"Absolute, arbitrary power
over the lives, liberty and property
of freemen exists nowhere in a republic,
not even in the largest majority."
Kentucky Declaration of Rights - Art. I, Sec. 2
also found in the Wyoming Declaration of Rights Art. I, Sec. 7
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Reader comments about this quote:
Amen. This statement makes one question the status of "Our Republic". Thank You.
 -- KS, Queensbury,NY.
Great Statement!
 -- Wanda Arnold, Owensboro, Kentucky
 -- P.M. 
This quote says the people are powerless that our government has all the power to control our lives.
 -- KERR, Modesto,CA.
Hey, KERR, I think you have it backwards. This is a declaration of the people limiting the power of government over themselves. The Declaration of Rights is the specific enumeration of inalienable rights -- thus declaraing for all time that never will the government be given arbitrary power over the People.
 -- Chicago
Makes me wish i lived in a republic!
 -- cal, lewisville, tx
cal, ;-) makes me wish I lived in a Constitutional Republic too.
 -- Mike, Norwalk
Our Republic has morphed into a democracy which is too bad for us. How far we have gone down hill is illustrated by the fact that we elected a socialist for president, backed by Pelosi, Boxer, Franks, Reed , Biden and a host of other fellow travelers. As to American voters, never underestimate the power of stupid people in large numbers.
 -- jim k, austin
 -- Logan, Memphis, TN 
Does this mean that we do not absolutely have to stop at a STOP SIGN and that making us do so or pay a penalty is arbitrary power seeking. (1) A republic most normally has laws, (2) laws are meant to be obeyed, (3) thus a republic has power over free men. If you wish to be truly free go live in the woods and stay out of republics and civilization. This statement is only poetic device or sentiment obviously not actually true.
 -- Waffler, Smith
A good recent example is the slim majority of 52% of California voters who denied marriage equality to a large group of its citizens. "In Germany, the Nazis first came for the communists, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a communist. Then they came for the Jews, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Jew. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a trade unionist. Then they came for the Catholics, but I didn't speak up because I was a protestant. Then they came for me, and by that time there was no one left to speak for me." -- Reverend Martin Niemoeller
 -- Jim, Stone Mountain, GA
Jim, excellent statements. A slight correction; voters did not deny marriage equality, they simply tried to legislate or otherwise impose marriage's original religious meaning. A license is: "A right given by some competent authority to do an act, which without such authority would be illegal" (Bouvier's Law Dictionary) Marriage is a religious sacrament that defines a covenant between two persons. Inclusive of that specific covenant, is an organized venue for such sacred ordinance(s) as pro-creation. Further, said religious covenant defines the duties, obligations, boundaries, and relationship to any extended life that may be brought to existence from such pro-creation activities. In a Representative Republic, such as was the U.S., the individual is sovereign with Creator endowed unalienable rights, he / she being king / queen - Caesar. The sovereign's hired servant's (government) authority is limited to his / its sovereign master's secular individuality. Religion's marriage predates the individual state's usurpation of such religious ordinance. Where or what is the lawful nexus that surrenders the sovereign's inalienable supreme authority and rights (religious and secular) to the once servant that the now, new master, claims said religious sacrament to be illegal without its license? There is no such lawful nexus. A licensed marriage (or any marriage where the secular government is a party) is contrary to common law, natural law, the sovereign / servant relationship, Creator endowed inalienable right, violates separation of church and state, and is an unlawful contradiction in terms. A gay marriage is also a contradiction in terms. The California vote does demonstrate a democracy's theocratic implementation.
