January 24, 2010

Corporate "Speech" is Inferior to Human "Speech"

More of my reaction to Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission,

I've no problem with corporations being granted rights. Rule sets are necessary for the proper operation of these constructs. However, I have a distinct and visceral negative reaction to the idea that a corporation should have equality of stature to humans under the Constitution in frankly any dimension. I think the Court overreaches when it elevates these entities to the same level of humans under the Constitution. Its a slippery slope to say that corporations are "persons" with rights equal to human beings under the Constitution, and I want to know where does it end. If their "speech" is equal to mine, the vote is political "speech". If they are persons, why not just give them the franchise? All of the rights of individual, flesh and blood human beings under our constitution flow from the fact that we are endowed by the Creator with certain inalienable rights. This cannot be said of corporations. How do we get to conferring these rights onto an artificial, legal construct made by humans? Consider the ways in which corporations are entirely different from humans:

1. A corporation does not understand what is right or wrong.
2. The vast majority of corporations are for purposes of commerce and have only one motive: to make it's stockholders/owners money.
3. A corporation can not be imprisoned and understands no sense of punishment.
4. A corporation has no lifespan.

I have a problem with a ruling that elevates the "speech' of such an entity under the constitution to a level equal to that of a human being. The ruling itself references the fact that corporations are derivative constructs, created products of human activity, and cites this fact as a rationale for why their speech should not be restricted, but this is precisely the reason why their "speech" should not be accorded the same merit as that of an individual under the constitution. The rights of humans under the Constitution flow from the fact that we have certain inalienable rights granted by our Creator to us as living souls. Corporations do not qualify on this metric and their "speech' should not be accorded an equal status to individuals under the constitution.