This proof was first discovered and published in 2011, and improved and revised in January, 2017. Each of the five bullet points below contain a specific Constitutional reference and quotation. The arguments following each of these bullet points are independent of each other, but they mutually reinforce the contention in the title of this essay.
Article I Section 2 of the U.S. Constitution explains how the House of Representatives is to be “composed” and “chosen … by the People”. The third paragraph of Section 2 explains how Representatives are to be apportioned among the states by identifying and counting “Persons”. Quoted here are the pertinent first two sentences from the third paragraph of Article I Section 2: The first sentence directs that the “Representatives … shall be apportioned among the several States … according to their respective Numbers, which shall be determined by adding to the whole Number of free Persons, including those bound to Service for a Term of Years, and excluding Indians not taxed, three fifths of all other Persons.” The second sentence explicitly mandates that every ten years, “The actual enumeration shall be made … [by] the Congress of the United States … in such Manner as they shall by Law direct”.
The first sentence of paragraph 3 names two categories of “Persons”. Those two categories are (a) “free Persons“, including those bound to Service for a Term of Years, and excluding Indians not taxed” and (b) “all other Persons“. The “all other Persons“ category means that the Constitution mandated the identifying of EVERY “Person” every ten years in order to accomplish the all-important task of apportioning the representation of “Persons” in Congress. The definition of what is and is not a Constitutional “Person” was and remains today critically important, since the Constitution was helping chart a course towards a powerful historical precedent that all persons have inherent rights; that the people are sovereign in their government, which should honor and protect those rights; and to ensure equal representation of all persons.
The second sentence of paragraph 3 delegated to the U.S. Congress the sole authority and responsibility to “direct”, “by Law”, the “manner” of “the actual enumeration” of all “Persons”. In exercising that Constitutional authority, the Congress identified all women, men, and children who were not slaves, but who resided in one of the states, as “free Persons”. Congress identified slaves in the United States as being in the “all other Persons” category. Be sure to notice that “slaves” is not the category; “all other Persons” is the category. The Constitution even identified certain specific “Persons” who were not to be counted for purposes of representation in Congress. The U.S. Congress was thus directed to identify ALL “Persons”, without exception, and to count (or not count) them according to the formula provided. Bottom line? At least once every succeeding decade, beginning in 1790, the U.S. Congress has consistently and unambiguously, and in full compliance with the U.S. Constitution and the authority explicitly delegated to it, defined and identified a Constitutional “Person” precisely as a human being that has been born alive, is currently under the jurisdiction of the United States, but has not yet died. That’s it! That is the Constitutional definition of the word “Person”, which the Congress has consistently applied and used for over two centuries in complying with Article I Section 2. Note that the U.S. Constitution did not allow any “person” to be excluded from this definition on account of age, sex, race, color, origin, or for any other reason. The bad news for corporatists, oligarchs, and other enemies of democracy, of course, is that Congress has never identified, much less counted, a corporation (aka chartered companies) as a “Person”, in either Constitutional category – including, of course, the encompassing category, “all other Persons”. By the separation of powers doctrine, the President does not have the Constitutional authority to decide what is or is not a “Person”. Neither does the supreme Court! Congress alone was delegated that Constitutional authority. The supreme Court may weigh in regarding the meaning of “equal protection” or “due process”, for example, but it may not legally re-define the Constitutional meaning of the word “person” any more than it may legally impeach anyone, regulate commerce, or command the armed forces. This proof alone is so clear and unambiguous that no rational argument that is based on the U.S. Constitution can be made in contradiction. The people and the Congress of the United States cannot allow any party – including the supreme Court – to usurp the authority and the responsibility, which was delegated to the U.S. Congress by our Constitution, and which has been so clearly, so consistently, and so unambiguously applied by the Congress, ever since the U.S. Constitution was ratified. The Supreme Court can only defend that long standing, never altered, common-sense Constitutional definition of a “Person” – it may not change it.
