Submitted by M. R. Hamilton on
Many people depend on their state Constitutions for protection against government overreach. People misperceive that something in their state constitution grants their state governments authority over said people. However, once people learn to differentiate between people and person and people and persons, it becomes much easier to tell which part of the constitution may apply to him/her/them and which applies to other persons.
One of the things to look for when reading a constitution is whether or not a phrase is limiting government or grating government authority. When reading any constitution one will soon see that when government is being limited, the section or clause will be discussing people. When granting government authority, the section of clause will be referring to persons.
So how can we confirm that there is a difference between a people and a person? Well, let us read Section 9 of the Texas Constitution, which states,
SEARCHES AND SEIZURES. The people shall be secure in their persons, houses, papers and possessions, from all unreasonable seizures or searches, and no warrant to search any place, or to seize any person or thing, shall issue without describing them as near as may be, nor without probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation.
Ah, here we see that a person is something that can be owned by a people. Hmm, must be some truth to the matter about there being a difference. Actually, the term person refers to the legal substance of an individual. An individual can be a people, but it can also be a corporation, a trust (which is a type of corporation) a town, a city a county or even a state, and the state's corporation like the State of Texas.
Just read any sign, statute or regulation and it become abundantly clear. People are not subject to government rule. Persons can be if they are not people. Just read the HOV signs on the highway that say, "2 or more persons". Any regulation will state "No person" or "all persons". They never say "no people" or "all people", because government has not authority to tell people what to do. If it ever does, you must challange government jurisdiction.