“In order to prevent those who are vested with authority from becoming oppressors, the people have a right at such periods and in such manner as they shall establish by their frame of government, to cause their public officers to return to private life; and to fill up vacant places by certain and regular elections and appointments.” Article 8, Part of the First, Constitution of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, 1780
Many individual rights found in the 30 separate articles of the “Part of the First” in the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts are also included in the Bill of Rights. However, there are some fascinating ideas which I would like to cover over the course of the next few posts.
Article 8 is particularly fascinating not solely because it relates to terms limits. It is the reason that John Adams, and those who also worked to draft this constitution, specified as the need for term limits. They feared that those in authority would evolve into oppressors. Elected officials were also mandated to return to private life rather than transitioning into another elected or appointed position within the government.
Please take a moment to consider how differently our elected officials might behave if they knew that not only was their time in office limited, but they would eventually return to the private life of an ordinary citizen. Representatives who understand how to economically support themselves in private life, do not lose touch with those who elected them, and are not consumed by power might just improve What IS Right With America.
The attached image is of a replica of the North Bridge taken at Minute Man National Historical Park which is located on the site of the Battle of Lexington.