Article III Section 2 – defines and limits the authority of the supreme Court. The 2nd sentence of the 2nd paragraph of Section 2 states: “In all the other Cases before mentioned, the supreme Court shall have appellate Jurisdiction, both as to Law and Fact, with such Exceptions, and under such Regulations as the Congress shall make.”
Article III establishes that the supreme Court is only “supreme” with respect to any “inferior” courts, not with respect to the U.S. Congress. No additional or explanatory comment will be made here regarding Article III Section 2 other than to remark that the entirety of Section 2 should be read to provide context to this quotation, and to note that this reference is separate from the other four items of proof, none of which depend on this item.
The third sentence of Article IV Section 2 states: “No Person held to Service or Labor in one State, under the Laws thereof, escaping into another, shall in Consequence of any Law or Regulation therein, be discharged from such Service or Labor, but shall be delivered up on Claim of the Party to whom such Service or Labor may be due.”
This is the horrendous but clear Constitutional sentence which authorized the notorious Fugitive Slave Laws! The curious and unique thing about this particular Constitutional sentence, which so strongly buttresses our proof, is that both the word “Person“ and the word “Party” are here used in the same sentence. And the reason that both words are used in this particular sentence helps to clarify the Constitutional definitions of those words. The word “Person“ in this sentence refers to a human being who is presumed to be an escaped slave. So this sentence confirms [as does Art I Sect 2 (see above), and the first sentence of Art I Sect 9] that (although the actual words “slave” and “slavery” ironically never appeared in the U.S. Constitution prior to the abolition of slavery) a slave was most certainly a “Person” in the precise meaning of the U.S. Constitution. But various institutions and chartered companies, including entire colonies – not just individual human beings – owned slaves, so – and this is important – the word “Person“ could not possibly describe or encompass every slave owner. A huge percentage of all slaves in America were not owned by a person, they were owned by a colony or by a chartered company or by an estate, etc! Therefore the Founders carefully and accurately used the word “Party“ here [and for similar reasons, it’s also used elsewhere in the Constitution, to refer to and include various artificial legal entities] to make clear that ALL owners of slaves, whether they be corporations (artificial legal entities) or persons (living human beings), could insist that those persons who the self-described “owner” alleged had managed to escape from slavery into a “free” state, could and legally should be summarily apprehended and returned to slavery, with no hearing or appeal. It is deliciously ironic that this particular sentence, which wealthy entities profiting off of the human misery and the human tragedy of slavery and the slave trade, greedily insisted be included in our nation’s founding document, so clearly buttresses our unassailable argument today that the legitimate Constitutional definition of “Person” NEVER has included artificial legal entities of any kind.
The 14th Amendment was one of three amendments (13th, 14th, and 15th) that were ratified following the Civil War to abolish slavery and require that basic human and civil rights be upheld and not violated. The first three sentences of the 14th Amendment state: “Section 1. All persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws. Section 2. Representatives shall be apportioned among the several States according to their respective numbers, counting the whole number of persons in each State, excluding Indians not taxed.”
The 13th Amendment abolishes the enslavement of anyone; not “just” the enslavement of people of color. Very briefly, the 14th Amendment, for the first time, defines citizenship in the United States, it establishes that certain basic human and civil rights trump state power, and it prohibits any state from denying the equal protection of the law to any “person”. Every person’s Constitutional rights are thus increased and protected by those two amendments, not “just” the rights of people of color.