 -- Mike, Norwalk
Mike, nice try, but I believe your logic is faulty. Two additional thoughts: "No state shall ... deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws" -- The Equal Protection Clause, part of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution; an attempt to secure the promise of the United States' professed commitment to the proposition that "all men are created equal" by empowering the judiciary to enforce that principle against the states. “Those who deny freedom to others, deserve it not for themselves; and, under a just God, can not long retain it." -- Abraham Lincoln
 -- Jim, Stone Mountain, GA
Jim, I am in absolute accord with your second, immediately above, post. My point was, when secular government attempts to legislate morality and religious ordinances, while legally redefining millennially aged definitions, no matter what they do, it will be wrong because such beliefs and actions are personal beyond the purview of government (there can be no equality for all). By religious definition, homosexual relationships are not equal to heterosexual relationships as no act of pro-creation exists. If a secular democracy wants to define a relationship, in secular terms, and then give mandate it to its inferiors, in privilege form (such collective being god to each individual), it is well within its purview. In a democracy, the California Supreme Court ruled correctly. In a representative republic, marriage is beyond the lawful purview of government.
 -- Mike, Norwalk
You guys by discussing rules, regulations, etc. whether they be secular, religious, government etcetera are proving the falsity of the quote. I sincerely believe that a republic is an organization created by men. Tell me of any organization of men that does not have authority. Tell me of a republic that ever existed that did not have courts, prisons etcetera. When you join or get involved with an organization you give up your absolute and arbitrary freedoms. You will behave and act within the boundaries of the organization.
 -- Waffler, Smith
Anonymous, you sound as shallow as Waffler, incapable of differentiating between a government of servants that act according to law and a government of masters that think they can make up law as they go. All rules, statutes, courts, prisons are not equal. Further, in all (-; 57 ;-) states, common law marriages are no longer accepted. And, even in those states that say they accept common law marriages it is only after you have complied with a check list of statutory requirements. (-; hmm, lol, not a lot of real common law when statutory requirements are involved;-) Thus, those heterosexual couples that choose not to enter a covenant of marriage are at a similar disadvantage as homosexuals in the current democratic theocracy. One good thing that may come out of the California Amendment, marriage may become an archaic term relegated to religious right wing extremists, to be left out of democracy's tyranny. That way, each individual may associate with another in their own way without government's amended, legislated, judicially ruled on, or otherwise religious term commandments.
 -- Mike, Norwalk
Waffler you take the ideas of liberty to new lows with small redundant arguments. The comparison is not between liberty and justice or liberty and ignorant laws of control. The comparison is between liberty and the fascist system we now live under. Try and elevate yourself above "stop signs".
 -- J Carlton, Calgary
J I chose stop signs because Mike of Norwalk has spoken of his disdain for such things as being required to stop at these things or to be required to drive on a particular side of the street. Now what is arbitray or absolute power. In society we have conventions or agreements to do things certain ways. If you do not do them that way then it is the individual who is considered to be arbitray. In England and Japan they drive differently. My examples may be silly and absurd but they just point out the failure of the quote to be really meaningful or a universal principle or statement.
 -- Waffler, Smith
Stop signs are not arbitrary, Waffler. Everyone is required to stop at them. Are some people in England exempted from having to drive on the left side of the road? It is when a government gives you special treatment that it does not give me that power becomes arbitrary. Special interests and lobbyists who bribe to get regulations that favor them over the competition is lawlessness. Politicians who enable and profit from them are lawbreakers. Speaking of lawlessness, it has been observed that the dealerships that have been slated to close were overwhelmingly Republican or Clinton donors in the last election, while those who are to remain open happened to be Obama donors. I'm sure it's just a coincidence though.
 -- Ken, Allyn, WA
Yes. In a TRUE REPUBLIC and where there are indeed FREEMEN!
 -- Anonymous
This law seems to only apply to men, which explains why the laws and those interpreting and giving to me to understand in terms of real and personal property, that I don't have any rights to my real and personal property as taken and controlled by a man. So, I think this quote, though provoking towards establishing equity, does not avail itself in my situation.
 -- Salome Kist, Carrollton, Kentucky
Never cared for Lincoln or the 14th amendment. Unjust law is no law to be observed . More mischief framed in a law !
 -- Ronw13, Yachats Or
A marriage is a union between a man and a woman!
nothing more need be said.
Gays must be free to enjoy rights guaranteed to all people without prejudice. they free to form a union but it will never be a marriage.
 -- Hark, NYC
You were free to do so in the beginning. Why spoil it ! Why do you think the French joined the fight in the first Place !
 -- Ronw13, Yachats Or
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