"Daniel Webster, James Otis, and Sir Edward Coke all pointed out that the mere fact of enactment does not and cannot raise mere statutes to the standing of law. Not everything can be considered the Law of the Land."
16 AM. JUR. 2nd Sec. 547.
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Reader comments about this quote:
We have thousands of "laws" and, unfortunatly, there are more on the way. It seems that the last vestige of Puritanism still pervades this country and requires that vices become crimes. The war on drugs is the perfect example, and because of this monstrosity, the prison business is thriving.
 -- jim k, Austin, Tx     
  • 2
    I agree with you Jim K - we have numerous laws that run counter to the Rule of Law, i.e., The Constitution "for" the United States. The "War On Drugs" is one of them that is a failed monstrosity that has created much destruction (drug cartels) and the loss of many innocent lives.
     -- Mary - MI     
  • 2
    This citation is exactly accurate, truthful, and depicts America's de jure jurisprudence ! ! ! The occupying statist theocracy that infests this land claims all of its canons to be absolute law jim, you're right; the only difference is the socialist puritans / control freaks have superseded anything their religious counterparts could have imagined on their best day.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
  • 2
    Mary--I agree with all above, but what to do with those who refuse to stop the drug abuse. If the government will not keep us safe from enemies foreign and domestic, and this is surely one of the threats, how should it be handled? Prison is obviously not the answer. People destroy their lives, crimes are committed in order to obtain either drugs or money to buy them, people under the influence maim or kill innocent people in accidents. Should the equivalent of opium dens be re-instituted and quarantined away from the normal population providing them with their poison of choice and let them slowly commit drug induced suicide?
     -- Carol, Georgia     
  • 1
    Carol, what you've expressed is true but out of scale. The prison overcrowding due to victimless crimes (2 ounces of pot in the back seat for example) is appalling. If a crime (an innocent third party's rights being violated - car crash, burglary, drug induced prostitution disease host, etc.) due to drug impairment or otherwise, an appropriate prison stent would only be part of the solution. Opium den equivalents may be part of the greater solution. Mary, ask yourself, what is the lawful / justice nexus that gives one individual / party the authority and right to force or punish another. (a social contract is a philosophical and despotic farce)
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
  • 2
    Regarding the laws prohibiting 'drugs' or alcohol, this is a declaration of war against people who are violating no one's rights. It is an offensive act with NO authority or consent granted -- it is mob rule, no less than a KKK lynching. And it is about MONEY and POWER, let there be no doubt. Alcohol prohibition birthed the police-state in which all are subject to arbitrary search and seizure -- everyone considered a suspect of breaking the law. Once that was struck down, the long arm of the law was used to enforce marijuana prohibition, then later whatever substances the government 'declared' prohibited. The drug war protects the monopoly on medicine by the medical union/establishment which profits immensely from pharmaceuticals that kill more people than all illegal drugs combined (not even close).

    Under Obama's EPA, federal jurisdiction is claimed over every State -- a pond must be approved or filled in. There are literally hundreds more examples of government overreach passing more 'laws' every day that are arbitrary and assumed to be in the jurisdiction of Congress.

    The IRS makes us sign our labors away, even though the study of the origin of the IRS and its powers reveal that most people are not subject to these taxes -- they have been conned into agreeing to pay them 'voluntarily.' Yet, just try and make this argument in a tax court (with no jury or due process).

    America's tryst with fiat banking, socialist democracy, and straight up authoritarianism are the balls and chains that hold us. Is there any hope for what John Adams called the 'American mind' ?
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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