The Senator spoke about ‘personal autonomy or liberty’, the Preamble of the Constitution, and the Founding Father’s intent in the context of his new book. The broadcast is still being played on the air but it is not downloadable, available only as a paid product. Unfortunately I cannot quote from the interview having listened to it a single time, however Mr. Santorum stated a similar position while speaking at the Heritage Foundation, shown in this excerpt from an article by Charles Colson, To ?Promote the General Welfare?: Marriage and the Common Good:
…He [Sen. Santorum] began by reminding his audience that one of the purposes of government, laid out in the Preamble to the Constitution, is to ?promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity.?
The ?general welfare? is not about individual gain, said Santorum, but about the common good?what is beneficial to all Americans. In contrast, the so-called ?right to privacy,? which has been at the heart of many of the Supreme Court?s recent decisions, has only self-interest in mind. The right to privacy?which is not even in the Constitution, but rather has been ?found? by an activist court?started with the sexual revolution and has led to many so-called ?rights? that are similarly self-centered. These include abortion and, now, with the Supreme Court?s recent Lawrence decision, the right to any form of consensual sex. Santorum called the right to privacy a ?me-centered? right…
During the on-air interview, Senator Santorum also went on to explain how parts of the Preamble to the Constitution such as ‘We the People’ and the ‘active phrases’ ; ‘ form’, ‘establish’, ‘insure’, ‘provide for’, ‘promote’, and ‘secure’ were meant to imply (by our Founding Fathers) a necessary sacrifice on the behalf of every citizen for the ‘common good’ of all citizens. That we all have a personal responsibility to ‘insure domestic tranquility’ for the common good.
Now let’s look at the Preamble:
We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.
The Preamble simply explains the purposes of the Constitution, and defines the powers of the new government as originating from the people of the United States, but it is just as important what it DOES NOT say as well. It does not say ‘We the People’ are building a Union for the ‘common good’, nor can one insert ‘for the common good’ or anything else at the end of the each ‘active phrase’ to imply some other unintended meaning. The words should not be taken out of context by themselves–It should be read as written, and understood as such.
When I apply Mr. Santorum’s ideas to the Preamble it becomes misleading, implying that we have a responsibility to sponsor a welfare state or a socialist democracy. In addition, any Creator given, freeborn unalienable rights I may have are a kind of narcissistic self-indulging behavior void of concern for the ‘common good’. His dim view on personal liberty becomes even more clear when you read statements such as this one from a recent NPR interview :
” This whole idea of personal autonomy ? I don?t think that most conservatives hold that point of view. Some do. And they have this idea that people should be left alone to do what they want to do, that government should keep taxes down, keep regulation down, that we shouldn?t get involved in the bedroom, that we shouldn?t be involved in cultural issues, people should do whatever they want. Well, that is not how traditional conservatives view the world. And I think that most conservatives understand that we can?t go it alone, that there is no such society that I?m aware of where we?ve had radical individualism and it has succeeded as a culture.”
At this point it is obvious that Mr. Santorum hasn’t bothered to take into consideration Article IV of the Bill of rights, nor does he give any creedence to Common Law. In his New World Order, government regulations and taxes should be kept at a maximum for the common good and the government belongs not only in every cultural aspect of your life but EVEN your bedroom! Senator Santorum has decided this because, well frankly none of us can ‘go it alone’. Furthermore he associates ‘autonomy’ with ‘radical individualism’ when in fact the the dictionary definition of ‘autonomy’ is ‘the right or condition of self-government’. Is government for the people by the people truly radical Senator?!!
If Mr. Santorum represents a new movement within the neo-conservative Republican party, our country’s future certainly looks bleak at best. I shudder to think about what may lie ahead for all of us between the descending value of the dollar and people like Mr. Santorum who see personal liberty such as ‘the pursuit of happiness’ and a desire for low taxation and minimum regulation as ‘radical’. ‘We the People’ have inherent autonomy Mr. Santorum, so watch out!