Black Lives Matter was already a fight when I was in college and, in taking courses in Comparative Culture, I saw the discrimination clearly and unambiguously.
I also think that the movement that Jimmy Carter started toward world peace and human equality and Ronald Reagan ended abruptly and decisively may also be at stake here, although worldwide justice isn’t yet on the Democratic radar. I can hope and my hope increases substantially if we all get behind the basic principal of no special privileges for the wealthy and powerful; that government treats everyone fairly.
Sadly, we’ve still got a long ways to go in just this country, let alone this planet But let’s start it by supporting voting rights for everyone and stop the voter suppression that was best characterized by the Republican control of the South when it took Federal troops to allow blacks to vote or go to a decent school. I remember it well. That turning point, led by the unlikely LBJ of Texas, brought us together for a while. Some may still see it as Federal Government overreach. I see it as an absolute duty to our founding principle: “All men [and women] are created equal….”