The 13th and 14th Amendments were, and are today, be extremely important in constitutionally establishing the civil rights of people of color, despite the fact that they do not even mention race or color. Paradoxically, it is very fortunate for everybody, including people of color, that the 13th and the 14th Amendments do not mention race or color. One really important advantage of these two amendments not even mentioning race or color – and the importance of ALL of us understanding what those amendments actually do for ALL of us – is that they are less vulnerable to racist attack and ‘divide-and-conquer’ undermining, since the basic human rights of every human being are strengthened and protected by these two amendments – not “just” the rights of the direct historical victims of colonial slavery and their descendants. If any person or power tries to undermine, weaken, compromise, or even abolish the 13th or the 14th Amendments, it is directly attacking the basic rights of every single person in the USA. Any person who thinks that the 13th and 14th Amendments provide special rights that only benefit so-called ‘minorities’ or people of color is a badly misinformed victim of lies. Just read the first sentence in the 13th Amendment, and then read the first two sentences of the 14th Amendment. Those words strengthen and protect your human rights, no matter who you are. The 13th and 14th Amendments are not just amendments that benefited and protected African slaves and their descendants. They benefit and protect the rights of every single person living in America, now and in the future. It’s true that the Amendments were motivated by the movement to abolish slavery, and to establish equal rights following the victory in the Civil War, but the Amendments themselves do not restrict their protections only to persons who had been slaves. The rights of ALL persons were substantially extended and explicitly protected by those two Amendments.
Tragically, the Constitutional human rights that were established by all three Amendments were ignored, violated, and blatantly denied for many generations, and the 14th was also turned upside down to try to fraudulently usurp for corporations the Constitutional rights of a person, while incomprehensibly and also simultaneously allowing states to continue to deny the right to vote, and other basic civil rights, both to women and to persons of color, despite the due process and equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment. However, the simple truth is that the first three sentences of the 14th Amendment, together with subsequent actions of Congress, actually seal the airtight proof that a corporation is not a Constitutional “person”. The 14th Amendment altered neither the authority of Congress, nor the Constitutional definition of the word “Person” as Congress had consistently applied it under Article I Section 2 (see above). The 14th merely removed the distinction between “free Persons” and “all other Persons”, and mandated Congress’ identifying and “…counting the whole number of persons in each State…”, (again, with the single now archaic exception of persons who were once considered “Indians not taxed”). And for the following 140 plus years right through the present time, the Congress has continued to comply with its Constitutional mandate, using precisely the same definition of the Constitutional word “person” that it used during the more than seventy years between the ratification of the Constitution, and the ratification of the 14th Amendment.
The definition of the word “person”, appearing in each of the first three consecutive sentences of the 14th Amendment – indeed, the meaning anywhere in the Constitution of any such word of surpassing importance – cannot reasonably be supposed to change, willy nilly, without warning or explicit re-definition, from one clause, sentence or Article to the next.
Not unless we the people concede that the Constitution itself is indeterminate, and that our inherent rights as well as our government are up for grabs – with mega-corporations and their legal resources having an overwhelming, decisive advantage over us mere mortals. Since 1790, the Congress has been mandated by the Constitution to “direct” the “manner” of identifying and counting “persons”. And the consistent, unambiguous history of that enumeration, throughout the more than 22 consecutive decades beginning with the ratification of our Constitution, has established beyond question the precise Constitutional definition of the word “person”. Note that the Congress has never once identified or counted a corporation as a “person” during our entire history as a nation. That definition provides air-tight proof that a corporation is NOT a Constitutional “person”, and does not have the Constitutional rights of a “person”.
~ [Note: It is best to have a complete, accurate copy of the Constitution before you when considering this proof, so that you can see for yourself the context of these sentences, as well as verify that the quotations provided here are accurate, and also to satisfy yourself that there are no sentences in the Constitution, which would tend to contradict the Constitutional meaning of the word “person” that is so straightforwardly established by these sentences, and by the U.S. Congress in complying with its Constitutional mandate.]
If you like, use these tweets, which summarize the proof that a corporation is not a Constitutional “person”:
Congress alone was delegated authority to define the word “Person”
in conformity with the Constitution as mandated by Art 1 Sec 2 para 3
a Constitutional “person” is a human being that is born but not dead.
SCOTUS is not authorized to change that definition. Art I Sec 2 para 3
Since 1790 a corporation is NOT a Constitutional “person”.
See Art I Sec 2 para 3; Art IV Sec 2 para 3; and 14th Amendment first 3 sentences