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Corporate rights

Published September 14, 2013 1:01 am
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Salt Lake City voters recently received a "secret ballot" from the city asking them to vote for or against two statements of opinion: that only human beings, not corporations, have constitutional rights, and that money is not speech, so regulating political contributions is not equal to limiting speech.

Among the many reasons to vote no, here are three:

The purpose is unclear. Last year, an initiative petition containing these propositions was rejected, quite properly, because if passed it would not result in a law. That is still the case.

The procedure is irregular. There is no precedent for a citywide vote-by-mail process. Voters who are already motivated are more likely to complete this ballot, so the results are sure to skew in its favor.

The "argument against" statement is a sham. To make one simple point: Why single out corporations? What about labor unions? Churches? Nonprofit organizations like the AARP?

These are all collections of people that come together for certain ends. People do not lose their rights simply because they associate in groups.

Eric Hinderaker

Salt Lake City




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