MINUTE ON HUMAN RIGHTS AND CORPORATIONS
Adopted by the Northeast Ohio American Friends Service Committee, February 8, 2010
A fundamental Friends belief is that every person has inherent worth and dignity regardless of religion, race, nationality, ethnicity, income, gender, physical ability or sexual orientation. Humans have the capacity for emotion, imagination, awareness, self-reflection, empathy, aspirations, reason, creativity, responsibility and more. Every human being possesses inalienable rights simply by being human. Government laws and constitutions have affirmed many of these rights.
Corporations are not human and possess no human traits. They have no inalienable rights. They are entities, chartered by the State, with a purpose to serve the public by providing goods and/or services. They are nothing more than a set of legal documents much like deeds, wills and other warrants.
Historically, corporations were created to be subordinate to human persons. The State can revoke a corporate charter if it does not follow its terms.
Despite the recent Supreme Court decision, Citizens United vs FEC, granting corporations greater political free speech powers to contribute to political campaigns and despite past Supreme Court decisions granting corporations the same legal status as living, breathing human beings, rights reserved exclusively for human beings under the Bill of Rights and other sections of the US Constitution should not apply to corporations.
Corporations are not persons. Equating the two is not only a perversion of laws and constitutions but a usurpation of self-governance and perversion of life itself.
The Northeast Ohio American Friends Service Committee is a Quaker-based social action organization that educates, advocates and organizes on justice, peace and self-governance.
LINKS TO STATEMENTS FROM OTHER ORGANIZATIONS
Campaign to Legalize Democracy / Move to Amend
Alliance for Democracy
Progressive Democrats of America
League of Women Voters of the United States
Green Party of the United States
Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund
Brennan Center for Justice
People for the American Way