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Enforcing the rule of law

Updated on August 23, 2015

The rule of law is a philosophy which is currently missing from the actions of the federal government. We are a nation of laws and those laws need to be enforced as they are written not by the arbitrary decisions made by individual government officials. The executive departments and agencies are assigned responsibility to monitor and enforce the laws as written by Congress and signed by the President. This is their authority for existence. This existence has turned into making any decision through rules or regulations to solidify their existence for future administrations. Enforcement should be the key to their decisions and actions not the other way around.

The rule of law philosophy which should be in place at every level of government but sadly this is not the case with the federal government and may exist with some state governments. There is a term involved in applying the rule of law to government decisions and the name of this term is nomocracy. Two definitions are provided below to help understand this philosophy of government. The first definition comes from the Merriam-Webster online dictionary it reads:

Nomocracy – Government in accordance with a system of law.

The second source is from and reads:

(nomocracy) government based on the rule of law rather than an arbitrary will

These two definitions basically establish the legal principle that law should govern a nation, as opposed to arbitrary decisions by individual government officials. It is also important to point out that these government officials are not elected by the people. Some positions are appointed and approved by Congress while others are filled by the normal process of applying for a position.

Our laws and the Constitution is what should govern our country not the dictatorial rules and regulations. The volume of these actions is killing our economy and jobs. Granted some of these actions are necessary and appropriate based on the laws generated by Congress. Our country needs to return to the rule of law and constitutional government. The problems we have today are the result of laws not being enforced such as the immigration laws. Sometimes laws are written which have negative consequences and when this occurs they need to be changed to address the negativity or totally revoked.

The rule of law as described in the definition above is sadly missing in the actions or inactions of the federal government and in some cases state and local governments as is the case with sanctuary cities. Our constitution is or should be the basis for the laws that are generated at the federal government level. Our constitution and state constitutions should be the basis for the laws that are generated at the state level. One key point to remember many of the laws and the regulations that are attached to them do not have any connection to our constitution. In this respect state governments are fighting back in passing legislation to prevent enforcement of these laws. It is called the nullification movement and it is spreading across the country. In some cases specific laws are generated to make it a crime for federal officials to enforce the laws identified in this kind of action.

Laws are to be enforced even if those in charge to ensure their enforcement do not agree with them. Government officials cannot pick and choose which laws get enforced and which do not. Laws which have no basis under the constitution are basically illegal. It is true there are examples where laws are generated for which it is appropriate for the federal government to take action to protect all citizens against certain actions. These laws should be the exception not the rule as is currently the case. All of us need to comply with the law and if a law violates our rights under the Constitution they should be fought in our judicial system. In some cases organizations are fighting for our rights without us as individuals having to take such action. These organizations for which there are several are looking out for our best interest and we should applaud their efforts.


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    • Dennis AuBuchon profile imageAUTHOR

      Dennis AuBuchon 

      5 years ago from Ohio

      The Old Guard

      Thanks for commenting. I agree it would be a unique situation but the law is the law. Laws need to be based on the Constitution and some of the laws currently on the books would be gone and the impact would be far less if they were eliminated.

    • The Old Guard profile image

      John Wilson 

      5 years ago from Whereever I hang my hat is my hone. Currently in Ibarra, Ecuador


      Heaven forbid that we enforce laws evenly.

      It would change the scope of the country as soon as it was done.

      Well written hub, but to enforce laws evenly would be a new thing in amerika.

      All the big banks would close, the FED would be abolished, half of government officials would be indicted.

      It would be a sad state of affairs if laws were enforced throughout the country, evenly and justly.



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