James Madison once wrote that “A Government is instituted to protect property of every sort…This being the end of government, that alone is a just government, which impartially secures to every man, whatever is his own.”
So what happens when a government, other then the national government, that is, decides that it wants what you have, even if they claim it’s for a “public benefit?”
In the Township of Scott, Pennsylvania, a nice old lady – she’s even named Rose Mary Knick – owns a cute place on the edge of town that has a bit of property around it that – this is important – she owns.
(Commence menacing music here)
The Township loves its history and it wants to share it – all of it – with pretty much anybody who happens to saunter through the Township. And for reasons that will soon become the focal point of our discussion, it has decided that some of that history is on little old Rose Mary’s property.
So what’s a Township to do?
You might think that they would sit down with Rose Mary and have a nice pleasant conversation – probably over tea and milk and homemade cookies that she would make for the occasion – about the importance of this particular piece (or pieces) of history that might be on her land and work out a way that would benefit the Township, Rose Mary Knick and all the history-loving wanderers who go gallivanting through the Township of Scott.
Yeah… you might think that.
So of course, that isn’t what the Township of Scott, Pennsylvania decided to do…
And it’s our case for this week on Constitution Thursday, somewhat tongue in cheek titled: Grandma’s Haunted History…